Top 5 errors to avoid when you apply for a job in the USA

apply for a job in the USA

Living abroad comes with privileges and challenges. As you know, since the start of my journey, since Maxime and I achieved our dream to relocate from France to the USA, we experienced first hand the difficulties to make this big leap. I’ve always been passionate about intercultural living and life abroad, and therefore, I took as a personal goal to provide opportunities for you to apply for a job in the USA, and help you expand perspectives and break out of your comfort zone.

With my backstory, I have always been on the job seeker side.

Knowing what is like, I have always focused on giving you the best personal tips, information, and tricks from my experience so you can feel at ease when you apply for a job in the USA. But, today I found myself with a different point of view that may shock everybody…

Earlier this year, being more specific… About three months ago, trying to make the best of USponsor Me website, I noticed that I needed some help. I decided to start looking for a Marketing and Communication Assistant to hire, to have extra hands and brain to upgrade this project.

And, knowing that the majority of you guys that read me are searching for job openings, my first thought was to keep this job inside the family.

So, I immediately posted two job openings, and I started receiving your feedback in no time!!

Being completely honest, I was static to see that people were excited to give me a hand to develop and expand USponsor Me. 🙂

At least, that’s what I thought when started seeing your applications and emails accumulating in my inbox email in response to my offer… But, right after that, I realized that the reality was different. I found myself in a position not typical for me… For the first time, I found myself in the “Recruiter’s” shoes.

And I am sorry to say that the majority of the applications I received disappointed me… I thought to myself:

Am I doing good enough work teaching you guys, how to enhance your virtues?

Or, am I showing you the right way on how to present yourself to a recruiter?

Am I giving enough information for you to understand what a recruiter wants to see on a job-seeker?

After all these questions, I can’t describe how disappointed I was… To be honest, I was even kind of furious… So, I gave it much thought, and I decided to see it as a kind of an experiment so all of us can take useful and valuable information after all of this.

We will talk about the top five errors I saw on multiple applications, which screamed: “DON’T HIRE ME”, and the most important actions to handle that.

Are you ready? Let’s give it a world!

My requests first, what you need afterward

With this example, I want to talk about so many emails where I saw this “incredible” intro:

“How much does it pay?”  

Very often, I didn’t even see a “Hello” nor a “Goodbye” in the email. Guys, it’s pretty evident that if you ask this question before anything else, it’s because you do not want to waste time when you apply for a job in the USA for positions with a salary that does not meet your expectations, I hear it well, and I understand.

Let’s be clear. Just one etiquette blunder could cost you your dream job! In today’s competitive job market, employers are very choosy about who they hire. If you don’t understand and exhibit standard etiquette, employers are likely to assume you are not professionally competent.

On the other hand, what’s the conclusion any recruiter could get pretty quickly after that? What did you think, came to mind when I read that question, as a founder of a company?

It’s as clear as crystal that what you want above all is to know whether the salary amount will work for you or not, right? But, what recruiter concludes is that you do not have any interest and do not want anything to do with the company you are applying for.

Concerning me, or any other recruiter: I definitely don’t want to work with someone who he’s obviously more interested in the payment that the job perse.

Lesson #1:

A recruiter is always looking for someone who is passionate about the work, duties, responsibilities, and the company itself. They will never give it a second look to a person who is just there for a “good salary.”

So, if you don’t see any salary range specified on the job opening and if salary is a must for you, DON’T ask how much it does pay and DON’T apply.

You are my last chance! I’m desperate!

This is another example of a general case: Showing your personal before your professional motivations.

I tell you, any recruiter can see what you want from the job miles away. And, you make it so much easier when you put on the front line of the cover letter the following:

“have the green card and I’m afraid of losing it if I do not do a job fast”

Guys, this is terrible! Imagine how I or how any recruiter can perceive that…

Actually, I perceived it just like this: this person applied to this job opening, not because he/she wants or likes the job… No, he/she is desperate, and he/she obviously needs a job at all costs.

