Over the last few decades, the job-hunting market has moved pretty much exclusively online. Gone are the days where job applicants would shuffle from business to business, resume in hand, trying to get themselves seen by the HR Manager. While many of us are thankful for the conveniences of applying digitally to jobs there are a few skills that every job seeker should know in order to maximize their chances of getting hired in a digital market. We have gained convenience but we have lost some of the personal touches that came with dropping off a resume in person. Now we need to learn the best ways to sell ourselves without ever meeting the person to whom we are selling.
One important aspect of this is email etiquette. Knowing the ins and outs of how to communicate clearly and effectively over email can go a long way to helping you land or even maintain work. Here are some tips:
Know Your Audience
Before you start ask yourself; who are you sending this email to? If you are a job seeker sometimes it’s best to do some research and find the name of the person who will be reading your email, whether that is a recruiter, an HR rep, or a supervisor. There is a huge difference with how you will craft your email depending on what type of person or department you are sending it to and having their name at the top can make your email stand out from the crowd.
Have a Strong Subject Line
It’s also important to have a strong subject line. You may be sending this to a huge inbox where someone who sees thousands of emails a day will need to comb through. Having a strong, clear, unique subject line can go a long way to getting your email read, remembered, and passed upwards.
When writing the email, remember to be professional. It can be a bit of a balance to maintain a professional tone while still being personable but it can be vital to getting your email read and noticed. A prospective employer won’t want to need to teach you how to craft an email and having a well written email lets the employer know that you have writing skills which are important to many positions. This may be a good place to do some research on writing skills. A little bit of sharpening before you write an email can go a long way to sounding more professional. Along with the way it sounds be sure to triple check spelling and grammar. SpellCheck is great but it can often miss little things or missing words. A good exercise is to read your email out loud before you send it, that can help you pick up mistakes you might have missed.
Don’t Forget the Signature
Your emails should always end with a signature. It should include your name and any contact information you want to share, you address, phone number, alternate email, etc. While you may have attached a resume that has this info it never hurts to add it to the end of your emails. It also provides a more professional look and feel.