Informational Interviews and Why They’re Awesome

One of the most depressing parts of the job search is the constant rejection. It’s not just the fact that you’re not getting jobs. It’s the fact that you’re applying to a bunch of jobs and not receiving any feedback. Writing resumes and filling out applications is a lot of work, and when you don’t receive any results people tend to get frustrated and a little bit desperate. I would like to invite you to stop wasting all of your time applying to open competitions. If you spend 8 hours per day applying to open competitions, you will have likely applied to all of the positions you qualify for in about two weeks. At this point, you should continue to apply to vacant positions as they come up, but this should only take up about 20% of your time. The rest of your time should be spent networking, and reaching out to people.


Interview People

When you apply to a vacant position, you are put through a screening process. This means that you’re often discarded before anyone has even spoken with you and you often don’t find out why. Informational interviews allow you to skip this process and get valuable information and feedback on your application while you’re networking with people who hire for the specific types of positions you’re looking for.

How it works

Step 1 – Decide what you want to do

Step 2 – Find companies and people who hire for those positions

Step 3 – Reach out to those people and companies

Turns out it’s not rocket science. You can reach out to recruiters or hiring managers and ask them questions specifically about the job (if you’re considering it and not sure) or about your resume and background to find out why you’re not getting interviews and call backs from the other positions you have applied for. You’ll get that valuable information AND when they go to hire someone new, they might think of you before they post a vacant position. Then you can skip the screening process and get right to the interview before anyone else applies. 

About the Author

ProfileScott Keenan is a Recruiter for Priority Personnel Inc., with several years’ experience recruiting in both the public and private sectors in addition to marketing and social media roles. As a self-described professional cynic, he provides unique insight into modern recruiting from both the recruiter and candidate’s perspective. You can follow him on Twitter or connect with him on LinkedIn