Should you apply on a company website? Yes, if you have an option

The task of job application submission is fraught with complexities. The decision-making process becomes intricate with an array of platforms, LinkedIn, job boards, and company websites, each claiming its own merits. However, upon meticulous examination of recruitment practices and applicant tracking systems, one discerns a clear advantage in opting for direct applications via a company’s website.

Submitting your job application directly through a company’s website often results in more focused attention from recruiters and allows for a tailored application that aligns closely with the company’s culture and requirements.

However, the process can be more time-consuming as it usually involves navigating through the company’s specific careers portal, and there’s a risk of limited exposure compared to mass job boards.

Applying via the company website vs the job board

Job boards

Job boards serve as a convenient marketplace for job seekers, aggregating a multitude of opportunities across sectors and geographies. The allure here is the sheer volume; you can apply to dozens of positions in a short span, maximizing the odds in a numbers game. Yet, this mass application strategy has its pitfalls. Given the volume, recruiters often employ automated filters, and your application might never reach human eyes. The impersonal nature of job boards also means you’re missing out on the opportunity to tailor your application to the specific nuances of the company and role.

Fernanda Pacheco, HR Business Partner at BHP, strongly advocates for directly contacting the hiring manager before submitting a job application. She says that this proactive approach demonstrates genuine interest and initiative and allows the applicant to gather strategic information about the role. This can be particularly beneficial for tailoring your cover letter and making your application stand out among the competition.

Langley James, an IT Recruitment firm based in London, contends that job boards are far from the ideal platform for securing top-tier talent. The firm argues that job boards are passive by nature, relying on candidates to actively search and apply, which often results in a flood of unqualified applicants. Furthermore, the impersonal approach of job boards can dilute your employer’s brand and fail to build meaningful relationships with potential candidates.

John Feldmann from The Undercover Recruiter highlights several shortcomings of job boards, one of which is posting non-existent jobs. Employers sometimes list these phantom positions to gather resumes, build databases, or generate website traffic. This deceptive practice frustrates job seekers and undermines job boards’ credibility as a reliable avenue for employment.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn, a social network turned professional hub, offers the ease of a one-click application and the added benefit of networking. However, this convenience often comes at the cost of personalization; your application is condensed into a standardized format, potentially losing its unique flair.

Tate Moyer, a Columnist for The Michigan Daily, critiques LinkedIn as a platform that perpetuates toxic hustle culture under the guise of professional development. Moyer writes that LinkedIn fosters a damaging environment of self-comparison and artificial networking, which can lead to feelings of imposter syndrome and career-related stress. According to Moyer, the platform’s emphasis on constant connectivity and self-promotion erodes the boundaries between work and personal life, contributing to a broader issue of work-life imbalance.

Jessica Hernandez from Great Resumes Fast asserts that using LinkedIn merely as a resume placeholder is a missed opportunity that can cost job seekers interviews and offers. She says that LinkedIn offers over 50 tools and features designed to accelerate job searches, yet most users are not taking full advantage of them. Hernandez suggests that active engagement on the platform, such as posting and commenting, significantly increases visibility to recruiters and opens up job opportunities that are not publicly listed.

Direct applications

Applying directly through a company’s website demands more effort as you navigate through the company’s own application system, but the payoff can be substantial. Your application lands directly in the company’s applicant tracking system, often resulting in a more thorough review. Recruiters view such applications as a strong indicator of a candidate’s genuine interest in the company, not just a job. Moreover, the company’s website often provides exclusive insights into its culture, values, and expectations, allowing you to tailor your application accordingly.

Vladislav Grabovoi, the CEO of PRpillar, a Lisbon-based ORM and SERM agency for financial companies, says that applying directly to the company, even if that may be a much-complicated task, increases your chance of getting a job almost 10 times. “That helps you to present yourself in a more individual way and show you’re interested in the particular company first, not only in getting a job or interview invitation,” he says.

While LinkedIn offers networking opportunities and job boards provide a wide array of options, applying via a company’s website is often the most strategic move for serious job seekers. It allows for a level of focus and personalization that other platforms simply can’t match, making your application more likely to stand out in a crowded field.

