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  • Job seeking: what to do when you keep getting rejections

    Job seeking: what to do when you keep getting rejections

    Before you give up hope of ever landing the career you've set your sights on, here are some tips on how to turn a string of rejections into a job offer

    Get feedback

    It's not always easy to find out where exactly you're falling short in your applications,  but this is crucial if you're determined to apply again. If you don't get actionable information in a rejection letter or verbally from your agency, write a polite email to the hiring manager/consultant asking for feedback and advice. Say why you're keen on the role or the company, and that you'd like to improve your future applications. This approach may generate useful, specific details, rather than the generic "we chose someone more experienced/qualified". For example, you might learn whether it was a lack of relevant skills or experience, or if you failed to come across well in your interview.

    Work out what attracted you to the role or company

    Understanding your interests, motivations and strengths is key. Perhaps you were fired up by the opportunity to work in a particular environment or sector, or the chance to use and develop specific skills. If you know what attracted you, it's easier to identify other companies or roles which satisfy those interests or needs.

    Think laterally. Perhaps you can apply for other roles to get an "in" to a company that particularly appeals. It's also worth considering a stepping stone approach by taking on other roles to build vital skills and gain the required experience.

    Find ways to become the ideal candidate

    What do you need to do to be a front-runner for the role? Will volunteer work or freelance projects help you keep the momentum going? Or do you need to network more and stay front of mind for when vacancies arise? Being a known quantity is preferable to being an outsider. Although you're unlikely to get the job if you're not capable of doing it, staying in touch with industry insiders (and especially people in your target companies) will help keep you visible.

    Examine other options

    Consider going for Plan B then changing back to your first choice after you've amassed experience. This can be a good idea - especially if you're at the initial stages of your career and not 100% sure on what you want to do. You can keep your options open by maintaining skills or membership of professional groups. Work out how Plan B will help you get you back on track for your first career choice, and how you're going to explain your decision to a potential employer.

    From the Guardian

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