Tag Archives: Job Boards

Resume blasting

Should you put your resume out on one internet job board?  On 50?  It really could get you a job.  But there’s a down side too.  Consider:

Your boss calls you into his office and closes the door.  “Two days ago you posted your resume on an internet job board.  Why are you quitting?”  Are you looking forward to that conversation?

Want even more fun?  You may not have posted your resume on the internet for 6 months.  A job board you never visited may have bought your resume and posted it without permission.  That way they can attract employers.  I know one guy who got called in by his boss 2 years after he first posted his resume.  The funny thing was that 2 years ago that posting got him his current job and the boss who was cross examining him.

One way to avoid this problem is to post a confidential resume.  It isn’t very effective, but it will keep you from being recognized by all but those who know your background in detail.  The problem is that you will get fewer responses to your posting.

Recruiters and resume blasting are a two sided coin.  Putting your resume on a website may get you calls from a lot of recruiters.  However, some recruiters refuse to work with candidates who have posted their resumes.  The ones who refuse to work with you because you posted your resume online are far fewer in number, but tend to have the more exclusive job openings.

Posting your resume online can absolutely energize your job search.  It can also be a long term problem.  It is easier to post your resume than to get it off the internet.

If you decide to post to as many places as possible you may want to consider a service like ResumeRabbit.  It can submit you to up to 85 sites instantly.


Something To Do Today

Go to ResumeRabbit and look at the places they will post your resume.  Whether you use the service or not, you may want to look for job postings at some of those sites.


Tomorrow:     Resume blasting –  mail services

Later:              Certifications – gold and lead

Recruiter motivation

Networking, referrals, recruiters, and job boards

Even a fox can get a job guarding a henhouse if he has good enough references.

Internet job boards fill 25% of jobs, recruiters fill 16%, and referrals fill 27% of jobs according to one survey.     So where do you want to concentrate your job hunting time?

But there are so many jobs on Indeed, Monster, Dice, and Career Builder, shouldn’t I try to get those jobs?

Absolutely!  But that doesn’t mean you should automatically send a resume through those services.

22% of jobs are found on a company’s own website.  Gotta like that.  Still, don’t even apply at the company’s own website until after you have tried to take advantage of this country’s main job finding system: Networking into referrals.

Print out the jobs you want that you find on the internet.  Make a list of the companies.  Next to each company, make a list of people you know who work there.  Include people who know someone who works there.  Add a list of recruiters who can get your resume past HR (Human Resources) and directly to the hiring manager.  Get into www.linkedin.com and see if you can find someone working at that company.  (Link to bryan@dilts.us to expand your network.) Add the people at companies you are targeting to a list.

Your objective is to find someone who can drop your information on the hiring manager’s desk.  Look at your whole list before you make a move.  Who has the best chance of helping you?  Who is the best connected?  Is it a professional networker or a recruiter?  Is it your friend’s wife?  Get your resume in there and follow up.  If you don’t get a call within a week, try again through another person.

27% of jobs are being filled by networking, 25% by job boards, 16% are being filled by recruiters.  Shouldn’t networking AND job boards AND recruiters be your main job search tools?


Something To Do Today

Get into www.linkedin.com

List where everyone you know works, their spouses too.  Keep adding to the list whenever you find out where someone works.  Keep track of coworkers who leave.  Start making a list of where everyone who knows you works. It may be worth more than gold to you now or in the future.


Later              Personality tests

Resume blasting

Certifications –  gold and lead

What if there are 6 ads and you really want the job?

You see 6 ads for one job you really want.  It is so good you would quit you’re your current job just to apply.  What do you do?

High Priority Jobs

Getting your resume into the hiring manager’s hands is your quest.

First gather information. 

Is there anything that makes you think the writer of one of the ads knows the hiring manager personally?

