Are you a skimmer? Are you one of those individuals that quickly skims emails? Do you respond immediately, just so you can hit file or delete without thinking about your response? I get some pretty bizarre responses to basic requests which ultimately has helped me identify some email job search tips that can help candidates improve their chances of being hired.
JOB SEARCH EMAIL TIP #1: WRITE WITH PROFESSIONALISM — NO MATTER THE AUDIENCE
When you are seeking a job, your responses to emails are being evaluated regardless of who is receiving the message. Job seekers often feel recruiters are only interested in closing the deal, which is very far from the truth. Personally, I have a College Diploma in Business Communications and a BA in History. I spent many hours reading boring text books and writing essays for the privilege of saying that.
When my clients want a candidate with “excellent communication skills” I am constantly evaluating the content of the emails I am sent from applicants. That’s part of my job; ongoing assessment. Other skills that recruiters look for in job seeker’s emails include attention to detail and resourcefulness.
JOB SEARCH EMAIL TIP #2: DON’T COPY AND PASTE
It can be tempting to use the same email template when searching for a job. Just swap out the name of the position and the company and you should be ok, right? Wrong. Recruiters and HR Managers can quickly identify these types of emails and rule you out as a candidate. They pick up on this when the message doesn’t speak to the specifics of the job posting. Be sure to directly address the qualities the employer is looking for and the tasks the employee will be responsible for.
JOB SEARCH EMAIL TIP #3: TRIPLE CHECK YOUR MESSAGE FOR CLARITY, ERRORS, AND NECESSARY DETAILS
Blatant spelling mistakes will probably get identified or corrected automatically, but just because there are no red underlined words in your email, doesn’t mean it’s ready to send. For example, I sent off an invite for an interview to a candidate, and they immediately replied back and asked what industry the client was in. The name of the company was clearly indicated in the email I had sent, along with the address and contact name for the interview. It would have taken literally seconds to Google the company name!
Before pressing send, ask yourself the following questions:
- Is my message clear? Or does it include vague terms like “they”?
- Are there grammar errors? Use a tool like Hemingway to analyze your email for readability
- Are there questions that you could find the answer to yourself? Show the recipient your resourcefulness by doing your own research
Read carefully, respond after thinking, and proofread before you press send.
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