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Here's what you need to do if you don't hear back from a job

By Emilly Parris

Job searching is a stressful endeavour at the best of times, but in the era of COVID-19, things seem to be just that little bit more challenging.

For many employers, making business decisions amid uncertainty is difficult. In fact, since the coronavirus outbreak, many job applications have been put on hold as businesses adjust. If this has been your experience, it can be tricky to figure out how to tactfully approach the situation. Today, Skillstalk covers four tips to help you navigate the application process if you don’t hear back from a job.

If you’re in the midst of a job hunt, remember you’re not alone and although the process can be frustrating, here are some ways you can successfully manage it.

1. Follow up within a reasonable timeframe.

It may feel daunting to send a follow up email or make a phone call, but it is perfectly reasonable to request information about the status of your application. If the employer did not give a definitive date, you can check in with them a week after your interview

Keep your email short and polite. If you don’t hear back after two or three follow-up attempts, it’s probably best to leave it and move on. Some hiring managers are simply unable to respond to all enquiries, so it’s safe to say that no response still counts as a response.

2. Optimise your resume and cover letter.

optimising resume concept

This is more of a preparation tip but optimising your resume and cover letter for the role you’re applying for will increase the likelihood that you will hear back from the employer. This is because many businesses utilise AI software to track keywords to help reduce the time it takes for a human to review applications. 

The best thing to do is tailor your resume to include the most relevant skills you’ll need to perform the role you’re applying for. When you’re done, have someone look over it for spelling or grammatical errors.

Many job seekers inaccurately assume that if a job listing has thousands of applications, they do not stand a chance. In fact, too many applicants lack the appropriate skills and are ultimately unsuitable candidates. Tailoring your resume can help with future job applications and ensure you stay at the top of the pile.

3. Go with your gut.

If you think the interview went well and you believe you are highly qualified for the role, it’s worth making at least three outreach attempts to ensure you are noticed by the right person. 

However, if you received a less than warm reception it may be best to move on. Afterall, your gut may be telling you what you already know. Do not be discouraged if things don’t progress further; every interview is a chance to improve your interviewing skills, learn about the recruitment process and bring you closer to finding the job you’re meant for.

4. Stay positive and continue your job search. 

positivity concept

When you don’t hear back from an employer, it’s easy to start doubting yourself and losing your confidence. In an ideal world, we would receive a yes or no soon after the interview but this is not always the case. Many companies have a small HR department handling the applicant process with more candidates than they can manage. Others have a rigorous, months-long recruitment process.

Try not to take it personally if you do not hear back—there are plenty of other opportunities out there right now just as there will be in the future. Continue applying, reaching out to companies and optimising your resume and before long, your efforts will be well worth it when you find the job of your dreams.

Is now the best time to invest in your future?

Some experts say that although the recession caused by COVID-19 presents many challenges for job seekers, pursuing study could be a good alternative if you are in an industry that is affected.

By upskilling now, you can delay entering the job market until things return to normal and emerge into a recovering economy armed with all the right skills to succeed.
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