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by Ginger Robitaille, PHR COO & HR Generalist

On a weekly basis, I hear the question from job seekers, “Why do I have to play a game to get a job? Between the cumbersome online systems, the painstaking keyword matches, and the outrageous list of requirements for each job, how can I ever expect to be considered for a position?!”

Fear not, job seekers, and read on. I know how much of this feels like a game (I have been in your shoes), but let me put your mind a bit at ease and take you inside the mind of the recruiter and hiring manager.

Of course, we want the best pool of candidates to fill our open positions, but sometimes we don’t actually know exactly what we want. We know what type of person and skill set has been successful in our open position in the past, so we start there with our list of requirements and needs. Now, if it’s a new position for our company, we really don’t know what we need! We have an idea, and after we start talking to applicants, we are able to solidify what is really required. That didn’t provide you any comfort, did it? Well, take heart: the takeaway here is that even if you don’t align perfectly with the job posting or you’re lacking some of the requirements listed, you still have the opportunity to be considered for the position.

We know that most applicants are not going to meet all of our requirements, so know that we are either prepared to compromise and/or train on certain areas where you may also be lacking some experience. If you meet around 60% of the requirements, it is worth your time applying, and it’s worth our time reviewing your resume and possibly having that initial phone conversation.

Now, I will say that we don’t look at every resume that comes through our portal when we start to receive hundreds or applicants for one position (which is starting to happen with the current unemployment rate). So, have patience with us as we do still have to do some weeding through all the applications. And if you are applying just to fill your “contacts” requirement for your unemployment benefits, please don’t (unless you actually meet that 60% mark). Know that this is “the game” that irritates us! You don’t want us wasting your time, so don’t waste ours.

If you would like more tips like this or need some one-on-one support to kick-start your job search, check out our webpage, visit our job seeker services page, and follow us on social media.

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