Whether you’re new to the world of virtual assistants, or you’re just looking for something different, it’s time to get the job application process underway.
What do you do when after sending away several resumes and cover letters, you’re met with deathly silence? What happens when you don’t even receive acknowledgement of your application, an interview or even a phone call? Your skills might not be the problem. It might not even be you. The blame could lie within your resume and cover letter.
Below are five ways to land your dream virtual assistant job.
Find out who you are sending your virtual assistant job application to
Nothing says ‘I don’t care’ better than a cover letter that’s addressed to no one in particular. In fact, this particular act can be considered by many employers as similar to junk mail. If you are applying for several virtual assistant positions, it definitely pays to know who you will be sending your application to. This information is generally very easy to come by, even if it’s not made clear in the initial virtual assistant job advertisement.
If it’s not listed on the job application, you can:
- Search the business name on the internet to see if they have their personnel listed.
- Ask other virtual assistants you know whether they have had dealings with the business.
- Phone the business and ask who is leading the interview, and to whom the cover letter should be addressed to.
A little initiative can go a long way.
Customise your cover letter for each business
The person who advertised the virtual staffing position will no doubt have hundreds of job applications to go through. Yours will not even make it through to the shortlist if you aren’t able to customise it for the business. Putting no effort into your cover letter can be seen as lazy and the recruitment manager might even think you’re sending out mass applications. Even though this might be the case, you need to make the business feel like you want their job in particular.
You can customise your cover letter by:
- Mentioning particular skills that they asked for, and examples of how you match that skillset.
- Comparing their morals, goals and mission statements with your personal values.
- Giving examples of work that’s similar or the same to what they expect in their job application.
Although there are several cover letter templates on the internet, they are just that – templates. They should not be a ‘fill in the gaps’ template, more as a guide to help you construct your own custom cover letter.
You have to remember; your potential new employer is looking for people who can go the extra mile and use their initiative. Copying someone else’s cover letter is not helping them find a virtual staffing solution. They are merely learning in an instant that you’re not the right fit.
Organise your resume in an easy-to-read format
If your resume is not easy to follow, easy to read or is not condensed into one or two pages, consider it a wasted effort. Many business owners will not contemplate hiring you if they cannot grasp the essence of your resume within a few lines. If your information is all over the place and doesn’t make for easy-reading, how can they be sure your work will be?
There are several CV templates online, many of which feature infographics for easy-reading. These infographics prove to be useful in virtual administrative assistant positions as they show the skills you possess in a range of areas. The best part is, you can see purely from visuals that you’re skilled. These resumes are particularly useful if you are skilled in software but don’t have room for a paragraph explaining to what degree.
Make sure your information is relevant
The worst thing you can do when applying for a virtual assistant job is provide your potential new boss with irrelevant information. Remember, a business owner will be reviewing several hundred CVs. Is it really necessary for them to know you received a certificate for cooking – an unrelated field – back in 1987? If it’s not relevant to the position, it’s not necessary. Be short and sweet and to the point.
The business with the vacant virtual staffing position wants to know you are the right person to do the job. Your goal within your resume is to make them believe you are that person. You need to show them you have the necessary skills in a way that’s not just telling them you do.
Make sure you back up all your relevant information with examples. Your potential new employer wants to know how you solved problems and completed tasks on time. They can’t just take your word for it.
Follow up for feedback once applications close
You aren’t going to land every job you apply for, that’s just the nature of the beast. You might have the perfect CV, the most personalised cover letter and the best rapport, but someone else just might do it better. There are likely to be plenty more opportunities out there for you to get that virtual staffing position you desire.
Once you’ve sent your cover letter and resume to a potential new employer, it’s now time to wait. Several advertisements will state that they will be in touch with the successful applicant by a certain date. If that date has been and gone, it’s fair to say you didn’t get the position. However, there is still an opportunity for feedback. Depending on the job and how many applications it would have attracted, you can always phone the business for feedback. This is generally more acceptable if you have made it to an interviewing round and missed out. If you’re able to find out why you didn’t get the job, it could help you for next time.
There’s no reason why you cannot ask what you can do better for next time. Often, employers are only too willing to provide feedback that could ultimately see them get a better round of candidates the next time they release a job application. If employers tell you what they don’t like, it can help you avoid making the same mistake in future.
How did you land your dream virtual assistant job? Was it your resume that helped secure the job? We’d love to find out.