How many ‘tabs’ are open on your desktop right now as you read this? How many unread emails are in your inbox that are waiting for you? Do you have any voicemails or messages that you need to listen to on your mobile phone or desk phone? When does the post arrive again at your desk?
I am not going to repeat the MANY articles out there with helpful tips on managing your communication channels (you can open up another tab and Google search on that, leading to probably one or more other tabs afterwards!), rather I am going to speak to the candidates out there who may hopefully read this and may even find something useful from my article.
Yes, it can be overwhelming when you think about looking for a role, never mind applying for one – ‘how easy is it to apply’, ‘who do I speak to if I have a question’, ‘where can I research on the company in case I get an interview’ etc. etc. As much as we say that it easy to find out the information you are after, you are then bombarded with the choices of channels to go down – do I call, do I email the general email address, do I seek out the individuals on LinkedIn, do I ‘tweet’ someone I find in the company I am applying to, do I write a letter etc.
As much as it is sensible to plan your roles that you want to apply for and plan your CV and covering letter, it is also very sensible to plan how you are going to stay in regular contact with the company or companies you are applying to – this is as much for your frame of mind as it will be for those considering your application. After all, you do not want to come across as a pest, chasing everyone on all available media, but equally you don’t want to go silent after you apply, because you want to appear keen for their consideration.
The sensible course of action would be to apply and then follow up with a question about timescales if none is forthcoming to you straight away. Then you can plan your regular communications with that company accordingly. It is this careful and considered strategy that will set you apart from the (sometimes) manic calls/emails/tweets that company recruitment or HR teams can sometimes receive, from candidates who appear ‘unorganised’ and in the case of someone I recently spoke to, have forgotten that they spoke with the company that same morning already.
If the company you have applied to is clear with you on the timescales you can expect to hear anything back, then you the candidate, can be clear on when you need to follow up with your chosen communication with your chosen communicating channel.
- If you apply, make sure you find out the timescales of your application process
- No matter how short or long this may take, plan your communications with the company accordingly
- Do your research into the Company – if you get an automated reply, that is fine, but maybe find out behind the scenes who the hiring manager or HR or Recruitment team may be in that company in case you do need to personalise a communication
- Don’t become a ‘pest’ – choose the right channel and choose the right times to communicate