It is very tempting for a Job Seeker to want to “Mass Mail” their resume to as many prospective employers as possible. For the vast majority of Job Seekers an internal clock of needing or wanting to find a new position has begun ticking and the race has begun. This may be because of unemployment, weak job security in a current position, or the mental health strain of being in a position that is not working for you.
A “Mass Mailing” approach to Job Seeking involves identifying companies of interest to you and sending them a Resume. These companies that receive your resume may or may not have a current opening and most likely have not received any networking efforts from you.
In a “Mass Mailing” effort, the identified companies can come from a variety of sources, some as general as the phone book. A “Mass Mailing” rarely receives a more focused effort than a Business Directory of companies within an industry.
Positives in “Mass Mailing”:
• Reach a Large Group of Employers – If you believe in the numbers game and by this I mean the more contacts made the greater chance of a “sale”, then this is the right approach for you.
• Job Search Kick Start – This approach allows you to start your job search running and if you are lucky to get some immediate interest then you have placed your job search on a fast track.
• Requires a Strong Cover Letter – Since the recipient of this Resume does not know you and may not even have advertised an opening then your Cover Letter must grab their attention. This document must be written like a Sales Marketing document clearly outlining who you are and why this organization should consider you. If you are a regular reader of this column, I am a big advocate of a strong Cover Letter.
Negatives In “Mass Mailing”:
• Response Rate: A Mass Mailing receives a very low response rate.Why?
> Lack of Openings – An organization may not have an opening that matches your Resume.
> No Name Recognition – A Recruiter will have no idea who you are and will generally just file your Resume. If your Resume has been received unsolicited, many companies will destroy your documents rather than have to track and store as an accepted Resume.
• Incorrect Recipient – Many times in a “Mass Mailing” a person addresses the document to Human Resources or a person in the Department you hope is the correct individual. When you do this, the document may change hands many times in the process of finding its correct home. During that time, the opportunity for misfiling or mishandling is great.
• Cost – Postage for sending a Resume and Cover is at minimum 55 cents a letter and even more if you place in a larger envelope. Add in the cost of good paper and envelopes along with fresh ink and a “Mass Mailing” can be a money burden.
• Inefficient Use of Time – The time spent sending out all of these letters could be spent networking with people who may have leads or studying RochesterJobs.com for organizations with legitimate opportunities. This creates a “passive” job search for you. The inpiduals who are most successful are the people who are actively reaching out, studying leads, and networking.
• Inability to Follow-Up – When you “Mass Mail”, you run the risk of missing opportunities because you cannot strategically follow-up. An aggressive “Mass Mailing” gives you no idea regarding who is a hot lead and who is not. You then run a “scatter shot” follow-up campaign that may not hit organizations that have opportunities in your field.
If you are going to run a “Mass Mail” campaign, keep a good record of all organizations that you have sent a Resume. This way you will not duplicate your efforts on your next mailing and also have some level of recall if they contact you.
Companies have even sprouted that will “Mass Mail” your resume for you. These “Blast Mail” services for a fee will send your resume to an address list of organizations. Before going this route, make sure that you are comfortable with their address list so that the companies you wish to reach will be included. You will also want to make sure employers you are avoiding, especially in a confidential search, are not included. Keep in mind that in today’s world of e-mail overload and viruses, an unsolicited e-mail is most likely going to be deleted even before opening. I don’t have a high level of enthusiasm regarding these services.
Although there are some merits to “Mass Mailing” a Resume, for most people I view this practice as an ineffective use of a Job Seekers precious time. I advocate targeted networking, chasing legitimate leads, and a thorough weekly review of RochesterJobs.com.
As always, best of luck in your job search.
The following has been prepared for the general information of WNYJobs readers. It is not meant to provide advice with respect to any specific legal or policy matter and should not be acted upon without verification by the reader.
WNY Human Resources Professional
Feel free to contact Joe Stein regarding questions or comments at: