Why Do I Keep Getting Job Application Rejections?

We have all been there, we find the perfect job, we apply, we wait… then days, or in some cases weeks later, we get the rejection confirmation.

But why?
This can be a difficult question to answer. There can be a wide range of reasons for a company not proceeding with your application for employment. Sometimes we can get frustrated with the process and quickly try to blame something or someone for our lack of progress in our job search.

So, take a deep breath and lets focus on some of the issues or problems that could be holding us back!

What are some of the reasons why you keep getting rejections?
While this is not an extensive list, there are some basic things that we can and should consider. Take a considered approach as you work through them…

Job Advertisement
An important part of the process is looking at the details contained in the job advertisement. Do you have a full understanding of the role and the specific requirements the company is looking for?

For Example: while a company may advertise for an Administration Assistant, something you may have done in the past, there might be some specific skills, tasks or experiences they are looking for that may not be obvious from the position title.

In my many years of recruitment, you will be surprised how many applications are received from individuals that don’t meet the requirements of the role, or come from completely different backgrounds and sectors.

While there is nothing wrong in crossing sectors or taking another career path, in fact it can be a very positive move, you need to understand the skills you have to offer, what is cross transferable and what skills meet the requirements of the role. You need to clearly highlight those transferable skills in your resume and cover letter, these may not be immediately clear to the recruiter or hiring manager.

If you are unsure if your skills meet the requirements of the role, why not call their HR team and ask. Tell them you want to clarify your fit for the role and have an open discussion about it. During such conversations, you can get access to key information that will allow you to fine tune your resume/cover letter to further enhance your prospects of moving to the next stage.

Check the Application Process/Requirements!
At the end of each advertisement, there is often a piece of information on how to apply. This can be a simple send your resume and cover letter by clicking the apply now button.

However, make sure you follow any specific requests. If you apply for a role that specifies “send a cover letter outlining what specifically prompted you to apply for this position with company x along with your resume”, make sure you have the appropriate content in your cover letter.

If the advertisement requests a cover letter, then do send one.

You want to show that you can follow instructions and that you have an eye for detail.

I recall one specific role that I was recruiting for, I asked for a resume, cover letter and a two page statement asking the applicant to address how their skills met the specific requirements of the role. The role was a very specific position and required exceptional attention to detail skills. Out of 70+ applicants, only 5 followed the process, and thus, demonstrated attention to detail.

Is your resume and cover letter fit for purpose?
Seems simple, right?

Well… only if they are. They need to be easy to navigate, the key information needs to be readable within 5 – 20 seconds of someone viewing the document.

If you’ve held a number of specific careers, you should have stand-alone focused resumes that allow you to truly demonstrate your specific skills and experiences to that sector with depth, rather than a wide-ranging overly general resume.

Are your contact details correct?
Basic, I know, but…
You will be surprised how many times I’ve tried to contact an applicant and they have had the wrong mobile number, and or email contacts on their documents. This simply sets the wrong impression and shows a lack of attention to detail.

Are you sending the right version of your resume/cover letter?
Before you send your application, check your resume and cover letter. You may have done some updates and you could send an old version missing key information.

When recruiting, I would receive at least 10 resumes a day that had been checked by a friend that added tracked changes. The applicant did not review or accept the changes and would simply apply with the resume with the changes, clearly highlighted… often showing grammar and spelling errors. So, always check before you apply.

Your Cover Letter, have you addressed it to the right business and person. This is something that is often forgotten. People tailor their cover letter, forget about it and a few weeks later use that cover letter to apply for a new role – this error can ruin your application chances.

Any Suggestions?
There can be a wide range of reasons why you may not be moving forward in your job search. We recommend speaking with an expert and ask them to complete a resume review/health check.

A recruitment agency, or a resume services agency could assist you with this and often the service can be free of charge.

If you consistently receive rejections, the best thing you can do is step back, and take some time to build and improve your resume and cover letter and seek out expert advice.

Benefits Of Hiring A Remote Employee

Hiring a Remote Worker may seem like a strange choice at first compared to the tried and tested routine of hiring local staff. But hiring a remote worker or giving pre-existing employees the ability to work from home or away from the office brings many benefits. Having your business web enabled and allowing your remote workers to check in at regular intervals is all that is necessary to claim these benefits.

Best of all, one does not need to run the entire business online to claim the benefits of having remote workers.

Some of the benefits of hiring remote workers includes:

REDUCED PAPER WASTE

The first obvious benefit is the reduction of paper waste due to most correspondence being sent through digital means. Cutting down on paper waste not only helps increase the efficiency of organizing documents, but also helps save money.

The lack of any physical files means that communicating documents is instantaneous, and do not incur postage or printing costs. This is hammered home by the fact that most people have smartphones, giving them instant access to emails.

The reduction of paper wastage also benefits the environment. Going paperless helps reduce the amount of trees which need to be cut and processed in order to make paper, in addition to reducing energy consumption, a business would use less energy when various printers, fax machines and copiers are inactive.

COST SAVINGS

The money which would be spent on Real Estate and the subsequent utility bills such as water, power, and maintenance would be largely reduced. Having employees work from home or away from an office would drastically reduce the amount of unscheduled absences, either due to sickness or troublesome weather.

