June 17, 2013, 1:27 PM — You can have the best, most effective resume in the world, but if it never gets opened, you’ll never get an interview - nevermind hired.
Getting past the company gatekeeper and into the inbox of someone who matters is one of the top two challenges job seekers encounter, says career coach and author Kathleen Brady:
"Even if you play all of your best cards, chances are you will be stopped at the gate at least 50% of the time. But it’s essential to keep plugging beyond simply sending your résumé through an automated website or via email. ‘If you do nothing, nothing will happen,' “ she says. Many people don’t realize that it’s the gatekeeper who is holding back their chances. 'For a lot of these positions, they’re getting 600-700 resumes,' she notes. “If someone the organization knows and trusts recommends you, it can move you to the top of the pile.' "
How to get your resume on top:
- Examine your friends, family and alumni network. Someone you know could get your resume an advantage.
- Use LinkedIn. It's free and it works. You can locate connections within the prospective company and even find out if the job is still open - saving you valuable time.
- Dip deep on the company Web site. Find the name of potential contacts on the investor relations page, as well as the news page. Also, Google the company name and "annual report." Then, plug those names into LinkedIn and see if you have a tie, which could yield direct access to a highly placed person.