We probably tell you to customise your cover letter or tailor the summary in your CV every other week. But how many of you actually do it? At the expense of exposing myself as a hypocrite, I admit that I sure don't. But acceptance is the first step to recovery. And understanding is the first step to acceptance. So let's get to the root of the problem. Here are three things you are probably telling yourself to avoid tailoring your job application.
1. Nobody's going to look at it anyway
Jobvite's 2015 Recruiter Nation Survey found that 55% of hiring manages do not read cover letters. You probably didn't need a well-researched survey to know that. The good stuff's under the work experience and academic qualifications sections of your CV after all. But that leaves 45% of the recruiters who do read them. If your boss said you have a 45% of getting a raise if you start showing up on time, you'd do it. So start taking your cover letter seriously.
2. You want to be the first one in
And this applies even more if the position in question takes rolling deadlines or is particularly attractive. There's going to be hundreds of applications and the best take deadlines seriously, right? But isn't that more reason to perfect your application so that the person looking at it likes what he or she sees? There will always be competition. It has less to do with how quickly you apply than how good it looks/reads. Think of it this way: the first applications to land are always rushed. They run the risk of having errors or looking sloppy. And there is always time. Openings don't disappear overnight. You could be the most qualified person applying, but you will be upstaged by a more organised and precise candidate.
3. You don't really know what the company wants
How many of us look at the website of the company they're applying to? If you're in the middle of a job search and you're sending out applications to 15 different organisations, chances are you'll overlook this step. I get it, it's bothersome to take note of what every single employer wants, but the more closely you can align your application with the tone of the organisation and the requirements of the position, the more of a match you'll be to the guy who's reading it.
Putting in the extra effort to customise is worth every second of your time it takes. Hope this article has guilt-tripped you into taking the fate of your application into your own hands. It's sure guilt-tripped me!