This post was written by Marc Rosenberg, Cyrus's technical recruiter (firstname.lastname@example.org)
While many people spend hours tweaking their resume before submitting it, the content of the email submission itself is often overlooked. Unfortunately, in cases like this the chances of getting an interview can be blown before the attachment is even opened. As a recruiter, I’ve had quite a few resumes grace my inbox, and I’ve developed some quick and easy tips you can follow to help ensure that your resume is actually read...
1. Spell the recruiter’s name correctly.
This may seem like a no-brainer, but you’d be shocked to learn how many emails I receive addressed to ‘Mark’. I may be in the minority here, but I bet Sean doesn’t like to get Shawn’s mail as much as Kirsten hates getting Kristen’s. I can’t guarantee that this is something that bothers most people, but if I’m hiring you to reach out to potential clients, I need you to spell their names correctly and if you can’t be bothered to do that when applying for a job, I can’t count on you to do it when approaching new clients. If you are unsure of their name, simply write “To Whom It May Concern”.
2. Check the name of your attachment.
An easy, clean way to name the file of your resume is “your_name_resume” (order of first and last name doesn’t matter). However, some people like to get fancy and that is where you can run into some problems. Recently, I opened a resume that was saved as ‘snoopy 1’ and needless to say I wasn’t too impressed with what I read. In many cases, recruiters won’t even bother opening a document with a title like that and even if your skills are indeed a match, no one will ever know. A poorly named file can easily lower someone’s perceptions of your professionalism and no one will ever know that you have 20 years of experience and lead teams that exceeded sales goals every quarter.
3. Content. Content. Content.
It may seem like you need to be the first person to reply to an ad in order to keep your resume out of the HR black hole, however, when people rush to send in their resume my inbox becomes filled with emails that read like this:
Good Afternoon, What I bring to your firm are the following.Outgoing,confident and a self motivated personality.Team player, competitive but always supportive.I,m passionate and determined to succeed. I look forward to your call. All the best xxxx
This goes back to rule number one. If you don’t take the time to proofread the email containing your resume, it is not a good indication that I can trust you to reach out to clients. Take the time to read through your content and if you can’t send your resume until you get home, it is probably for the best. Also, if you’re staying up late to apply for jobs, you might not want to hit send until the next morning when you can make sure that your late night grammar mistakes won’t get the best of you.
I cannot guarantee that following these three simple rules will get you your dream job, however I can assure you that they will help you will stand out and be taken seriously by recruiters. These are common mistakes made by people applying for positions from Executives to Office Assistants. Do yourself a favor and spend some time tweaking the body of your email as well as your resume. Hopefully, even if you’re ultimately not a fit for the position you applied for, showing this kind of professionalism could help you get a referral.