Leveraging a referral to a Hiring Manager

Franklin Paterson Company Inc. Your One-Stop career boutique for resume writing, interview preparation and career strategy consulting.

Have you noticed that companies are beginning to list more jobs and the interviewing pace has picked up?

But, as mentioned in my last post, while there may be fewer job seekers on the market, the competition is stiffer, so a failure to follow the job application and interviewing rules is going to be far more obvious.

This is no time for the faint-hearted, budgets have been approved and the jobs that are available are part of a company’s long-term strategy, so there will be fierce competition.

You will also need to get by a natural adversary, the resume gatekeeper, whose sole purpose it appears is to decide whether your resume or your expected phone call will get through to the Recruiter or the Hiring Manager.

Here are a few tips that can help:
1. Do not address your cover letter, intro, or follow-up email with: “To whom it may concern”, the answer to that intro is – nobody. Use Dear Hiring Manager, Dear Recruiter, or the person’s name if available, or a simple: Hello, I am seeking a. XXX position (add the remainder of your cover letter here)

2. If you need to be a Confidential Job Seeker, please put somewhere prominent in your application an indication that you are actively seeking a new position. The word confidential can be off-putting, it may appear that you are not actively seeking a new position, so you must make the extra effort to alert the reader once they open your resume that you are actively job seeking immediately

3. When posting your resume on the job boards, follow the job application directions, before calling the person your colleague has referred you to.

4. If you have been directly referred to an HR person or to the manager, try to call from a place other than your desk at work or a noisy eatery. You cannot charm a busy recruiter, no matter how great your phone skills, if you cannot be heard properly.

Please call at the designated time and have your resume at hand. The company contact will do a better job interacting with you if you have forwarded your updated resume, and or created a job application in advance of the call.

If they should ask you to forward the document to them directly please enquire regarding the format they would prefer, please follow the instructions do not send a locked .pdf or a Dropbox file unless you are especially asked to do so.

Remember to ask your friend how the person’s name is pronounced, if asked to create an online application before the call or in-person meeting; please do so and do it properly and completely.

Follow up later with a phone call to give feedback regarding the call results. Hang in there… This could still be your year!!!!