Resume Tracking System For Job Seekers
© David Alan
All Rights Reserved
A resume tracking system is usually thought of as a tool employed by the personnel
departments to keep track of the avalanche of resumes they receive on a daily basis. And of course, there are such
animals. But there's another species of resume tracker – this one geared for job seekers.
Resume Tracking for Job Seekers – But Why?
Even a few years ago, there was not much need for a tool to track resume submissions. But
thanks to the toughest employment market in decades, all that's changed. Not only has the length of time necessary
for a successful job search expanded, but the Internet and modern recruiting methods have effectively put a stake
through the heart of the old "generalist" resume. Witness the rise of the targeted resume.
Why does a targeted resume require a tracking system? Well, one such resume doesn't. But the
whole point of a targeted resume campaign is to develop resumes to be sent on single, specific missions. If that
mission doesn't pan out (i.e., land an interview), it's back to the drawing board and the crafting of a second
targeted resume, and a third, and a forth, etc. A job seeker in serious campaign mode can easily and quickly become
overwhelmed with just the organization of it all. To do it right, a job seeker needs to...
- Create and maintain updates to a master resume, which will become
the foundation to each subsequent targeted resume.
- Develop individualized, targeted resumes (built from copies of the
"master" resume) that each focus on a particular job opening. You might need to craft just 5 targeted resumes
before an interview generates an offer you can live with. Then again, you might need to craft 50 or 100
targeted resumes before your campaign ends in an offer.
- Know who got what. Because regardless of the number of resumes
circulating about with your name at the top, once you get a call from an interested employer, you need to know
which version they're holding. You need to know so that you can a) talk intelligently, and b) take additional
hard copies of that version to the subsequent interview.
Resume Tracking - It's Not Rocket Science
No, it's not rocket science. It's fairly straightforward, and if you've got good
organizational skills and a bit of computer savvy, you can devise a system yourself that should suffice. But it is
one more burden in a long line of burdens associated with a job search.
Resume Builders To The Rescue
The good news is, there are a number of companies with solutions to the burden. Most offer
resume tracking tools as a side service to their primary focus, resume building, which coincidently may be
something that could prove helpful in its own right.
Of the resume builders we've reviewed, two stand out for their superior resume tracking
tools. Here they are, in order of their star ranking...
We particularly like Pongo for its ease of use and intuitive interface. Pongo's tracker
automatically stores the resume version, as well as contact information for the emails and faxes you send from
their site (which are additional services at no extra charge). And you can enter your own information for resumes
you deliver via mail or in person. At less than $15 per month, the service pays for itself if you only send out a
couple of faxes. Try it free and see what you think.
Whether you devise your own system of resume tracking or lighten your burden with a 3rd
party product like Pongo, tracking the who-what-when and where of resume submissions will help keep your
targeted job search campaign from devolving into a nightmare.
David Alan Carter is a former headhunter and the founder of Resume One
of Cincinnati. For more than ten years, he personally crafted thousands of resumes for satisfied clients from all
occupational walks of life -- entry level to executive.
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