TOP TEN REASONS WHY YOU WON’T GET A REPLY TO YOUR TV JOB APPLICATION
“It really saps my morale and sometimes I can get quite upset about it. Am I of no value to anyone out there? I could send dozens of emails in a week and the silence is deafening”.
So says one very disheartened job applicant.
So why don’t you get a reply to your application for that TV job? Let me count the whys:
What you say about the lack of replies to your job applications:
We opened up this topic on our Facebook page and got a number of interesting and heartfelt comments. Go HERE to read them and join in the conversation. The upshot really is that applicants feel disheartened in an already difficult job market by the lack of acknowledgement.
As Grant Crockett says, “A response is better than no response at all. Even if it is the slightly disingenuous ‘We shall keep your details on file for the future’. “
Danielle Cooper adds: “It leaves one wondering if anybody is looking at one’s application and evaluating it in any detail. A personal response at least gives the impression that we are being considered as an individual, on our individual merits.”
Markus Black says he hasn’t had ANY replies, negative or positive, in over 6 months while others are still waiting for replies having asked a production company several times for an answer about their application. Sam says, “It smacked of not caring, when as an applicant I really, really cared about that job.”
Chris Dodd points out the BBC outsource their recruitment to Capita making the process even further removed from the production.
Antonella di Franco makes a very good point that everyone should heed: “It helps a lot taking into consideration that at the end of the day the recruiters are people too, who might have a very busy workload and might get bored reading 20-30 CV’s a day and might decline one just after few seconds of a skim through. I once met a recruitment consultant who told me they’re so busy they literally have no time to send rejection/update emails to candidates even if they wanted to. Thinking that it’s nothing personal helped me a lot with coping with the stress of rejections.”
That’s an important fact to remember. It is very rarely personal so don’t take it personally. Not receiving a response to your application doesn’t mean you have no value or that you are never going to get a job. It just means recruiters out there are spoiled for choice and are far too busy, lazy or forgetful to send that reply.
We did a poll on the site asking how often you got a reply when applying for an advertised job in TV. Forty four percent of you have NEVER had a reply to your job applications and NONE of you have always had a response to every application. The results were as follows:
Sometimes (1 in 4 applications): 52%
Never (having applied for over 10 jobs): 26%
Never (having applied for under 10 jobs): 18%
Mostly (1 in 2 job applications): 3%
Always: the poll gave us a response of 1% but the number of votes cast was 0. That’s a Zero % in my eyes!
What would have been more interesting is asking how many applicants having been to an interview got a reply. Maybe we’ll do that now….
What you need to do to get noticed:
Write a compelling CV and covering letter. It really, really matters! There is free advice on this site on writing CVs so go check those out or invest in my eBook, An Expert’s Guide to Getting into TV which has detailed advice and before & after examples of CVs, plus advice on covering letters. If you want me to do your CV for you go HERE for details.
Find a personal contact if at all possible and use it: however tenuous the link saying ‘so-and-so” suggested I send you my CV will help (assuming they know “so-and-so”!). Go to networking events and hope to engineer a meeting with a TV employer and ask you can send them your CV. Tap up everyone you meet in a work experience placement for a contact.
Be polite: it works both ways. Use charm in your application and on the telephone. Call for a response if you don’t get one in writing and charm the person who answers the phone in the hope they may be able to pass you on to the relevant person or find the information for you.
General feedback and Advice:
Many of you have been completing application forms for various training or networking opportunities, including the BBC’s highly coveted Production Talent Pool. Again it would be impossible for the BBC to provide detailed feedback to every applicant but BBC Academy Trainee Scheme Coordinator, Don Kong has provided some advice that could be very useful for your next application. You can find his blog here: Application Advice. (http://www.bbc.co.uk/academy/news/view/application_advice)
And be assured that you are not alone and it is not only entry-level candidates who get no answer. A very experienced friend of mine applied for a job with a major broadcaster, got an interview and was invited back for a second interview. She had to ask twice for a response, waited months to find out what was going on only to be told eventually (after nagging for a reply) that the job was being outsourced and no longer theirs to fill!
Getting no response to an application is understandable. Getting no response once you’ve been to interview, not once but twice, is unforgivable!
Keep trying. Keep applying. Keep learning – and Good Luck!
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