Thursday, May 19, 2016

Why Your Job Applications Are Unsuccessful

“You'll never please everyone, but you only have to please a few people to get an offer.” - Harvey MacKay


Stories abound of candidates who have applied for a job all their life after graduation or seeking to change a job, and have not been invited for once to an interview. They keep wondering what they might have done wrong and no one is providing answers.


I would like to start by stating that the purpose of a job application is to sell oneself to an organisation. If candidates have this purpose in mind, they would ensure that they take their time in submitting one. When recruiters advertise for openings, they usually would indicate the job functions, and person specification on the advert. For any candidate to be considered, it is required that the application submitted meets the person specification and also follows the method of application as specified. What I have noticed in my several years of practice is that candidates without properly reading a job announcement will proceed to forward their CVs or application letters. Most of the time, they do not follow the application procedure and worst of all they do not even qualify for the role advertised.

Some candidates are in the habit of:
1. Forwarding a blank email with their CV attached;

2. Forwarding a forwarded email which they used to forwarded their CV to other organisations;

3. Writing a motivation letter or email that has no relation to the job advertised, probably copied from someone;

4. Forwarding their CV knowing fully well that they do not qualify for the advertised job;

5. Not following the instruction on how applications should be submitted e.g. subject of email etc.

Most times, when candidates do not receive a response, it highly likely that they did not comply with the requirement for application or do not meet the requirements for the job. Why waste my time responding to a candidate who did not follow instructions or who responded without properly reading through the advertisement?

Most recruiters would usually indicate in the notice whether they would respond to all candidates or not. My advice would be for candidates to watch out for this kind of notice in the advertisement. In some cases, the recruiter would state that ONLY SHORTLISTED candidates will be contacted. In other cases, some might state that if you do not hear from them after a certain period, you might not have been successful. Notwithstanding that these rules exist, the major cause of unsuccessful application are as a result of candidates not following clear instructions as advertised.

In order to get the attention of the recruiter, you need to understand that your job application is your business or marketing plan. Use it as a tool to sell yourself to the recruiter. In order to have a successful application or one that elicit a response from the recruiter, I would recommend the following tips:

1. Read through the job announcement very well to understand the functions of the role and assess your experience in order to determine if you had performed similar functions in the past or currently.

2. Review the person specification and assess your qualifications to ensure that you meet all or most requirements.

3. Craft a beautiful and well written motivation letter or email summarising your experience, qualifications and relate them to position advertised.

4. Review thoroughly the instructions for submitting applications and follow same as required.

5. Tailor your motivation letter to address each job vacancy

6. Don’t use a one size fit all motivation letter. Show the recruiter in your letter or email that you match the requirements as advertised.

If you do all of these, be sure that the recruiter will show interest in your application.



Image: www.clubic.com

36 comments:

  1. These are great tips that are well summarized as a candidate preparing a marketing plan to sell self to the recruiters. Thank you Mr. Michael.

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  2. Thank you sir for these great tips

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  3. Nice tips Mr Micheal just have a question for I wrote the apptitude test of your bank and passed attended the pre interview and was asked to get a gurantor which I did and submitted that same week I used the CSO of a multinational which to me is an administrative post but have not been called for interview my question is is my guarantor the reason why I wasn't invited for interview? I would really appreciate a feedback thanks a lot.

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    1. Hello Elma, you would need to contact the Talent Acquisition team on the phone number that was included in the SMS invites that you received or visit the HR Office to speak with the Officer in charge of Talent Acquisition. The talent acquisition team would be in a better position to respond to your question.

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  4. This is so true and well put. This habit of generic letters really doesn't help. Asa recruiter l can tell that no effort was put into it. I am sure those who read this article will find it very helpful in landing them that much desired job.

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    1. Thanks Rufaro. I am glad that the article resonates with you.

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  5. Nice piece.Just wishing it is shared by all readers for the benefit of many.Great Job.

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    1. @Vicent, Thank you. You could actually start by sharing the link to this post with all your contacts who in-turn will share with their contacts. This will make the post reach as many that need the information shared here.

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  6. Great lessons learnt. Thank you Sir for the direction.

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  7. This is really Enlightening: Sending a blank mail and forwarding a sent mail might imply that the sender has a non chalant attitude.

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  8. Well spoken Sir,

    A quick question, what if you do all that has been mentioned above, what will be the reason why you have not yet been called for an interview?

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    Replies
    1. Reason could be that you did not match the job and person specifications.

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  9. nonye_innocent@yahoo.comAugust 6, 2016 at 1:22 PM

    This is very insightful and well delivered in simple expressions for all to comprehend. Am glad to be hear. I will indeed share it to all my contacts. Thank you sir. Innocent

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  10. This is great.Thanks Sir for the info.

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  11. Great insights. Very enlightening. God's blessing sir.

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  12. Thanks for the info.God bless you sir.

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  13. Well spoken. Very educative tips. I'm going to share with my friends looking for opportunities in the labour market. Jah bless

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  14. Nice tips, great lesson. I have learnt a lot. Thank you sir.

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  15. NICE One...Thanks

    ngojobsinafrica.com/

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  16. can i post this on my site?

    Great tips here..

    https://www.justjobsng.com/

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    Replies
    1. Yes, Onyinye. However, do include a link to my blog in order to give credit to the source.

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