How to reach out to a connection about a job at their company?

Alright, let’s get real. You spot a job at a company where you know someone. Awesome, but don’t just dash off a message saying, “Hey, help me land this gig!” Be smart about it. First, research the job. Know what you’re getting into and how you fit the bill. Got it? Now you’re set to reach out.

Ping your contact, but keep it brief. A quick “Hi” to start, then dive in. Mention you’re eyeing a job at their place and you’re keen to apply. Ask them for the inside track, what’s the vibe like over there, how’s the team, you get the drift. Make it clear you’re not just fishing for a favor; you genuinely value their take on things.

Worked together before? Great, remind them. “Remember that project we aced?” It’s a smooth way to say, “I’ve got skills that could work well here.”

Say thanks, no matter what. Even a “Cheers for your time” keeps things friendly for next time. And keep them in the loop. If you apply, tell them if you get an interview or snag the job, even better. It’s not just polite; it’s smart networking.

So, bottom line: Be respectful clear, and show gratitude. It’s not just about this job; it’s about keeping doors open for the future. Got it? Good.

Should you message recruiters on LinkedIn?

Thinking of messaging recruiters on LinkedIn? Not a bad move, but let’s be clear: it’s not a golden ticket either. Recruiters are swamped—tons of messages, tons of profiles. So, if you’re gonna slide into their DMs, make it worth their while.

First off, don’t wing it. Check their profile, see what roles they’re after, and get a feel for the person you want to write for. When you do some research, be on point. Instead of a vague “Got any jobs?” try “Saw you’re on the hunt for a marketing pro. I’ve got a solid five years and some successful campaigns under my belt. Can I send you my resume?” Now, you’re not just another applicant but a potential answer to their needs.

Timing is a thing. If they just posted a position you’re into, get in there. They’re actively looking, and your message might just land at the right moment.

Keep it chill but respectful. No need for “Dear Sir/Madam” stuff. A simple “Hey [Name], how’s it going?” does the trick. And spell their name right, for crying out loud. A botched name is a one-way ticket to the ignore list.

What if you get radio silence? Don’t freak. They’re swamped, remember? No answer doesn’t mean “buzz off”; it could be a “not now.” A polite nudge won’t hurt but don’t turn into a pest. If they don’t bite after a second try, move along.

So, is messaging recruiters on LinkedIn a go? If you’re smart about it, heck yeah. Just don’t spam them and expect magic to happen. It’s one piece of the job-search puzzle, not the whole darn thing. Got it? Good.

How quickly should you respond to a recruiter?

When a recruiter reaches out to you, the timeliness of your response is a critical factor that can influence your career trajectory. The faster, the better, it’s advisable to respond within a 24-hour window. This will show them your interest in the position and convey a high level of professionalism that recruiters value.

But speed should not compromise the quality. Take the time to thoroughly read the recruiter’s message to understand what is being requested of you. Whether it’s your CV, availability for an interview, or answers to specific questions, your reply should be both prompt and substantive. A hastily constructed response can be detrimental and may reflect poorly on your candidacy. So, take enough time to construct the answer.

Even if the opportunity is not aligned with your current career objectives, it’s still important to acknowledge the recruiter’s message. A brief but polite decline, stating that you are focusing on different opportunities, maintains a professional rapport and leaves the door open for future interactions. That’s the common thing people usually don’t follow, says Julia, a recruiter from Chicago. “It’s frustrating when you’ve taken the time to write a candidate a personalized letter to explain the offer in detail and invite them to an interview, but you don’t even hear back,” she says, “It’s usually nothing more than a mild disappointment, but in tight industries, you’ll just get a bad attitude for the future.”

A prompt but well-considered response to a recruiter indicates your professionalism. It can significantly impact your prospects in a competitive job market, no matter whether you want to proceed with the offering or you aren’t interested.

Vladislav Mashirenko
Vladislav Mashirenko
I'm currently a lead editor and owner of Splaitor. Also, I'm the chief editor at Tab-tv.com.

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