Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Job Applications: What's The Limit?

job application

Yesterday, I briefly mentioned that filling out too many job applications was not a wise thing to do.  Hopefully that tidbit piqued your interest, because I want to discuss that thought further today. 

Why shouldn't you apply for as many jobs as you want?  It's pretty simple, actually: It's not the best use of your time.  For one thing, it's highly unlikely that every nonprofit job you come across will be the best fit for you.  But even if that does happen, you want to keep your job applications at a reasonable number simply so you can remember the details of each organization.  It can be very easy for jobs to simply blend together in your mind if you apply for too many of them.  Needless to say, this won't be helpful if you go in for an interview.  In the end, it all comes down to time management.  Instead of focusing on a large number of jobs, you will find it is more efficient to deal with a smaller number of them so you have more time to do better research on each of the companies.

So now, the question becomes how much is too much?  What is an appropriate number of jobs to apply for in a given week?  I'm not sure there's a perfect number out there, but three or four a week seems like a reasonable number to me.  It really comes down to what is comfortable for you.  I would say, however, that more than six a week is pushing it.  At that point, you will be dealing with too much information and it might start to get overwhelming. 

Limiting your job applications might seem counter productive, but it's really the best thing for your job search.  You'll have more time to write quality resumes and cover letters for each job, and being selective will allow you to go after the jobs that will be the best fit for your skill set.  Do you have any suggestions on a number of jobs to apply to?  Or do you not agree that there should be a limit?  Whatever the case, leave your comments below.

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