Check the date on all those ads.  When were they posted?  What day did they appear?  List when the company and each agency first advertised.  Did an agency advertise before the company itself?  They may have a close tie to the hiring manager.  Have the ads been going on for months?  The company is either getting a little desperate, has decided not to fill the job, or the job is full but recruiters haven’t bothered to pull the ads yet because they are still getting lots of calls.

How are the ads different?   Does one include a lot more in-depth information?  Is another extremely short?  Look closely.  Do any of them make you feel like the writer talked to the manager?  You want to talk to someone who has the hiring manager’s ear.

Second work your network.

Call the people you know at the company, or invite them out to lunch.  Call up recent employees. Connect on LinkedIn to everyone at the company you can.

What can you find out about the job?  Is there someone who can personally take your resume to the hiring manager?  How about to the hiring manager’s boss?  This is still the research phase.  Don’t give anyone your resume yet.  You only get to submit it once.

Is there a recruiter you trust?  Find out what information they have.  If they can bypass HR (Human Resources) or have other great connections then work with them.  For instance, there is one company I work with that requires all recruiters to submit resumes through their online system.  But I call the HR manager and tell her when my candidates go in so she can immediately extract them.  She is afraid of missing a truly hot candidate.  Other people who submit themselves are first sorted through by the receptionist.

You really do have to quiz recruiters about their connections.  If you answer a particular ad when there are 6 ads out there, you have a right to ask why you should send a resume in through them.

Third decide how to apply.

If the job is not exciting, it doesn’t matter how you submit your resume.  Just do some quick cosmetic changes and submit it through an agency or the HR department.

For the job that really turns you on, figure out who should submit your resume.  For any company it could be you, a friend, a recruiter or an acquaintance.  Choose in this order:

  1. Someone who can hand your resume to the hiring manager and personally recommend you.  It doesn’t get any better.
  2. Whoever can get your resume past HR and talk to the manager.
  3. The person that can talk to the HR manager or screener and get you past the first cut.
  4. At this point all submissions really are equal. Do it yourself, have an employee there submit you to HR or let a recruiter you trust and who gets back with you do it.

Fourth get your resume perfect

Put the bullets on your resume in order of importance.  Put a few key words in bold to make sure the screener and manager sees them.  Get rid of bullets, lines and sentences that do not apply to the job!!  A two page resume is fine for most jobs, but the second page may never get read.

Do the 10 second test with several people.  Hand your resume to a few friends and ask them to read it for 10 seconds.  Time them.  Take it away in 10 seconds.  Ask what they remember.  Do they mention your most important qualifications and accomplishments? If they do, it’s a winner.  If not, change it.

The 10 second test is critical because most screeners and managers give all the resumes a 10 second review to try to find the best ones first.  They will probably throw out your resume without further reading if they can’t see what they want in that first 10 seconds.

Fifth submit and follow up

Submit your resume.  Call up and find out what happened two days later.  Did your resume arrive there?  Did the manager see it yet?  When will he decide?

You really want that job? After your two day follow up call send a thank you note. Give them a nudge, short and friendly.  It is amazing how a thank you note can get someone to personally try one more time for you.

Keep calling back at least weekly.  Sometimes it does take a couple of months to fill a job.  Keep your candidacy alive until it is pronounced dead by someone who knows.

Take Your Best Shot

If you really want a job.  Go all out.  There may be 100 applicants.  In some cases there may be 1000.  Use personal contacts to set yourself apart from the herd.  Make sure your resume instantly says, “I’m qualified.”  And follow up in case you somehow get missed.


Something To Do Today

Start prioritizing all the jobs you can apply for.  On your written list make sure the jobs you crave stand out.  Treat them differently.  It is worth the extra effort.

Next week:  Recruiters and the hair on the back of your neck.

Tricks To Get Past The Screeners

First of all, apply for every job you are qualified for.  It is impossible to tell if the job is real.  You may as well take 5 minutes and apply.

