Q: I have applied and applied to one company. I have tried to submit a resume through a position posted online through an industry-specific website. I have submitted a resume through a posting on Linkedin. I have emailed my resume to their general careers site. I have not heard a peep back from a recruiter or a hiring manager. I feel like it gets stuck in a black hole. All I receive back is an automated response with a message that says something like “Thanks. We will call you if we are interested.” How do I get through to this company? I have a friend who works there. Do I contact my friend?
A: It seems what you are doing is not effective. You have applied several ways electronically with limited success. As James Taylor says (or sings), “You’ve Got A Friend” so let’s use your friend. Call your friend. Maybe this posting represents an old role that is already filled. Maybe the company is fishing for additional candidates but they have already filled the position with an internal candidate. Maybe they are looking at candidates but have been overwhelmed by the number of candidates who have applied. Maybe you are not qualified. Any of these might be an option. Your friend may be able to share some insight and have some inside information on the role. Your friend may also be willing to say yes to a request like the following: “I am really interested in pursuing opportunities at ABC Co. They are investing millions in XYZ therapies, an area of great interest to me. Do you think you might be willing to walk my resume down to one of the recruiters who handles the hiring for those areas? Or the hiring managers? Or both? If my resume came hand-delivered from you, that might make all the difference in the world.” Even if the role is filled, this might be a smart tactic. If the company is of great interest to you and is in hiring mode, there may be other opportunities soon becoming available.
When an employee takes the time to hand-deliver a resume to a recruiter or hiring manager, that action sometimes makes a difference. It can differentiate your resume from the hundreds streaming in electronically. The hiring manager may still want a copy electronically, but yours is now different because it was hand-delivered by an employee.
Friends matter. Good luck. Strong professional connections make a difference.