Do I want to work with someone who doesn’t really care about what I’m doing? Absolutely NOT!

Lesson #2:

Do not make feel the recruiter as a mouth feeder!  If you show from the beginning that you have all to win, and you use the least wanted “attention trick”: Petty… I assure you that, the recruiter will not even open your resume.

I’m not what you are looking for… But hire me anyway!

Well, here comes to the third common mistake I found in the applications.

I was very clear on the job opening on which skills and aptitudes were needed for the job, things like WordPress knowledge and marketing automation were a “must”.. But, for some reason I found myself reading:

“I’m pretty good at customer service….”

Or resumes showing skills like:

apply for a job in the USA career summary in the resume

how to apply for a job in the USA, skills in the resume

wrong resume Key attributes to apply for a job in the USA

Guys, this is not objective at all, very confusing resume. You have to remember that I was looking for a marketing assistant… So, I don’t understand at all, how can those applicants help me with what I want…

Let’s be real! Does that make sense to you? Imagine a situation where you go to the doctor because you have an awful headache, and this one offers you a medication to treat a foot blister you don’t have.

The worst is that you know what I do, you follow me, some of you for two years now… I’m USponsor Me, and what I need is someone who can help me to manage sales pages, sales funnels, email marketing, etc.

Lesson #3:

Clearly, show the TARGET position YOU WANT in your resume. And clearly explain in your cover letter, why you want THIS position you’re applying for. Here I give you the best resume templates, and all the tips you need to create your American Resume like a pro!

If you find a job opening that doesn’t fit with what you are looking for, DO NOT apply, because the recruiter will not create a job for you from ashes. Be smart with your time, do not lose it with dead-ends applications.

I’m interested, but I’m not going to tell you why

So, you tell me in your cover letter that:

 “I am writing to express my strong interest in working at your company.”

Ok, fine! But, you don’t prove to me why!!!  🙁

Why are you interested? What in particular do you love? USponsor Me is a recruitment company in the USA for international candidates. What is excited for you to join us?

Lesson #4:

Never forget to show the interest you have when you apply for a job in the USA or anywhere. Prove and talk about the reasons you have to be part of the company. At the end of the day, when a recruiter has multiple good applications, he will definitely remember the person that it’s not only fit to the job but the passionate one for being part of the company’s vision and mission.

Give me a visa! Give me a visa please!

I have to say that when I created the job desk, I was very cautious to be transparent with you about the visa issue: I wrote in bold that I’m not yet sponsoring any kind of visa, and that I can not take any J1 person.

And what people do?

“I want to apply for a job in the USA. Could you give a visa sponsorship?”

I can see that you quite understand you need first a job to get the visa. But anyway: so disappointed! Guys, is the company USponsor Me in the USponsor Me database? Did you do some research first? Didn’t I tell you that 90% of companies based in the United States CANNOT or DO NOT need international candidates?

Lesson #5:

If a company is pretty straightforward from the beginning about no visa sponsorship offering and/or no J1 hiring for a specific job: do not ask! It’s already specified!

The truth is, most people go about getting job sponsorship the wrong way, then wonder why they are unsuccessful. You could be the perfect candidate for a job, but if the company does not offer visa sponsorship, it doesn’t matter. Your resume will then promptly dismissed.

To find an employer willing to sponsor you for the visa, you have to:

  1. know which is the ideal visa for you to claim. And you can easily find out by taking the quiz here
  2. only search among companies which can offer this type of visa sponsorship/hiring. And to find all of them, simply click here

 

If this experience taught me anything, is that you really need to put into the recruiter’s shoes when you are going to apply for a job in the USA. Because, ye, recruiters are human like everybody. I strongly recommend to anyone to do this exercise now! I assure you, it will be handy in your job search.

Do you wonder why you have no reply from recruiters? Share a comment below with your through about all of these!

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Sarah Papasodaro

Expat in the USA, creator of the blog Vivre au-delà des frontières, and founder of USponsor me. My goal is to help you achieving your American Dream: living and working in the USA. :)

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