Are electronic job applications a black hole?
For our patrons who have already attended John Crant's Self Recruiter lectures at the Science, Industry and Business Library, you already know that he believes the "Submit" button on applications is the company's way of reminding you who is in charge of the process. With some online job applications taking as long as two hours to complete, job seekers should consider whether or not the whole process is worthwhile.
Here are a few things to consider before you do all that work to get to "Submit":
Consider the Source
Postings directly from employers (rather than search firms or temporary agencies) are more likely to lead to a real job. Try sites like LinkUp and JobCentral where you can search postings directly on employer sites using key words and other criteria instead of visiting each employer's site individually.
The longer a job has been posted, the more likely the position has already been filled or the employer decided not to fill it. Concentrate on positions that have been up for 14 days or less. Anything older than that probably isn't a good lead.
Use LinkedIn or the company website to identify either the hiring manager or someone else familiar with the search and ask about the status of the search: are they still reviewing resumes or wrapping-up interviews? It's not as good as hearing that you're hired or that you'll get an interview, but at least you will have a better idea of what is going on with your application.