If you have ever applied for a job and wondered why no one called you for an interview, it might be because you're not doing enough to get your application noticed. At a time when cover letters and resumes are submitted en masse through online job search engines, job hunting has become impersonal and increasingly competitive. It is imperative that you take extra steps to get your application noticed by potential employers.
Create a professional quality resume. If you are a college graduate, visit your school's placement office. A placement specialist can analyze your resume and ensure that it includes the necessary information. You can also submit your resume to a professional resume service like those found on major job search websites. Some will provide you with a one-time free analysis, while others charge a small fee to have your resume professionally reviewed.
Ask to speak to a hiring manager when you go to apply for a job. Simply dropping off your resume and hoping for the best is like playing the lottery. The odds are stacked against you from the outset. Show up at the place you intend to submit your application, fully dressed in business attire and ready for an interview. Without being arrogant or obnoxious, politely ask to speak to someone in charge of conducting interviews. Don't take no for an answer the first time, or maybe even the second time you ask. You don't have to actually have the interview that day, but by insisting that you speak to someone in charge, you can get your application noticed by introducing yourself to the hiring manager. This will create the perception that you are someone who takes charge and knows how to get things done.
Network your way through the application process. Contact any established connections you have in the business community and ask them to make a recommendation on your behalf. Recommendations from well-respected members of your industry or others in the business community can go a long way toward getting you and your application noticed.
Research potential employers and tailor each application to the specific needs of the company or organization. Find ways to include your target employer's slogan in the introductory paragraph of your cover letter, Career Builder suggests. Or include a two-column side-by-side listing of your qualifications and your potential employer's needs. This will give a clear indication of how you fit that company's current job opening.
Jared Lewis is a professor of history, philosophy and the humanities. He has taught various courses in these fields since 2001. A former licensed financial adviser, he now works as a writer and has published numerous articles on education and business. He holds a bachelor's degree in history, a master's degree in theology and has completed doctoral work in American history.