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How does this screening process affect you? Let's say that the employer wanted to read 100 resumes in order to invite 10 people to an interview with the goal of hiring one person. If computer searches didn't exist, an employee of Someco would quickly scan the hundreds of resumes it receives each week and put most in the reject pile. Sheer volume would necessitate this. The YES and MAYBE piles would be composed of cover letters and resumes that stood out by presenting plausible match with the firm's needs. Human beings are fallible, especially when under stress and time constraints. The computer's ability to scan and store thousands of resumes may mean that your application will get more attention than would be possible in a traditional search.
Advantages of computerized job searches
Where computer search capability does exist, you have these potential advantages.
Timing issues are minimized. Your letters and resumes can be stored for an extended period of time. This is particularly useful if you are interested in a position that is not available at the time your application-is sent.
Relaxed space constraints : You can write a longer resume, cover letter or cover letter/resume combination because electronic applicants usually don't need to follow the general one-page rule of paper submissions.
Multiple employers : Electronic submissions to databases can be accessed by many employers, including those you may not have identified yourself.
You could also experience these disadvantages in a computerized applicant search:
Motivation : Your motivation for wanting a particular kind of job with a particular kind of company isn't likely to be hit by the computer during an initial search.
Soft skills : Your work ethic and interpersonal skills are harder to convey to a computer than to a person
We have seen how the Job Search Club learned to identify a wealth of potential employers, both large and small. By using the two-criteria method, JSC members were able to prioritize their outreach effort and develop mailing lists of a manageable size.
Since the JSC has learned how to write a prototype cover letter as a basis for writing to many potential employers, writing to 100 firms sharing some basic similarity (job type, industry, geography) is not an impossible task.
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