You see the ad. It reads like a perfect fit for you, and you have all of the qualifications and even a perfect resume;  Perhaps you even followed up with a phone call. So why aren’t you getting a callback? What gives?

It could be that the job doesn’t exist. Or the company is collecting resumes, but on the fence about whether or not to go forward. Or maybe they already have someone in mind. It happens. And it happens a lot. Unfortunately there is no solid proof on how much. Why? Because rarely will you find a hiring manager who will spill the beans and say whether or not it’s a common practice at their company. It’s wrong on many levels, and they know it.

In their defense, our federal government has tied their hands. Many vacancies are required to be advertised in order to  comply with EEO compliance laws. I know this firsthand, because several years ago I was brought into a company as an “emergency hire” to cover for a guy who needed to take a 3-month medical leave. There was no time to advertise, hire, and train a temp;  I was already living nearby and had the experience they needed. When the employee came back to work, I was slated to exit gracefully; but the company decided they wanted to retain me and created a position for me. However, broadcasting rules dictate the position had to be advertised publicly. No where in the ad, did it reveal, “you need not apply, this is only a formality. Therefore, 29 people applied for a position that was already mine. I’m sure that many were qualified and interested in the job,. yet wondering why they weren’t granted an interview.

In this economy, I’m hearing rumblings from ad salesman, that some classifieds are being “stuffed” with ads to make the job boards look more robust, so they can solicit new advertisers. I’m also learning that resorts will do huge recruiting events all season long to keep resumes on file to ensure a good pool of candidates throughout the busy season. In the hospitality industry there is usually high turnover and resorts need to act quickly to keep staff at optimum levels.

There can also be economic pressures on the company, or executive team infighting. Even the Federal Government collects resumes for “potential” openings. These are the vacancies that are usually open for a long span of time. If you see one on that opens and closes the same week, there’s a good chance they already have someone in mind.

So what do you do? Apply anyway. It’s good practice, gets your name out there, and shows your intent. Persistence and patience are important traits of a successful job search.