Job hunting took longer than I’d prefer. And I’ve learned a few things in the process. Since contacts keep calling me for advice, I’m posting some of those lessons here.
Applying for a job isn’t the end of applying for a job. So you’ve filled out the antiquated online corporate application, parsing the last 10 years of your work experience and providing references and contact info for supervisors ad nauseum. Time to sit back with a Corona? Know that the hour you spent studious completely your application was probably a waste of time.
The resume-eating Human Resources Machine isn’t going to get you hired any more than the Great Spaghetti Monster in the sky will. It is a rarity that I get a phone call from a recruiter on the basis of an online application. These systems are designed to suck all of the personality out of applicants leaving behind a bunch of buzz words that can be found with a series of arbitrary filters assigned to a data set.
If you really want to land an interview, you need to get to the hiring manager. Some job descriptions make this easy and tell you that you’ll be reporting to the Director of X or the VP of Y. Plug that title and company into an advanced search on LinkedIn and you just might have a target desk for your resume.
If the supervisor isn’t apparent, try to get your resume to someone in that department. Work your connections to find someone at the company of your choice to get your resume passed along internally. A forward from a trusted co-worker or past colleague frequently gets you out of the slush pile and onto a hiring manager’s desk. I interview more often than not when I do so.