Search and Subject: Emailing Resumes

In the modern world, mailing a resume through the postal service has become almost obsolete. Today email is the preferred delivery method. Job applicants email resumes in response to a job posting or send out resumes to a networking contact, recruiter, or hiring manager.  While this has been shown to have its successes, it has also shown to be a waste of time.  It essentially depends on how good the resume is and how suitable the resume suits the job posting.

Often people assume that the person receiving the email has only one job posting open or will intuitively understand which job is being applied.  This is not always the case. Too often those subject links can make the message look like spam or, worse, a malware-laden message, and may be deleted. Certainly they are often ignored because they put the burden on the recipient for figuring out why the message was sent and what it is about. People receive an average of 75 emails a day according to statistics.  Anyone posting a job online could easily receive an additional 100 messages a day from responses to the posting.  This clogs your inbox and does not allow a job applicant to focus on the important inquiries.

Unless someone applies for a job on a job board, most resumes are sent via email, and they end up sitting in someone’s inbox or in an email folder somewhere on their computer. Sometimes they are read immediately. Often, they sit in that inbox or folder, possibly for days or weeks. How does your message with your resume get found and read eventually? The email software’s search function is frequently the tool used to sift through messages to find the appropriate applicants and resumes.

Few of us think about the email search function when we send our resumes (or other email) messages.  To get a job via email, messages must be read, to be read, messages must be found, and to be found, our messages must be something that can be found and clearly on topic for the job being posted.

For the resume to be found, the subject of the email must be effective. It must clearly communicate to the recipient the reason that the message should be opened. So, the subject line is critical to the effectiveness of the message. ”Resume attached” and “Your job opening” don’t make the cut. The person scanning the inbox or using the email search function is looking for specific words in the subject of a message. Or, the email search function may also be used to find specific words in the content of the message. So, keep that in mind when you write your email message.

Since the email search function usually allows searching through only message subjects or through the text in the body of the message covers both of those bases with your email message. Keep in mind too, searches focus on the subject lines of the messages because that is usually the quickest search to perform.

To be sure that your message appears in a search through message subjects, think about the keywords that would be relevant for an employer searching through all those email messages to find the ones from people applying for a specific job opening?  Include the job title used by the employer posting the job. Using the word “resume” highlights that the message is from someone who is interested in applying for a position. Using the word “resume” also includes a very valuable keyword in the subject line. This ensures that the message appears in search results even on a general search for resumes.

Emails have emerged as effective conduits to prospective employers.  Knowing how to respond to job posting through the search and subject identifiers, will enhance your chances of finding that perfect job.

Source: “No Response to Your Emailed Resumes?, “ How to Get Your Resume Noticed.” Work Coach Cafe. Web. 15 Nov. 2012.

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