Not Getting Called for Interviews? 3 Simple Ways to Get Shortlisted

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So, you’ve been scrolling through job boards and submitting your CV.

But it’s been days, weeks, months – you still haven’t heard back from your prospects.

The wait is killing you! You start to get really nervous.

Was there something wrong with your CV? Were your prior experiences insufficient?

Having read over 10,000 resumes in my 10 years of hiring people, I can say that the main reason you’re not getting called for interviews is that your CV is NOT effective.

A bad CV is the #1 reason why job seekers don’t get interview calls. Think about it – top companies get hundreds of applications for each role.

There is serious competition. To get a call, you’ve got to stand out.

So, how do you craft an effective CV that gets you shortlisted for interviews?

Here are 3 ways:

1. Tailor Your CV For Each Job Application

How to get called for a job interview? #1: Tailor Your CV For Each Job Application

In an interview selection process, quality is king. It’s all about looking for the cream of the crop.

Unless your application has been tailored to stand out, don’t put it in the pile.

If you’re applying to work in the creative industry, an artistic CV will definitely be more effective than a plain one. If you’re eyeing a technical position, then your CV must showcase your technical skills in its layout and wording.

Including a narrative on your CV makes it unforgettable, too.

Great storytelling techniques will help make you look like the candidate recruiters have been waiting for all this while. We talked more about this here.

Sending in a half-hearted, rushed application hurts all parties.

The recruiter will waste their time reading your poor application.  You, as an applicant, will waste your time applying. (and probably get your morale hurt by the inevitable rejection)

So, the next time you’re sifting through job boards, don’t resort to the temptation of hitting apply to every interesting job post.

Instead pick no more than 5 job ads you’re really keen on, bookmark them, and then spend a few hours over the weekend tailoring your application for each of these roles.

Here’s our guide on how to tailor your CV for each application.

Remember, it’s not a numbers game. Only applicants with high-quality CVs get called for interviews.

2. Scan-proof your application.

How to get called for a job interview? #2: Scan-proof your application.

Most typically assume that recruiters spend about a min or so to read through a CV.

The truth is, they only spend an average of 5-7 seconds glancing through. That means you only have this very short timeframe to leave a good impression.

Your CV’s first page and layout could potentially make or break your application.

Aside from human scans, there’s also this evil Applicant Tracking System (ATS) to watch out for.

Every single company on the Fortune 500 list currently uses some form of ATS to automatically scan CVs and pick out certain keywords. They then approve or reject applications based on these keywords.

Using this system, CVs get read by machines first, instead of humans!

So many CVs actually get rejected without being read by a single human being.

This is why it’s so important that you submit software-scannable CVs by including key phrases related to your job history. We talked more about this here.

3. Have your CV checked by recruiters. (FREE!)

How to get called for a job interview? #3: Have your CV checked by recruiters.

With years of screening applicants under their belts, expert recruiters and headhunters are the best people to get feedback from.

Since we all have different experience levels, educational backgrounds, and career industries, it can get challenging to figure out what works best specifically for YOU.

And I am here to help you with that.

If you need FREE CV feedback, fill in your details here and I’ll get in touch with you.

Our team will personally check your CV and reply with detailed feedback on what you can improve to stand out in your chosen industry.

We aim to provide value to our readers, so this service is completely FREE. If you’re not sure why you’re not getting called for interviews or would like to do a quality-check for your CV, fill in your details here.

If you’re short on time and would need professional resume writers to craft a high-quality CV for you, you may also check our Resume Writing Services.

A great career takes work.

There are so many talented, underpaid executives today. To get extreme results, you need to put in extreme effort.

Nothing worth having comes easy. But in the long run, we all get what we deserve.

Keep dreaming big. Keep working hard.

I’m rooting for you! 😉


What challenges are you currently facing in your career hunt?

Let me know in the comments below and I promise to read through each one or answer them in my next blog posts 😊


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Free Confidential CV Feedback

Fill out the form to the below, and I’ll get in touch with you to have a short discussion about your CV for the Singapore job market. We’ll ask questions about your career goals and point out areas where you can improve your resume. Let’s have a candid discussion about the CV writing services you need and see if I’ll be able to help. The consultation is free and completely non-obligatory

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Russel Yee

Former Headhunter


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