Be patient. Workamper Bob and Anne sent out 35 resumes. Initially only five responded. It took awhile, but they eventually began hearing back from those employers. The hiring process can take a while. Give it time to work.
by Jaimie Hall Bruzenak
This article comes from an issue of Workamper News magazine. COPYRIGHT by Workamper News. IT IS A VIOLATION OF U.S. COPYRIGHT LAW TO PUBLISH, POST, BROADCAST OR PHOTOCOPY ANY PORTION OF THIS PUBLICATION.
“I have sent 76 emails with resumes and have made many phone calls to follow up. Only 19 have responded … All it takes is less than 1 minute to reply and say they have no need now.” writes Workamper Gloria.
Gloria is not alone. Many Workampers experience this frustration. Sometimes it feels like your resume has gone into a black hole and disappeared. So what can you do?
First, look at your resume. Before sending it, double check to see if it is targeted specifically to the position. Did you modify your objective if necessary and show how you have the skills and experience to do that job? Is it easy to read, with plenty of white space. Most important, do you show what you can do for the employer rather than tell what you need? A strong resume and cover letter are more likely to grab an employer’s attention.
Second, let’s get some perspective. Your need is not the employer’s. As harsh as it may seem, employers have their own timetable. They may think, “I should start getting resumes for next year.” and place an ad. But they may not be feeling any urgency about actually filling the position yet.
In fact, they may not be sure at this point exactly what they need and how many people to hire. Last year’s Workampers might come back, but they havent heard a definite answer from them.
Other possible scenarios:
- The current season isn’t over yet and closing and winterizing projects have priority over hiring next summer’s Workampers. For an unsolicited resume to an employer who has not placed an ad this would be even more likely.
- They received 100 resumes. Either they are overwhelmed and put off looking at them or contact only the first few.
- They see something on your resume that makes them discard yours or put it at the bottom of the pile. You may not match what they advertised for. For example, the position requires experience with a specific campground reservation software and you don’t have that.
What Can You Do?
In the meantime, you wonder what to do. Here are some suggestions:
Make it easy to respond. Be sure your name, email and telephone number are on both your cover letter and your resume. Also, don’t have an email where the employer has to be “approved” to send mail to you. Most won’t bother.
If you send your resume by email, request a read receipt so youll know your email was opened. Get creative if mailing your resume, include a stamped, self-addressed postcard to drop in the mail.
Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Don’t wait for a favorite employer to respond before sending out other resumes. Serious job hunters aim for sending out five to seven resumes per week.
Call first. Before sending out a resume to an employer who isn’t currently advertising, call first. Introduce yourself and find out if they will be hiring for the next season. Ask if you can send a resume. If so, find out their time frame for making a decision.
Follow up a few days later. Follow up each resume with a phone call if possible to the decision maker, unless the ad specifically says, “no calls.” If you can talk to the decision maker before sending a resume, even better. You can do some pre-screening, make your name stand out, and find out their hiring schedule and procedure.
Be patient. Remember, you may be in a hurry, but the employer may not be. Occasionally Workampers report that an employer got back to them several months or even a year later!
Two notes about calling an employer for whatever reason. First, call during a time when they are likely to be less busy. Before the office opens might be a good time. A weekend or check-in time at an RV park is not.
And second, never end a call without finding out when you can check back if you haven’t heard back from them.
What if you can’t get through? See numbers 2 and 5. Apply to many employers so you aren’t relying on just one. If you don’t hear back in a reasonable amount of time, move on. Getting a job is partly a numbers game.
And, be patient. Workamper Bob and Anne sent out 35 resumes. Initially only five responded. It took awhile, but they eventually began hearing back from those employers. The hiring process can take a while. Give it time to work.
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