"ASK HR" is our advice column where we answer readers' questions about pressing work dilemmas, job search queries, resumes, and navigating Hollywood. If you have a career-related question, email us, and the answer could appear in a future newsletter! All submissions will remain anonymous.
Dear Hollywood Resumes,
A few months ago, I applied for a job, but I never heard from the employer, and the posting was taken down soon after I submitted my materials. I've noticed that over the last 2 months, the posting keeps popping up again, getting taken down, and then resurfacing. I just saw it yet again on the company's careers page, and I'm wondering: Should I reapply in case they missed my materials the first time around? Ignore it? Is this sort of thing normal, or am I stuck in my very own job search Groundhog Day?
-- Perplexed in Punxsutawney,
Dear Perplexed in Punxsutawney,
You're not alone in your own time loop! The truth is, no one really knows why this happens in any given circumstance, but it is fairly common. Jobs become available and go on hold all the time, often because budgets change, priorities change, or the role that was supposed to open up doesn't. Sometimes jobs get taken down because the posting expired or is getting pushed down in the search results due to a long hiring process, and the recruiters repost to bump them up on search engines. It could also mean more roles are becoming available in the same department, or someone quit, or the new hire didn't work out...and so on. Especially at a bigger company, things are constantly changing when it comes to open roles.
It doesn't hurt to reapply just this once to show your continued interest. However, it is possible that they saw your resume and didn't think you were right for the role. If you'd heard back from a recruiter or have a contact at the company, you can reach out to them to follow up and see if they're open to reviewing your materials again. Keep in mind that if you don't think they saw your resume in the first place, you probably weren't doing your due diligence in going through the proper channels to get your resume into a real person's hands. You should always take this extra step to make sure someone is actually reviewing your resume.
If you submitted blindly, it's okay to submit again one more time, but make sure you're really reading through the job posting carefully. First, are you 100% sure it's the same role? It's possible the title is the same but the department is different, or they rewrote the job posting after an internal restructure. Then, ask yourself if you're truly qualified, and not over or under-qualified. If they're looking for someone with 1-2 years of experience, and you've got 10, they probably ignored your application the first time around because they want someone green. The same is true if they're looking for specialized skills you might not have -- like they need someone who has successfully navigated the film festival circuit, and all your experience is in broadcast TV. Not that we're suggesting you never apply for a role that's a stretch -- just that you recognize it's a stretch (in either direction!) and don't double down when the chips fell exactly as you expected. Unless you can get insider insight (and a referral!) or are really convinced your resume aligns almost perfectly with the role, move on to the next job opening.
If you do decide to apply a second time because it's just that good of a fit on your end, make that the last time. You don't want to get blacklisted by spamming a company -- especially a dream company -- with multiple applications when they've already vetted you. The right job will come around -- just keep checking for new postings!
-- Angela & Cindy