HR Advice: Is it Appropriate to Send a CV When There’s no Job Advert?
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By Selipha Kihagi
In a tough job market like Kenya’s, you cannot afford to sit around waiting for a job to come your way. You have to wake up every morning and look for open positions like it is your daily job. And once you come across positions you are qualified for, you go ahead and submit your application.But sometimes you may not be so lucky. You will search through job websites, recruitment sites and scroll the alerts in your email day after day but you won’t find a job you can apply for.
So, what do you do when this happens? You consider sending out your CV to potential employers and recruiters, even when there is no job advert. Most job seekers today will pick up different email addresses from the internet and start sending out their CVs in the hope of finding a job. But is this right? Is it appropriate to send a CV to recruiters and employers when there’s no job advert? The answer you are looking for is yes. It is very okay to send a CV when there’s no job advert, but this too should be done in the right way.
Many candidates make the mistake of blasting out CVs with the words ‘looking for a job’ in the subject line and nothing more. If you send out your CV in this manner, nothing good will come of it. Recruiters and employers will not be very pleased when you just send them your CV and say nothing. They will also not appreciate you copying the email to 10 other people. If you want a positive outcome from your unsolicited job application, here is what to remember before sending out your CVs.
What to do Before Sending a CV When There is no Job Advert
1. Find out the name of the person you are sending the CV to
If you really want a potential employer or recruiter to open your email and actually read it, you have to address them by name. Just like you did your research and found their email address, do the same and use their names instead of the common and unflattering Dear Sir or Madam.
There is no way a recruiter will take you seriously when you cannot take the time to identify the gender of the person you are emailing. It would even be best to just say Good morning or Good Afternoon if you are not sure of the name.
2. Send in a Cover Letter alongside your CV
As I mentioned earlier, a common mistake that job seekers make when sending out unsolicited applications is not saying anything in the email body. Some just write “Looking for a Job” or “Please help me find a job” in the subject line with no other information whatsoever. Remember that they are already busy with their daily jobs and your email is just another distraction from their tasks. So make sure your email is worth the distraction.
Write a Cover Letter explaining the position you are hoping to find at the company and why you would make a great employee. Copy paste the cover letter in the email body so it becomes the first thing the recruiter sees when they open your email. They may not have the position you are looking for, but if you are impressive enough, they may recommend you for a similar position in the future.
3. Do not send in your certificates or any other documents
If you fall under the category of job seekers who send in all certificates from their primary, high school to College and University education, please stop. Unless you come across a job advert that requires your certificates as part of the application, only attach your CV and Cover Letter. Recruiters and employers only need your CV to determine if your qualified or not, and your Cover Letter is just a way to explain why you sent the CV in the first place.
4. Only send in a well-updated CV
Just because you are applying to a job that does not exist yet does not mean you are allowed to compromise on the quality of your CV. If you need a recruiter to call you back about a job, you need to customize the CV to the positions you are hoping to find. Forget generic CVs and take time to edit yours so it meets what employers are looking for in a CV.
When done right, sending your CV when there’s no job advert is considered an appropriate gesture. It could also be the saviour you need in your failed job search, as it could lead to your next better job.
Selipha is a Communications Officer at Corporate Staffing Services, a leading Recruitment firm that offers CV Writing, Job Placement & Career Advice. If you have any queries, contact [email protected]