Applied to many jobs and got no calls? Feel like applying for jobs online doesn't work? These tips are for you.

One puffin talking to another
Photo by Wynand van Poortvliet

This is a guest post by Chandlee Bryan.

You saw a job listing you were excited about. You applied. You told a friend or two you applied. Maybe you got an interview? They said they’d call you.

You never heard back.

Ever happened to you?

resume responses company feedback 1

If your answer is yes – which of course it is – and you’ve applied for loads of jobs and got no reply, it’s easy to start feeling like the title of a sad country music song:

You Never Even Call Me By My Name

Where Do I Fit in the Picture?

What Hurts the Most (Is Nothing in My In-Box)

While it’s never a good idea to go negative in a job search and storm the workplace to get a response, here are three ways you can work on getting better feedback and improve your chances in the job hunt.

Do you typically contact employers before sending your resume?


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3 ways to get responses from recruiters

1) Connect with employers besides applying

resume responses company feedback 2

From You Never Even Call Me By My Name to First Name Basis…

Employers get dozens if not hundreds of applications for one job.

Until you interact with the organization at which you’ve applied, your name is a series of characters online. Make yourself real. Get mentioned.

Here’s how to do it:

Follow-up after you apply. Be clever. Call the hiring manager. Send a fax. Get introduced by a trusted friend. It doesn’t matter how you do it. Just make it happen.

And when you do, go for what my friend Laura Labovich calls the “Forrest Gump” or “James Bond” approach. Mention your name TWICE. As in, “I’m Forrest, Forrest Gump” Or “Bond, James Bond here. I’ve noticed you have a need for someone with experience in defusing explosives.”

Saying it twice makes you more memorable.

2) Check for employer updates

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From What Hurts the Most (Is Nothing in my In-box) to Knowing What Happened…

Here’s a secret not always shared-

Often employers will give you feedback on the status of your job application, but you have to log back into the account you created to apply for the job to see this information.

Sometimes the information you receive isn’t what you wanted – your application may not have been viewed, you may have gotten turned down, the job may no longer be available.

But knowing what your status is can at least end the waiting game.

3) Follow up after rejections

resume responses company feedback 4

From Where Do I Fit in the Picture to There’s a Place for Me…

Have you ever been told you are overqualified?

Rejected because your experience far exceeds the requirements for a position?

Too senior for a job offer?

I call this the Goldilocks Syndrome: a unique condition wherein a potential employer decides you are over- or under-qualified for a job despite the fact that you may actually be a fit.

One way to beat this syndrome is to follow up on your rejection, pleasantly express your disappointment at not having the opportunity – and say what you would have learned from the job. Restate your interest in the organization.

Worst case scenario: You still don’t get the job, but you weren't going to anyway.

Best case scenario: The employer reconsiders. I’ve watched a job seeker use this approach to turn a rejection into a job offer.

Question of the article

Do you typically contact employers before sending your resume? If so, what's your go-to outreach tactic? Tell us in the comments.

What others are saying

Bonus: Resume Not Getting a Response? Do This ASAP!

About the Author

chandlee bryan portraitChandlee Bryan, M.Ed. is a job search strategist and resume writer at Best Fit Forward, she also serves as the Assistant Director at the Center for Professional Development at Dartmouth College. She is the co-organizer of one of the largest job seekers Meetup groups in the world and enjoys listening to – and telling – stories in her spare time. You can follow her career advice on Twitter at @chandlee.

This article was part of the Over $5000 in Prizes: The 5th Annual JobMob Guest Blogging Contest, which was made possible thanks in large part to our sponsors:

JOBlog Marcus Tandler’s JOBlog is Germany’s oldest blog about job search & careers.
Rabbi Issamar Ginzberg Rabbi Issamar Ginzberg is an internationally acclaimed advisor to successful business owners, known for his small business ideas.

READ NEXT: How to Quickly Recover From Bad Job Interviews

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Jacob Share

Job Search Expert, Professional Blogger, Creative Thinker, Community Builder with a sense of humor. I like to help people.
  • You must be kidding me – has the offer been in a real job search lately? I recommend following the hiring VP to his or her golf / country club, watch tem for a week or so and get to know the sched., find the car in the club’s parking lot, after t=you quarry has left to play a few holes. Slash their tires, and then wait, be discrete you career motivated vandal!

    When the hiring manager comes by to se the flat tire, walk by like you belong there, best to be in gold attire, and offer to help, If they say “oh, I can call road service”, counter with, “oh that will be hours, we can put your spare on in 20 minutes. ”

    As you commiserate, whether you end up changing the spare or not, ask them what they do for work, what company, etc. then slip it in, “oh, I just applied for manager of xxx. “!!

    Dont like that approach? Then use the tips in this article.

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