Did you notice I did NOT say take 15 seconds and apply?  Internet job boards let you send off a resume without thinking.  You can send off a hundred in an hour.  That just assures you of 100 failures.  If you take 5 minutes and send off an effective resume for each job, you’ll do better than if you spam every employer in your area.

Most resumes are screened out electronically for large companies.  Every company then uses a clerical screener to throw out 90% of the resumes that are left with only a 10 second glance.  The remaining resumes get a 45 second read through and often only 5 out 100 original resumes are seen by anyone outside of HR.

Machines only care about one thing….a perfect match.  You have to have every requirement.  Look at the job advertisement.  Does it have an acronym like “MS Word”?  Then have “MS Word” and “Microsoft Word” in your resume somewhere.  Does it ask for “PC experience”?  Then put the words “PC experience” somewhere.  You may want to put a “Technology Experience” section at the end of each job or the end of the resume.  You can put PowerPoint, Access, SAP A/R, Lawson GL and other cryptic requirements there.  The machine will find an exact match and you will get to the clerical screener.

The clerical screener really wants to throw out as many resumes as possible.  Every one he keeps means more work.  Look at the job listing.  What are they asking for?  Don’t bury your most important experience in a paragraph.

Screeners do not read paragraphs.  They read

  • The first 5 words in bullets and paragraphs.
  • The first 3 bullets only.
  • Job titles that are in bold type
  • Words that are in bold type.

They may read italicized words, but not as often as bold.  Warning:  Don’t camouflage your qualifications by bolding everything YOU think is important.  Only bold the things asked for in the ad.

Make sure a screener who doesn’t want to have to read your whole resume sees you match the job.


Something To Do Today

For every job you are applying for, create a resume that will get past the screeners.  Bullet and bold everything the job ad asks for.

Tomorrow:  Job Boards:  How to beat the internal candidate.

How job boards use and abuse you

You can effectively use internet job boards.  You can get hired.  First though, you have to understand the weaknesses of job boards.  Then you can use these 4 weaknesses to your advantage.

Let’s say you have a choice between hiring someone you worked with for 3 years or a stranger.  The person you know is a proven top performer.  The person you never met before says he is a top performer.  Who do you hire?

That’s the first problem with internet job boards.  Many companies post jobs that they fill from their existing employees.  They have a policy to leave the door open for a superstar, so they put the job on the internet.  What happens when the superstar walks in?  Usually they say she is overqualified and show her the door.

Next problem: Most job ads come from employment agencies.  I have seen the same computer programmer job advertised by 10 agencies AND the company that wants to hire.  How many people will submit resumes for that job?  There will be at least 3 qualified people submitted by each agency, that’s 30.  Then there will be 100 people submitting themselves to the company and 5 of those will be qualified.  That’s a lot of competition.

Third problem:  Did you notice that 100 people will apply directly for the job and 5 will be qualified? If the screener doesn’t see exactly what he is looking for on your resume, you won’t get in for an interview.  Usually the screener doesn’t really know what you do.  He is looking for keywords and phrases.  You have to get past the screener.

Last problem:  Most jobs are NOT advertised on job boards.  But you can use the job boards to find them.

That’s four problems.  Think about overcoming them.  How can you turn each weakness into a strength for you?  How can you turn the tables?  You can.  I’ll tell you how over the coming week.


Something To Do Today

Go to www.monster.com and other job boards.  Search for a job like yours.  Follow the links through and see how many are agencies and how many are by the hiring company.  Who writes the most exciting ads?  Agencies or companies?  Take the list of four problems above and make your own list of ways to overcome them.

Beat the job boards – 4 ways to get a call

How do you get people to pay attention to your resume when there are 100 others just like it?

You can’t.  You have to be different.

The best way to be different is to be obviously well qualified.  Another great way is to prove, not just say, that you have a great attitude.  You can also solve their problems.  Being bizarre even occasionally works.

1. Being Bizarre

Unless there is substance behind your resume, being bizarre just gets your resume trashed.  So, try bizarre for fun and personal entertainment. Try the others for results.

