Keeping it Professional: A Guide to Job Search Etiquette
It’s a reasonable guess that the majority of us reading this blog have a computer and probably also have a number of other technological gadgets such as a smartphone and maybe even a laptop or tablet. This kind of availability means that we’re never more than a click away from information and communication, but living and working in an increasingly digital age also has its disadvantages. The next time you’re in a public place, take a look around. We’re willing to bet that you’ll see more than a few people heads down with their technology, oblivious to everything going on around them.
This lack of awareness has somehow mutated into a gulf between what’s thought of as “normal” behavior and what is viewed as common sense and good manners. To bridge this divide it’s important to remember that there’s always a person behind the communication device and that individual should always be treated just as if they are directly in front of you. No matter if you are communicating through text, email, voicemail or face-to-face, it’s critical to always put good manners first.
This is particularly true when working with a staffing recruiter. When you’re in the job search mode, it’s easy to send out blast after blast of emails to a number of recruiters all with a singular wish of finding the right job for you. What cannot be forgotten in the process is that even if you’re looking for multiple opportunities at once, it’s still critical to tailor each communication in a way that showcases the skills and personality of the person looking to fill the job.
Putting Your Best Foot Forward
Remember the Person – Each device is run by a person with feelings. Therefore all communication should begin and end with that in mind. That includes taking time for a polite greeting and thanks for the request being asked for. Recruiters know that you’re anxious to find the right position but they are also working with multiple clients at once. Be respectful of the time involved in connecting the right person with the right job.
Don’t Burn Bridges – Recruiters love a passionate candidate but they also know if a candidate is right for the position or not. Don’t risk a possible long-term relationship by not listening to the recruiter. In this case it’s important to know when to accept no as an answer. Just because this position wasn’t right this time doesn’t mean that the next one won’t be.
Grammar and Etiquette Still Count – In an age of text speak, it’s easy to let the grammar rules go, but when you’re looking for a new job, the rules of school still apply. When you’re communicating through email, never use all capital letters. This is the written equivalent of yelling. Also, don’t forget to keep it simple. That includes attaching a resume in a Microsoft Word document, not a PDF, zip or Mac file. It is also helpful to name your resume with your full name. This makes it easier for a recruiter to find you in a database when a great job position becomes available.
Lastly, don’t forgot to showcase what makes you great. Technology has a way of making everyone look the same, leaving one resume looking much like the last. Make sure that you are well-versed on what the position is and how your skills in particular make a good fit for the job. In an age of technology overload this is how you set yourself apart.
This article is brought to you by Staffing Kansas City, a full-service Kansas City employment agency that provides contract-to-hire, direct hire and temporary employment placement services.