What’s the worst that can happen? 8 gaffs when applying for roles

Applying for a new role can be tedious at the best of times – we’ve all been there, wondering after making a few applications is we’ll ever hear anything back from recruiters and employers. In a deflated state we start to become less professional to sending off our CVs as there seems little if no point in making any extra effort as no effort is offered in response. I have compiled a list of application mistakes below – some of which do seem a little farfetched, but having spent 5 years in recruitment trust me it does happen!

  1. Copy and pasting parts of the job advert into your CV – yes we have seen a number of candidates who feel they match a role so well that they simply take the requirements of the advert and paste into their remit and then apply for the role. Shockingly, these candidates do not think they will be found out.
  2. Applying for any role with “Project” in the title – this can be from Project Administrator paying £20k to Head of Projects paying £80k. There is a huge difference in requirements and skills required for these roles and by applying for roles at polar opposites of the scale you are demonstrating you do not read the adverts or you simply do not understand the roles – either way, it’s a quick route to being completely discarded for any role by that recruiter.
  3. Sending in an application for a Project Manager role when describing yourself as anything other than a PM and the cover letter even states you are applying for a completely different role. Attention to detail?
  4. Sending an email to apply for a role without attaching your CV and inviting the recruiter to call you to discuss. Unfortunately, you are highly unlikely to get that call – recruiters tend to have a long list of applications and will be managing more than one role, they need to see your CV first in order to decide whether you have the correct skill set for their role.
  5. Sending an application and 5 minutes later calling the recruiter to understand if you will be put forward for a role. Slow down! Give it at least a few hours before you chase up for that kind of feedback, it is OK to call and check the email has been received earlier though.
  6. Calling before applying and being rude to the receptionist – yes it has happened several times over, on occasions it was the MD answering the call. Everyone deserves to be treated pleasantly and you just don’t know who you are speaking with so be polite as rudeness is reported to the recruiter. First impressions last!
  7. Faxing your CV to the recruiter – this is not a good idea, faxes get lost in piles of invoices etc and the quality of the print is not ideal. Keep to emailing electronic copies; it’s quicker, cleaner and more cost effective for you. Plus, in a world where we email a lot for work – demonstrating your ability and willingness to do so is expected.
  8. Stating your family and their education etc – don’t do it, the CV is about you and although it is fantastic that you have a son aged 15 currently taking his GCSEs and a daughter currently studying for a journalism degree at university; they are not you! Keep the CV professional and solely about you and your work (and of course hobbies).

First impressions really do last; so no matter how frustrated or fed up of applying for roles you are – make sure each application is a good one. You may not be quite right for that role in the recruiters’ eyes but you will keep in their mind for future applications if you are professional and your CV is good. For advice on applications and a free CV review make contact today: www.thecvrighter.co.uk  our CV review is free of charge with no obligation to take up our services.

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