How Employers Respond to Excellent Resumes

This week, the LiveCareer team reached out to some of the hiring managers on our list of professional contacts in order to ask them a simple question: How do they respond when they find a resume that seems like a promising match for an open position? Do they rush to close the deal or move forward with cautious optimism? Do they open their checkbooks or do they prepare for a scrappy negotiation process? Do they say goodbye to second place runners-up, or do they keep them hanging on the line until the entire process is complete? Here are some of the answers we received from managers across a range of industries.

Melissa, Tech Support

“To be honest, we rarely find one candidate who has everything. Usually choosing a candidate is like buying a house—every top contender has something to offer that the others don’t. This one has the tech skills that we need but not the leadership skills, that one has the right leadership skills and personality but she costs too much, and a third candidate is affordable and has promise, but not enough experience to provide a reliable track record. In the end, we gather our top three or four and then just roll the dice and hope for the best.” 

Aaron, Healthcare

“When we see a candidate who has everything we’re looking for, we act fast. We’ve learned from the mistakes of the past, and we’ve watched too many talented applicants get swept away by other offers while we hemmed and hawed. It’s always disappointing when that happens. So when we see a candidate with promise, we put the wheels in motion and lock down the offer right away. If we tell you we like your resume and want to meet you in person, we’re not kidding. We’re ready to give you the benefit of the doubt.”

Eliza, Manufacturing

“It’s very hard to find candidates who have the machine tooling and materials handling skill sets we need. So when we find a resume that offers what we’re looking for, we get extremely excited. We pass the resume around the office, look the person up online, and talk about them exhaustively before we even meet them.” 

Fatima, Finance/Accounting

When I see a resume I like, I try not to get too excited about it. If a candidate is unusually perfect, I look closely for a catch. And when candidates come in for interviews, my team and I keep an eagle eye out for fakers, exaggerators, and those with lots of bluster and no substance. That kind of nonsense might get you in the door, but it won’t get you past the interview process, and it definitely won’t land you the job.

Angel, Pharmaceutical Sales

I know candidates like to picture us jumping up from our chairs and yelling “stop the presses!” when we see a promising resume. And we do that…sometimes. But most of the time we keep cool heads , read the supporting materials  carefully (including cover letters) and conduct an online search before we take the next step. And even when that happens, we don’t get truly swept away by a candidate until we know that she’s likely to accept our offer.

A Great Resume Paves the Way for a Lasting Relationship

Before you can convince hiring managers to take the next step, you’ll need to create a document that attracts their attention and sets you apart from the crowd. Visit LiveCareer for tools, guidelines, and job search support. 

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