Saturday, November 3, 2012

Optimal Time for Applying for a Job On-line

 By Mary Salvino

Dear Mary,

I have been applying for jobs, mostly via email and I am beginning to wonder if there is an optimal time for applying for the position. Is applying for a job on the weekend good, or bad? Is sending an in an application more than once a good idea?


Job Seeker

Dear Job Seeker,

The subject of there being an optimal time to send job applications via e-mail is indeed a good one.  The short answer is that there is no ‘ideal’ time to send in a job application.   There are many factors to consider.  Some of the factors are within your control while others are not.  

Factors over which you have no control include the following:

  • How the person who will be receiving the email has set up their account, i.e. ascending, descending, threaded/unthreaded, or whether or not the company uses Applicant Tracking Software [ATS]
  • The size of the company – Large companies who have dedicated personal to vet résumés, i.e. an HR person or department, VS a smaller company wherein everyone who works there wears more than one hat.
    • In the case of a large company, it makes more sense to send in your application on a Tuesday or Wednesday as their Monday morning inbox will likely full of email that will need to be reviewed before they get on with their day.
    • In the case of smaller companies, it is likely that a great many of the decision makers work at least part of the weekend, if not all of it and will take advantage of the non-traditional business week/hours to review the job applications of candidates.

  • The job itself – Job postings for entry-level positions remain active for very short periods of time wherein middle to executive level career opportunities will leave a longer period of time for candidates to apply.
HINT: Job candidates should REFRAIN from sending in more than one application per job, but, they should be sure to follow-up on all applications.  

HINT: If the job opportunity is re-posted, send an email to the company’s hiring manger to reiterate that you are still interested in the opportunity and that you would be happy to reapply for the position, if necessary.

HINT:  Sending applications and supporting documents to real people will be far effective than filling in on-line forms.

HINT:  Nothing will tell the employer more than having a face-to-face meeting to indicate your interest in the opportunity. If you have the chance to drop off a résumé in person, even if your only contact is with the receptionist, it is better than sending an e-mail.  *While at the office, ask for a card.  Those business cards will have the name of the person to whom you should be addressing your electronic correspondence.  At the very minimum, you will have the e-mail format used by the company so you can guess what the correct e-mail address you need will be.  This information will then enable you to send your documents to the hiring manager directly.

HINT: For additional information and strategies, you can also look at   How to Reapply for a Job After Rejection

Copyright © 2012, Career Matters. All Rights Reserved. Permission to Reprint: This article may be reprinted, provided it appears in its entirety with the following attribution: Copyright © 2012, Career Matters. Reprinted by permission of the author, Mary Salvino. “Career Matters” is a blog authored by Mary Salvino, Senior Consultant for SMART Career that is dedicated to those who are seeking advice on managing their career and future job opportunities. We welcome readers to share their experiences, post their comments or ask questions about career related matters. This blog is also dedicated to those who stand a little taller each time they picked themselves up after failing and those who gained the wisdom and humility from those experiences to help others do the same. For any questions or comments that are better addressed privately, please feel free to e-mail Mary directly at