It’s Worth it to Reply to Job Postings!

15 10 2015

The phrase Go For It in red text on a yellow sticky note posted on a green notice boardHi Everyone,

You don’t see the emails we get from people who’ve landed jobs from the KIT List, so I want to encourage you to keep up your efforts. It really is WORTH it!

In fact, with the new KIT List web site that’s in final development, I’ll have a Testimonials section where you can read quotes from our KIT List recruiters and employers who’ve hired great people — and from job seekers who’ve landed jobs that will help keep you inspired!

I know it can be discouraging when you’re in the job-search mode. I also hear many job seekers worry that their resumes go into a black hole when they reply to jobs on the web. On the big sites, that can be true.

With the KIT List, there’s a big difference:

  • Your email goes directly to the recruiter or hiring person who posted the job.
  • Since we purposely don’t market the KIT List, the people on the KIT List have been referred by another friend or colleague. This has kept the quality of the people on the list high as top people refer other talented people.
  • Since we’re smaller than the huge job boards, you’re not one of hundreds replying to a job and getting sorted via a software screening program, so your response will be seen by a real person.

For that reason, it’s also important to take the time to write even a brief cover note when you reply to a KIT List job.

Don’t Overlook the Power of a Good Cover Letter

Over the years, I’ve seen people blow their chance to make a good impression either by not including a cover note at all, or by writing the following:

  • “Is this job still open?” Of course it is, they just posted it!
  • “What’s the rate (or salary)?” Please don’t do that! Instead, show your interest and value to them first. Save the salary query until the interview, and better yet, let them bring it up!
  • “Here’s my resume”

Tips for Your Cover Letter

I’ve talked to many recruiters over the years, and even had them as panelists at KIT List events and on the KIT List TV Show. Some recruiters don’t really look at cover letters, but you’d be surprised that so many actually do! Don’t run the risk of getting weeded out by not having a cover letter when it’s a recruiter or hiring manager who DOES care about a cover letter.

Your cover letter can be brief, but these are a few things that you should include:

  • Something stating your interest in the role
  •  The actual job title since they are likely hiring for multiple roles
  • A few bullets from your experience that pertain to the key requirements listed in the job description
  • Make sure you do not have any typos or grammatical errors
  • Include a nice closing statement
  • Your name and a good number to reach you

Avoid These Other Common Mistakes

It’s also a mistake is to reply to a job for which you are not remotely a fit. You don’t have to be a perfect match with all the requirements, but some people get a bad reputation for replying to just any job. Stay on focus and you’ll be a stronger candidate.

Another mistake is that you get put off by a long list of requirements and you don’t feel like you’re an exact fit. Job descriptions can be unintentionally misleading if it’s been cut and pasted from many other job posts, or if the person writing it didn’t research it well with the hiring manager. I’ve asked recruiters and they said that if you’re a 75% to 80% match with the job requirements to GO FOR IT! Don’t disqualify yourself prematurely.

Don’t get disheartened during the job search process. You never know what effort will be the one that will connect you with the right job. Keep at it, make a great impression with a good cover letter, and we hope you find a job you love soon!

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