Do you want a job? Then don’t do this…

We’re always looking for good “database folk” (i.e. DBA’s or database developers).  Its fair to say that the pickings have been pretty slim for some time now, but we still get a constant trickle of applications that make me want to laugh (and sometimes cry).

Here are a few “pain-points” I’ve come across recently in our recruiting efforts:

Dnt us txt-spk in yr application

While writing in “txt-speak” may convey to your potential future employer that you’re young and in touch with modern pop-culture, it doesn’t instil a great deal of confidence in your intellectual abilities. I like to know that you can actually spell “thanks” (hint, it doesn’t have an “x” in it).

Don’t just use a crappy cover-letter template

I’ve had a few cases of deja vu where several candidates have had remarkably similar letters, if not exactly the same.  I’ve even had one applicant leave in the template place-holders… I’m sorry, we don’t currently have an opening for a [job-title] here at [company-name].

Make sure you send the right stuff

I’m all for you customising your cover-letters, and even CV’s, to reflect the position you’re applying for, but make 110% sure that you send me the right ones. If you’re applying for a “Junior DBA” role at “Company A”, make sure your cover-letter doesn’t thank me for considering your application for the position of “PHP Developer” at “Company B” (which, by the way, is way cooler than Company A).

Read the advertisement

Seems simple enough, right?  Just double check that the company isn’t asking for something in addition to the usual cover-letter & CV combo.  We often ask candidates to answer several questions in their cover-letters.  These questions usually relate to the position or the company, and help to show us how you think, how much effort you’re willing to put into your application, etc.  Needless to say, you may get a few “negative points” if you overlook the questions entirely.

Are there any I’ve missed? Anything you don’t agree with? Leave me a comment with your thoughts.


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