By Mychael Robinson, Exceptional Customer Service Representative at ZipRecruiter
I already know my tale of occupational woe is very similar to a flood of other 20-something-year-olds these days. Knock out a degree from a reputable university, something you are passionate about because you want to try and put your idealism or zeal in to practice, get out in to the real world, and then slowly start broadening that keyword search field on the job boards.
What starts as impatience evolves in to a full-blown frustration. Before you know it you are rolling out 40 resumes a day, cranking away trying to edit each cover letter so it says more about the company than you actually know. Can’t say I never sent a letter blowing a little smoke out there, but hey, when you are writing 30+ different cover letters ALL day and haven’t gotten a response you start getting desperate.
That is where I went wrong though. While it may seem like a numbers game at first I quickly learned that content is KING. Being a ZipRecruiter employee now, and initially applying through ZipRecruiter, for a ZipRecruiter position (wow say ZipRecruiter 7 times fast), I have had the chance to peruse countless resumes and cover letters. From the other side of the table, when you are literally reading hundreds of cover letters, you try and filter people out as quickly as possible. The generic response…Immediate No. Grammatical Errors…absolutely not. Those who get interviews are the people who write about something that controls the readers’ focus, makes them want more and enables the verification that this candidate is in fact A HUMAN, not a robot (or LiL Wayne).
I was getting ZipRecruiter emails every day, and if you are a job seeker this is by far one of the most advantageous tools to be utilized in the online job seeker world. Create a couple keywords, branch out to different positions, and let ZipRecruiter send you job openings. It cuts down the time you search for jobs and lets you focus more on sounding like an individual. Get out of the box — generic responses and the typical cover letter are a nightmare for hiring managers. It is not even a dime a dozen, it is more like 11.6 a dozen with the boring responses that companies have to weed through. Yes, there is a fine line between professionalism and individualism, but someone who tip-toes that line and takes a step toward exuding some application bravado might actually be appealing.