You’ve spotted a brilliant-looking job online. Great location, great salary, interesting role. All excited, you upload your CV, hit send, and sit back, dreaming of the interview you know you’ll get, almost tasting that offer letter brimming with a massive salary hike.
A week goes by. Two weeks. Three weeks. A month. You never hear back. Unfortunately, this is all too common for jobseekers, so here are some reasons why you never heard back.
CV writing is a skill that’s difficult to master; that’s why CV writing services exist. Your CV is a marketing document to sell yourself. A clear, well formatted CV helps: if it isn’t easy to read, it won’t get read. If you struggle writing it, it’s worth paying a professional. If you cannot afford this service, visit various recruiter websites that have samples of CV formats and tips.
You know you can do the job, the recruiter don’t unless you tell them. Make no assumptions. Recruiters prefer to speak to candidates where they can immediately see that they are a strong match for the role. They will probably pick up the phone for a chat to a candidate who hasn’t listed their skills, but it won’t be their top priority when they have 3 great CVs that they chasing instead.
Almost every candidate puts ‘attention to detail’ in their CV. Yet those same CVs contain spelling and grammar mistakes and other errors. “Mistakes on CVs” is often listed as the number 1 reason hiring managers reject an application. Using a recruiter helps because they proof-read and edit your CV.
You’ve seen the job title (e.g. Project Manager) and hit apply without properly reading the advert. Unfortunately, you’re a construction Project Manager applying to an IT Project Manager position leading Agile digital projects – not gonna happen. Read the advert carefully to ensure that the role is suitable for you. If it isn’t, you’re unlikely to hear back.
It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a job seeker in possession of a desire for a new role, must demonstrate transferable experience. Rewrite your CV for every application and tailor it to precisely what is asked for. Is that experience relevant to the job you want? If not, ditch it.
Most recruiters give up after 30 seconds if they see nothing relevant.
This is the 21st century. People have Facebook , Twitter, LinkedIn accounts. You will be researched. Any discrepancies between your online presence and CV will ring major alarm bells. Recruiters often see candidates with significant differences between the dates on their CV’s and the dates on their LinkedIn profile.
You should never lie on an application as it is easy to get found out. Furthermore, if you put reference details on your CV, don’t be surprised if people call them – any problems with references, your chances of an interview are ruined. Only give references on request, and let your referee know to expect a call.
Your CV’s OK, your skills are OK, your experience is OK… You’re just not quite right. There’s no exciting feeling looking at your CV that you’ll be the next placement, so your application goes nowhere. This isn’t your fault; it’s the gut feeling of the hiring manager or recruiter. It isn’t fair to you, but with fifty CV’s awaiting review, yours is put down, forgotten.
In an ideal world, every candidate would get a detailed reason why their application isn’t progressed. Unfortunately, that’s never happening – we’re all too busy. Recruiters or hiring manager can receive over 100 responses; 10 worth speaking to. To call or e-mail all the other 90 candidates who applied could take all week.
However, if you ensure your application is well-formatted, relevant, and shows strong correlation to the role applied for, you’ll get a call back!