by Kathy Sweeney, NCRW, CPRW, CEIC, CCM
The fastest way to respond to Internet
job listings is to e-mail your cover letter and resume to
the person or organization indicated. However, if you mess
up the process, the best resume in the world still won't get
you where you want to be.
As with everything else,
there are some simple rules to follow before you hit the "send"
1. Have a properly formatted
e-mail / online resume. If you copy and paste the text of
your designed resume into the body of an e-mail message or
into an online form, and just send it without preparation,
when it reaches the recipient the formatting will be such
a mess it will probably be unreadable, and will then be deleted.
You will need to convert your resume to an ASCII
2. If requested to send
your resume via email, always send your resume in the body
of the e-mail message, not as an attachment, unless otherwise
specified. You have about 20 seconds to catch the eye
of the recipient and to get him or her to read your resume.
If you force the recipient
to find and open an attachment, zip! Your 20 seconds are over
before they even start. Put the resume right in the message
so the reader will see it as soon as he or she opens the message.
This technique also helps you get through e-mail systems set
to refuse attachments in this day of rampant computer viruses.
If the ad requests that
you DO send an attachment, do not send .pdf formats, as they
are not able to be scanned into an employer's back-end search
systems. The format should be sent in
a MS Word .doc or .docx format.
3. Include a cover letter
whether or not you are responding to an advertised opening,
and address it to the person or organization you are contacting.
Employers get a lot of unsolicited
resumes sent to them with nothing more than a "here's my resume,
please tell me if you have any jobs I might fill." Not only
does this tell them you know nothing about what they do and
who they are, but you have also given them absolutely no desire
to open your resume. Sell it in the email!
4. If responding to an advertisement,
always use the advertised job title or job code as the "Subject"
of your e-mail message. This makes it easy for your e-mail
to be sorted and routed to the appropriate persons. If you
are "cold calling," put a few words stating your objective
in the "Subject" line.
5. Read the application
instructions included in any job advertisement and follow
them. Maybe you need to send it to a particular e-mail address.
Perhaps you need to apply through their web site using a specific
code. Or just maybe the employer actually wants you to submit
your resume via e-mail as a Word attachment. Whatever they
want you must do. You don't want your application delayed
because it went in the wrong direction, and you don't want
to be regarded as someone who doesn't follow directions.
Just remember, it only
takes a couple of seconds for someone to delete an e-mail
message, and it will happen if your info ends up on the wrong
desktop or if you make someone's job harder. Think before
Is your resume in the proper
format for online job postings? If not, order
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