The business is not alone in saving money, with the rise of gas prices and subsequently the prices for public transportation, coming and going to work is becoming more expensive. In a survey conducted by ConnectSolutions, the average remote worker said they saved approximately $4,600 per year by working from home.

COMMUTE-RELATED STRESS IS ELIMINATED

Not only would the business benefit from having remote workers, but the workers themselves benefit from working at home. A study conducted in Sweden discovered that a commute which is longer than 45 minutes for just one partner in a marriage increases the likelihood of the couple divorcing by 40%.

This also opens doors for potentially great employees who happen to be too far to commute or live in another country. This works especially well if you would want top-notch talent but the budgets won’t cover it properly, then you may be able to find an employee overseas with exactly what you’re looking for who is willing to work at a lower cost.

Not only would the bottom line of your business improve, so would the happiness of your employees. Happier employees are more productive, saving time, and getting more done with the extra time.

REDUCED EMPLOYEE TURNOVER

Estimates show that in order to replace an employee who makes $50,000 per year will cost your business 20% of their salary. Jobs which require high levels of training and education will have greatly increased turnover costs. Thus, many companies are using remote work in the form of a perk to retain their best talent.

Losing an employee usually disrupts productivity, according to the Reference for Business website. Once a replacement employee is hired, they will require weeks or possibly months of training before they can produce at the level of the former employee. These setbacks in time and productivity can be avoided by keeping the more experienced employee.

When you take in that 95% of employers say that remote work has a high impact on employee retention, it is no surprise that two-thirds of employees would migrate to another job to ease their commute, modernizing an old company or starting a new one with remote work taken into account is definitely a step in the right direction for both the company and the employee.

Inspiring Greatness in Your Employees

One of the most important tasks you, as a business owner, will undertake is getting employees to buy into your vision for the company and take ownership over their roles. An uninspired workforce can tank a company’s productivity and financial growth faster than almost anything else.

The people you hire to be the hands and faces of your company are out there every day representing you – they are either happily showcasing all the wonderful things about your company, or they are bringing it down with poor attitudes or a lack of enthusiasm.

So, how do you inspire greatness in those that work for you? How do you promote a company vibe of inclusion, ownership and high morale?

Give Them Unhindered Opportunities to Do Things Their Way

No two people are alike. We all approach problem solving and communication with a unique perspective and set of skills. When you require employees to only do things your way, you run the risk of potentially hindering them from doing their best work. You also keep them from bringing to the proverbial table all the unique skills and abilities that they have hiding inside.

Micromanaging employees is a fast track to workplace dissatisfaction. It not only heaps more onto your already-full plate, but it also subtly sends the message to the people you have hired that you do not trust them to figure out how to do an exceptional job on their own. However, if you did a thorough job vetting candidates when you first hired your employees, you should be able to trust them to do the job you hired them for. Not only that, you should be able to freely give them room to grow in that role and to approach their work in the way that best fits their personality and perspective.

If you hired a bubbly and vivacious client manager that loves small talk, don’t require him or her to tone it down when speaking to clients. Perhaps you would not spend five minutes chatting up a client before digging into the details of an overdue invoice or scheduling their next appointment, but that does not mean it is wrong for your employee to work that way.

By allowing them to bring their unique voice and outlook to their tasks, you empower them to take ownership over that role. Not only that, but the chances of them staying with your company long-term increase dramatically, because they will feel appreciated, needed, and invested.

Help them Learn and Include Them in Company Growth Conversations

One of the fastest ways to alienate employees and push them to become disillusioned with your company is to leave them out of conversations, procedure adjustments, and policy changes that directly affect the jobs they were hired to complete. According to Forbes,

“Employees want to create impact. Allow them to be part of the innovation-based projects in your company by letting them get their hands dirty. Ideation is important, but being part of implementing the ideas that come to life can be a more exciting and meaningful growth opportunity for your employees that will inspire them to perform… When given the right tools and resources, the best employees will instinctively challenge themselves to be more innovative in their work – and will perform better. Focus on giving your employees the opportunities to elevate their individual value while serving the needs of the company.”

When given room to grow and to develop an ownership perspective in your company, chances are good that you will eliminate the “I am just punching a timecard and then leaving” mentality that plagues so many workplaces.

Show Your Appreciation

If you want to encourage your employees and make them feel seen, respected, and valued, take time to recognize their efforts and reward a job well done. This could take the form of performance incentives, employee-of-the-month honors, quarterly staff appreciation meals – the options are truly endless. Consider your unique pool of employees and set up something that will meet them where they will appreciate it the most. Remember – while private, individual feedback and praise are important, it is equally important and perhaps even more meaningful to recognize and applaud employees in front of their peers.

“Recognition creates an emotional connection between employer and employee – a critical piece of employee engagement – and fulfills employees’ basic needs of esteem and belonging within a group. The best part is, recognition is essentially free! It can be as simple as sending a thoughtful email (or better yet, a handwritten note) to your team members calling out their amazing work. So, the question shouldn’t be “why should I recognize my people?” but “why wouldn’t I recognize my people?”

Inspiring greatness in your employees is simple; you can start today by taking the time to call out a few of your team members and speak words of encouragement and life over them and the work they are doing for your company. You can go a step further and put something larger on the company calendar – this could be a team lunch or even a morning meeting where you provide treats and go around the room recognizing everyone’s recent accomplishments.