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Follow Human Resource’s Rules when Contacting Hiring Managers

If you’re reaching out to a hiring manager who has a job open that you want to fill, you may find this person unwilling to talk with you until after you’ve followed company procedure and actually applied. Either the company is strict about its internal processes or the job opening is so competitive that employees are overwhelmed by people seeking advice. Either way, following the rules is a wise choice.

The following four-step strategy has worked for many people in situations where a hiring manager has asked them to follow standard procedure:

  1. Do your research about the job opening and the company.

    Be sure you tailor your résumé and value statements appropriately.

  2. Apply to the job according to the company’s instructions.

    The company has either an applicant system or a designated e-mail address.

  3. Follow up immediately with your closest connection at the company.

    If you were able to get in a few info interviews, follow up with your info sources to let them know that you formally applied. If you have closer relationships, you may even ask them to flag your résumé. Flagging your résumé means a person mentions you to the HR department, which likely brings your résumé to the top of the pile.

  4. Ask the hiring manager whether you can answer any additional questions about your application.

    Often an HR department needs to go through some background checks or maybe even a phone screening with you before it passes on your application to the hiring manager. However, the hiring manager can put pressure on the HR department to speed this process up and even make sure you make it through. So stay in touch with your hiring manager contact as you go through the HR process.

If the company has a new-employee referral program, your info interview source may have a financial incentive to recommend you for a position. Find out whether the company has such a program and make sure you’re seen as the best candidate to stand behind.

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