Five Critical Elements For Getting Your Online Job Applications Noticed

Have you ever noticed how applying for jobs online just seems to waste so much time, and rarely, if ever gets you a response. If you need to see the response rate go up, and actually want to score an interview or more from all of the online job applications that you submit, these five critical suggestions will make that BIG difference for you.

The Job Search Field Has Changed

You have to know and understand that the Job Search tactics that worked 10 years ago, don't work today. Even the ones that may have worked a year or two ago, are now floundering. The Job Search environment has changed that much! The thing that has changed the most is how employers use the Internet to collect, sort, and manage potential employees. For many jobs the competition is extreme, there may be thousands or tens of thousands of job applications for the job or jobs you are interested in. While it is true that a good resume can make a huge difference in this endeavor, it isn't the only factor. Below are some elements that will make your application noticed and will get you more responses than you have ever had in the past.


When you fill out an online job application, the application ends up in an online database. Employers pull applicants out of the database through methods that are much like a Google Search. They select specific criteria and "search" the database for the right applicants. If you understand this, you will understand that you cannot make much progress towards getting an interview with a generic resume. You will need to look at the job description and make sure that the keywords that describe the job can be found in your resume and application. The database robots will pull up the applications with the most keywords found. If the keywords aren't found in your application, then yours will not bubble-up to the top of the list of job applicants looked at for the job. It is really that simple. Insert the keywords liberally in your resume and application for the maximum opportunity of being noticed.


If the left-overs in the refrigerator are over a week old, do you eat them, or throw them away? Well, the same can be said of the online job profiles on Monster or CareerBuilder. Your resume and profile are sorted in order of newest to oldest in the database searches, after the initial keyword matching. If your is more than a week old, it loses its front page ranking and begins to slide down in the results. After a couple of weeks, it may not even be on a page that potential employers will look at. You want employers and recruiters to find your profile and resume, so you will have to update it weekly. The easy way to do this is select a sentence in the resume that is easy to rewrite. Save the original sentence, then create a rewritten sentence that says about the same thing. Once a week, pull up your profile, and exchange the sentence with the version that you rewrote, or go back to the original, alternating each week. This will have your resume updated each week and keep you on the top of the employer's and recruiter's search results.

Follow Up

I'm reminded of a story of a man who bought a lottery ticket. He was scolded by his wife, derided by fellow workers, and so he put the ticket away in a safe place and forgot about it. After his death, his children found the ticket, and found that his number had hit, and that he had left thousands of dollars unclaimed. Now, I don't condone buying lottery tickets, but, if you have already gone through the trouble of doing the work--you might as well follow up and see what the end result was! This is the piece of the job search puzzle that most people leave out. It can be the one thing that actually gets you noticed, the one thing that changes everything in your job search. After submitting your job application online, in a few days, call the main desk of the hiring company. Ask for the person that accepts the job applications for the job that you applied for, and ask them if they received your application. Take one more step and tell them that the job application engines haven't always been kind to your resume, ask if you can send a resume by email directly to this person that is in charge of receiving the job applications, and be sure to get one to him or her immediately. You are getting to know someone who is involved in the hiring process at this company, and you are getting your name and perhaps your resume in front of that person. You will have made great strides in this new job search environment just by getting to this point. But, don't stop here. Follow up in a week or so, ask if the job has been filled. If it has, ask if another one like it is likely to open up. You may not get the job that you applied for, but you may be on the top of the list for the next opportunity.

Network Support

Do you want to drastically improve your odds of being hired? It has been estimated that people who have contacts within a company, that will recommend them, are four to ten times more likely to be hired. But, finding someone in the company to recommend you might seem difficult to impossible. However, a social network that caters to job seekers and employers, may be of help in this particular endeavor. The network is called LinkedIn. If you aren't on LinkedIn yet, you need to get there. If you are there, you just may be able to pull a rabbit out of a hat. Do a people search, and search for the company name in the search bar on the LinkedIn site. Perhaps filter your results to your surrounding area so there aren't too many to sort through. You will see a list of people in LinkedIn that work at the company you have applied for. Hopefully, one of them are in your network. Perhaps they aren't on your first level, so you don't have direct access to their email address, but use the LinkedIn tools to contact them through the people that you know. If you have a friend that has a friend that works for the company, that is proxy for knowing someone that works there, and if the friend of the friend wouldn't mind passing your resume along, or turning in your name to HR, then you have improved your odds of being considered for the job by leaps and bounds.

Incorporate the above elements into your online job application process today and see what a difference it makes.

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