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Have you experienced job rejection at some point in your life?  If so, don’t be discouraged.  You’re not alone.  Almost all of us have gone through the process.  It is commonly encountered, yet it can be avoided.  Though causing much disappointment, the reasons behind job rejection are oftentimes beyond your control.  Among these could be: the cancellation of the advertised position due to recession or cost-cutting; the hiring of a more qualified person; or, the hiring of somebody based on “who-he-knows” contrary to the “what-he-knows” process.


On the flip-side, there are also many factors that are within your control.  Below are common ones to take note of, with corresponding tips on how to prevent rejection:


Resumes and Cover Letters


Lengthy, irrelevant resumes – Limit your resume to 2 pages as recruiters only spend 6 seconds when screening.  Ensure that it contains all the essential elements like the keywords indicated in the job posting plus any of your specific achievements that relate to the position being applied for.  It should be error-free, no discrepancies like employment gaps, and with simple but effective format.


Irrelevant cover letters – Customize the cover letter for every job position that you apply for.  Ensure to attach your resume when you send it via email.


Incomplete applications – Read the job ad properly and make sure that you comply with what the employer requires, i.e., video resumes, work samples.


Interviews


Being late – Always come early for an interview.  Arriving late will give the employer an impression of your carelessness and unreliability.  Inform the employer ahead if you cannot be punctual on the day of the interview.


Being unprepared – Conduct a research about the company and the position being applied for before the interview.  Nonetheless, do not forget to mention what you can bring to the table as the company wants to know how they will benefit from you.


Lack of technical knowledge or giving short and non-substantive answers – Respond in more detail to technical questions.  Showcase your core competencies by elaborating your answers.  Do it in a clear, concise, and engaging manner and give specific examples of competencies by using the STAR (Situation, Task, Action, and Result) technique.


Inability to relate – You should relate your skills to the position being interviewed for or in addressing the company needs.


Lack of enthusiasm – Be energetic; show your interest and excitement about the job and the company.


Asking the wrong questions – Never ask about vacation and other related questions as this will reflect what’s on your mind.


Dressing improperly – Dress professionally and neatly as this reflects the type of personality that you have.  Cover body prints or remove piercings, if any.


If you are not successful in securing a position, don’t despair.  Never make the mistake of perceiving rejection as a sign of failure; rather, view it as a test to your patience and resilience.  Rationalize it by thinking that the firm which rejected you is the wrong company and that you deserve a better one; yet, be cognizant of the stiff competition given the large population of job searchers composed of the unemployed like you, the yearly addition of fresh graduates, and those from recent company layoffs.


Make it a habit to analyze your job application process, what worked and what did not.  Learn from each experience.  Identify your mistakes, make improvements, and move on.  There are plenty of opportunities out there.  Widen your network.  Connect and make yourself visible.  Build your core strengths, be more competitive, focus on other opportunities, and continue to present yourself to the best you can.  Don’t give up!  Sooner than you expect, a better opportunity will come along.


M. L. Galvez-Ver | Contributing Writer

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Blog, Human Resources
Finding the right employee can be difficult in even the best of circumstances. Poorly thought out search criteria can make the job that much harder by making it difficult to determine who the best available candidate is. Whenever you’re looking to fill a position, consider the following before you make a hiring decision.   Define Job Requirements or Qualifications   Be careful that your job requirements aren’t exclusionary or discriminatory towards other cultures or religions. For example, a rule that your employees must be clean-shaven. This would prevent you from hiring someone from the Sikh community even if you did not intend for it to do so.   To avoid issues with discrimination, be proactive about designing job requirements in such a way that only the absolute essentials are included: things that are required to do the job. This will ensure that your requirements fall under “bona fide” or government approved and will protect you from lawsuits and unflattering publicity.   Prepare a Detailed Job Description   A good job description will communicate the role’s responsibilities as clearly as possible to job seekers. It also allows them to get a better understanding of what their most important duties will be, and how they will be asked to prioritize. Ideally, the job description should also establish how the goals of the position contribute to the overall mission of the company.   A clear, detailed, well-written job description is not only useful for discouraging applications from less qualified applicants, but it can also help hiring managers better identify who has the most desirable characteristics for the job. For example, companies can learn more about where an employee might need more training by gauging their attributes against the job requirements.   Tailor Your Interview Questions   Avoid using the same tired old questions and instead draft specific questions based on the most important criteria outlined in your job description. You want to leave the interview with a good idea about how well the candidate will perform in the role and whether they will be a good cultural fit for your organization. You want to avoid using generic questions, so that they don’t just end up giving you the answers you want to hear.   Establish Employment Tests   Thorough background checks will protect you and your company from litigation over negligent hiring or a “failure to warn” if the employee ends up doing something violent or controversial. You have a duty of care to your employees, which means you can be held accountable if you hire someone who harms or threatens them. Aside from running the standard criminal background checks, it’s always a good idea to conduct a Google search for their LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter accounts. By doing so, you may get some insight into what type of personality the candidates have and the kinds of associations they maintain. Some firms also utilize credit checks to better gauge how stable a person is in making important decisions.   Strong search criteria will allow you to quickly identify who has the most desirable traits by providing you with a system where the most important attributes are properly emphasized and the vetting process naturally requires the candidate to showcase the knowledge you need them to have. As your criteria becomes more and more well defined, the hiring process will become proportionately easier as well. Save yourself some work later by putting in the effort to develop the right criteria early.   Salman Allidina | Contributing Writer
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