2. Solve Their Problems

Most managers hire someone because they have a problem.  If the first two bullet points under your current job prove you can solve the manager’s problem, you’ll get an interview.  You figure out that problem by reading the ad, and also by calling up and asking.  You can call Human Resources, or you can call and ask for the “Manager Of Computer Systems”. If you can find out the real problem, prove you have already solved it for someone else.  Make it impossible to miss the fact that you can solve his problem.

3. Prove You Have A Great Attitude

How did you help lead the team?  In what ways were you provably the best?  How was your attendance?  You need to figure out how to show that everywhere you go the teams work better.  Don’t just say, “Everyone works better when I am around”, say “When I joined the team turnover dropped from 60% to 10% per year.”

4. Be Obviously Well Qualified

Prove you have done that job very well in the past.  Don’t say, “Worked on the Accounts Receivable team.”  Instead say, “Highest collections rate on the Accounts Receivable team.

You need to prove that you should be hired.  You also have to make it impossible to miss that fact.

Something To Do Today            

Call up a company about a job you know they have open.  Ask for the manager of that area.  No matter who answers the phone, ask why the job is open and what problem the person hired will solve.


Later: Beat the job boards – beating hundreds

Now to get past the human filter

Beat the job board trolls

Putting out an ad for a job that doesn’t exist is called “trolling” in the recruiting business. 

When you troll for fish you drag a bait or lure behind your boat as you putter around the lake.  Eventually a fish grabs it, and you reel in the fish.  When you troll for candidates you put a generic ad out, refresh it occasionally, and try to catch a qualified person looking for a job.  You don’t have a specific job, you just place the ad.

A fishing rod is a stick with a hook at one end and a fool at the other. (Samuel Johnson)

By the way, trolling for candidates is illegal in some states.  Recruiters do it any way because it works. The candidates who get jobs don’t mind.

You need to decide which ads to respond to.  You want to find a company that has a job for you, or a recruiting agency that has a job for you.  That means at times you will deliberately respond to trolling ads, and other times you won’t.

A trolling ad is usually very generic.  It gives no disqualifying details.  It just says, “accountant”, “salesman”,  “vb programmer”, or “electrical engineer”.  Look at trolling ads to figure out which agencies work in your field regularly. Ask some friends if they know the agencies whose ads impress you the most.  Call those agencies when you really just want your resume out to as many hiring companies as possible.  There is nothing wrong with that.

If you are more concerned about getting the right job, only respond to very specific ads.  The more disqualifiers an ad has in it, the more likely you are to get the specific job you want.

Responding to trolling ads is a choice.  You may not care today, but someday it could be important to you.

Something To Do Today            

Go fishing for trolling ads.  Find a few ads that look very generic.  Start collecting them and seeing if they are out there for month or years.  Some are a decade old.


Later: Beat the job boards – electronic filters

Are job boards keeping you from getting a job?

On Monster, CareerBuilder, HotJobs, or even Indeed .com.  Look for a job in your specialty. Did you carefully read the ads and find that the vast majority are put there by recruiting agencies?  Amazing, isn’t it?

The problem is not that corporations no longer have job openings, they have lots of them.  The problem is that there is a huge lack of skilled workers.  When a company desperately needs a skilled worker and can’t find him, they contact at least one agency.  Some companies contact 100 agencies.  Each of those agencies puts the job on the agency’s website and on at least one job board.  I don’t put ads on CareerBuilder, I put a few ads on 50 lesser job boards. So I also contribute to the glut of ads.

All those ads are causing less highly skilled people to apply for jobs through the internet job boards. A lot of under-skilled desperate people apply for the jobs instead. So, now they use computer filters to clear out under-skilled candidates.  Unfortunately the filters mess up a lot.  They tend to also filter out people who have less than stellar resumes, but great skill sets.

So what do you do?

I’ve got some great ideas coming up. 

