Application fatigue: How to stay motivated in a candidate heavy market

29 July 2020 Dene Gambotto

Application Fatigue

In the current market, we are experiencing more than a 50% year-on-year increase in job applications.

Usually Hiring Managers dream for a unicorn and right now they are more likely to find one – making it very competitive for job seekers. With this in mind, it has never been more important to review your job-seeking strategy and be realistic about which roles you apply for to stay motivated during your job search.

What is ‘Application Fatigue’?

Application fatigue is when job seekers apply for too many non-suitable roles and then lose motivation throughout the job-seeking phase.  Applying for jobs can be time-consuming and at times emotional, so best to reserve yourself for the most suitable opportunities.

So how can you avoid application fatigue? Before you click ‘Apply’, ask yourself…

Do I have suitable or relevant sector experience?

If the role is an agency side marketing role and you only have experience as a clientside marketer – you may struggle to make the shortlist.  I’m not saying the skills are not transferable, more so that in this current candidate heavy climate Hiring Managers can be ultra-conservative.  It’s not ideal for job seekers, but it’s economic for businesses.

Or if you have all pharmaceutical marketing experience and the role is in the telco sector – hand on heart ask yourself if that role would be the best fit for you?  A move from pharma to beauty or FMCG may be a more suitable and more palatable move for you.

Am I at the right level?

It’s time to be honest with yourself here as there is NO point applying for roles that are too far above or below your current level.  Stay focussed on what the natural next step is in your career.

Do I have the right core competencies?

Too often we’re finding candidates are applying for roles where they may only have two out of the five required core skills.  Review the responsibilities in the job ad and really challenge yourself to provide examples of past experience that matches the brief.  Do you have the skills they’re looking for or any transferable skills?  If not, you’re better to give this job a miss and wait for that right match for your skills to avoid disappointment and application fatigue.

If successful, what will I gain from doing this role?

Picture yourself in the role for 12 to 18 months. What skills will you develop over this time?  How will this experience improve your career?  What do you want or need from your next role?  Is it security, team management experience or new skills?  Will this job give you that?

Another piece of advice is always to choose roles based on what you‘ll be doing and learning day to day rather than getting caught up in the company or brand, which we see all the time!

If you’re ever not sure if you should be applying for a role, why not reach out to the recruiter and ask for a quick chat?  Any good recruiter will be able to tell just by a look at your LinkedIn profile if you’ve got what it takes to make the shortlist.