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Why Aren’t They Calling?

Why aren’t they calling?


Do you remember the angst of dating (pre-Tinder and Match.com, that is)? You meet someone you’d like to get to know better. You think you’ve made a good first impression, so you risk giving out your phone number (your real one even!). And then you wait. And you wait some more. And eventually—after hearing NOTHING—you give up hope.


Sometimes job hunting has a similarly frustrating feel. You send off your résumé to a job posting that seem perfect for you, and . . . nothing. What’s up with that?


Like in dating, here’s a real possibility: It’s not you. It’s them.


While you may never know exactly why you weren’t called for an interview, here are five possibilities:


  • Position filled. Often, the hiring manager already knows who she wants to fill a role—maybe it’s an internal applicant or someone known to the powers-that-be through networking. In these cases, posting the job is simply an empty gesture that fulfills an HR policy or contract guideline.
  • Organizational changes. Unexpected reorganizations, budgets adjustments, and hiring freezes can eliminate the need to fill a position that was previously advertised.
  • Position nonexistent. Unscrupulous headhunters troll for résumés by placing ads for fictional positions in hopes of filling their pipeline for future contracts.
  • Sadly, some organizations are so disorganized that many weeks or even months can pass between the time a job is posted and applicants are contacted.
  • Employer quirks. Maybe the hiring manager is a Clemson fan, and you’re an Alabama grad. Maybe it’s worse than that—maybe he’s a misogynist who prefers to hire men, or he’s an ageist who won’t consider someone he thinks is too young or too old. Sadly, these people are out there.


Maybe your résumé was thoughtfully considered, and it simply didn’t make the cut. It happens. Other applicants might appear to be a better fit, so they get the calls.


It’s possible, of course, that it is you. Maybe your résumé didn’t even pass the first screen. While this seems completely disheartening, consider the opportunity for improvement! Your next chance is right around the corner, so revisit what’s in your control, starting with your résumé.


Does your résumé convey a good match between your background and the stated requirements?  Are your strengths obvious? Is your résumé rich in keywords and accomplishments? Is your value clear? If you answer “no” or “I don’t know” to any of these questions, give me a call or send me a message. Whether your résumé needs some simple formatting tweaks or an entire rewrite, I can make it more effective—relieving some of your frustration and giving you a better chance in a tough job search.


And, really, won’t it be a boost to your confidence to know it’s not you; it’s them?