Something To Do Today            

Have some fun.  See how many ads from agencies you can find for one particular job you can do well.  What is the same in all the ads?

Resume spreading services and warnings

There are two types of resume spreading services. One sends your resume to many job search websites like Monster and CareerBuilder.com. The other sends your resume to hundreds of recruiters and companies like ResumeRabbit,  indeed.com, and simplyhired.com.

The dangers

If you are employed, your resume may be sent to your current boss, or to a website he will access while searching for employees.  He may be upset to see you are looking for a job.

Your resume may also start a life on the internet that you can never stop.  As companies and sites sell and exchange masses of resumes, yours may be preserved for years and repeatedly displayed as “newly submitted.”

The reality

Getting your resume out to 1000 potential employers and recruiters is called a resume blast. It could get you hired. However, in most cases the people receiving your resume do not read it.  They are bombarded with resumes from similar services.  If you use the services that send your resume to recruiters and companies, your resume must have an impact at first glance.  If it requires a thorough reading, you are doomed. The only one of these services I check daily is ResumeSpider . I am sure there are some other useful ones somewhere.

The pay services like ResumeRabbit that send your resume out to 75 job boards get you a lot of quick exposure and save you time.  You also completely lose control of your resume. Once you send it, there is no way to indicate you have been hired.  It will be out on the internet forever.

Indeed.com and SimplyHired.com also will get your resume to a lot of employers, but function more like Monster or CareerBuilder.

Resume spreading services may be just what you need as long as you are not trying to keep your job search a secret.

Something to do today

Many job boards like Monster have resume spreading services that advertise on their sites.  You can also Google the phrase “resume blast”.


Coming up

Your pay reflects your interview

You, the movie

How to motivate yourself to search EFFECTIVELY

An actor asks himself, “What is my motivation?”  The rest of us laugh at him.  He’s trying to figure out which way to face on a stage.

Ice cream used to motivate me. I’d walk on hot coals to get it.  I still like ice cream, but it won’t get me to detour 100 yards to a store now.  Sometimes leaving work early is a great motivator.  Some days a chance to go for a walk will get me to work hard.  Winning is a great motivator at times.  Sometimes letting my kid just barely win is a motivator. What motivates me changes hourly, daily, weekly and monthly.

Getting a job is often not enough of a motivator in your job search.  To avoid pain, unmotivated people spend hours in front of a computer “playing” with job boards. There is no need to call people and admit you want a new job. Lack of real motivation is behind taking friends out to eat instead of creating a network by eating with more helpful strangers.

I have come to the conclusion that my subjective account of my motivation is largely mythical on almost all occasions. I don’t know why I do things. (Lloyd Dobens)

Use motivation in two ways.

  1. Figure out what motivates you to avoid a job hunting method
  2. Use motivation to get you to work harder.

Real networking is difficult for many.  Calling up a company and asking for the manager, VP, CFO or President is impossible for many people. Try to figure out why that call is difficult, while a call to HR (Human Resources) is easy.  HR knows less about jobs than the VP of Operations does.  If fear or embarrassment keeps you from making calls to real decision makers, admit it.  Talk about it with someone.  Make some commitments and work your way through it.

Making a few MORE contacts can also be difficult.  Find rewards that will get you to make a few more calls and submit more resumes.  It can be that you will only watch your TV show if you get 3 more resumes out or make 3 more calls.  Set a goal of only going golfing if you are taking a potential hiring manager from another company.  Decide you won’t turn on the computer until you have made 4 follow up calls where you have submitted your resume.

Think of what motivates you today.  Admit roadblocks and work around them.  Find little incentives you can give yourself to do just a little more in your job search.

Something To Do Today

Choose one activity you avoid.  Give yourself an incentive to do it.  Now do it.


Tomorrow:           Waiting for the “help wanted” sign

Later:                    Networking

Calls to companies

Intelligent use of recruiters

Get famous, get a job

Sneaky no good cops set a trap for me