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Do Resume Blasting, Resume Distribution Services Work?

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For a hundred bucks, you can pay a company like ResumeBlaster to send your resume and cover letter to 3000+ recruiters in up to 6 of “your disciplines.” I know nothing about their particular service but I know that they are one of several out there that will bulk mail out your resume and cover letter to recruiters in their database. If you’ve been looking for a job for a while, this service probably looks very appealing to you. For a mere $89, or less if you want to reach fewer people, you can do something that would otherwise take you several days. It seems like a good deal, almost too good to be true, right?

Before you pony up a nice dinner, let me offer up some reasons why this might not be a good idea.

Junk Mail Syndrome

Unless you’ve done a really good job opting out of junk mail (how to opt out of junk mail, credit offers from existing relationships), you probably get a bunch of letters each week you’d classify as junk mail. You also probably shred them without even opening them.

I’m inclined to believe that a recruiter who is tired of getting bulk resume mailers is probably doing the same thing. If you read reviews about resume mailing services, you’ll notice one trend – a very low response rate. Direct mail, which is the industry term for what we call junk mail, has a response rate that is very low but relies on a large number of mailers. Half a percent is acceptable if you’re mailing out millions of mailers.

Expensive

If you assume a response rate of 0.5% (which may be a reasonable response rate), that’s 15 responses for $89. That’s $5.93 a response. That’s expensive compared to submitting your resume to a job hunting website for free. When you do that, chances are a headhunter/recruiter will see your resume and start trying to place you for jobs if they know of any that apply. Headhunters make jobs when they place you, so you’ll know quickly if you have marketable skills.

So $5.93 with a resume bulk mailer, assuming a half percent response rate, or free with a job hunting website.

Spamming

When you send a resume yourself, you know they want to receive it. They may not have asked you for it but you know they’re taking resumes and you’re sending it in a way they deem acceptable. When you use a resume distribution service, you can’t be sure. Maybe they opted into the service as a recruiter, maybe their email was pulled off a list of recruiter, maybe they don’t want to receive anything in bulk and the distributor isn’t as clean as they should be. Either way, when you outsource distribution, you may be getting their attention in a bad way. If the recruiters opted in, wonderful, but can you be sure every single one of them opted in?

Building Relationships

I believe that the most effective way to get a job at a company is by developing relationships with people at that company. Talk to friends, family, friends of friends, attend networking events, conferences, and the like to build these relationships. Even cold calling on a telephone is far more effective than sending out thousands of identical cover letters and resumes. You need to develop relationships to be the most successful in a job hunt and you can’t do that through mass mailings, electronic or otherwise. The USPS would love it more people blasted out their resumes at 44 cents a pop but the reality is that there are more effective methods.

My advice, having never used these services before, is to avoid them. $100 for a few thousand resumes sent may seem cheap, especially if it results in securing a job, but there are better alternatives and all of them are guaranteed not to piss off the recruiter. Finally, remember that these folks are overwhelmed as it is, “blasting” a whole bunch of them probably isn’t going to help. :)

Have you had experience with services like this? If so I’d love to hear your opinions.

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19 Responses to “Do Resume Blasting, Resume Distribution Services Work?”

  1. I sincerely doubt that spamming recruiters works. Ever.

    My 2 cents: http://careerade.com/?p=243

  2. NCTaxPro says:

    If you are in the market for a new position, there’s only one site I recommend:

    http://www.asktheheadhunter.com

    Nick Corcodilos’s approach works, that’s all I have to say.

  3. ziglet19 says:

    I also can’t imagine tht sending out this many resumes is actually getting them in the hands of people hiring for jobs that are relevant to your experience. I suppose if you’re in a bind, you may be looking for any job at all, but I imagine in a lot of cases, only a handful out of the thousand are even recruting for the type of job you’re looking for.

  4. Ben says:

    Since there is always more than one position available I tend to toss resumes where the cover letter doesn’t specify what position they’re applying for.

  5. cubiclegeoff says:

    I would think this may work in particular industries, but most, it probably wouldn’t. You’d be better off with a head hunter/recruiter that specializes in an industry.

  6. zapeta says:

    I don’t know how this could be that effective for all the reasons you’ve mentioned. I haven’t used a service like this, and it wouldn’t be effective in my industry if I did.

  7. Posco Grubb says:

    I don’t have any experience (and don’t plan to in the future) with such services.

    Here’s a free service for technical jobs in which hiring managers need to pay a fee. I haven’t used it yet, but it looks interesting because of its association with the computer Q&A site:
    http://careers.stackoverflow.com/

  8. Yeah, I agree with all the others here, I don’t see this as being very effective. I know it takes some work to get your resume out there, but it’s better than making a resume seem like spam.

  9. eric says:

    Seems like a money down the drain type service.

  10. Shirley says:

    The personnel director wants to know why you want a specific job and he/she wants to see some personality in your resume. A generic resume won’t do that.

  11. I hear from many non profit organizations that they get spammed by many of these companies. They let me know they really don’t help on their end. They just delete them.

  12. Mac says:

    I hate spam and I’m sure recruiters do too. I try to focus more on quality resumes & cover letters that fit each job I’m applying for as one does not fit all.

  13. jsbrendog says:

    i agree with the overarching idea of the other posts. spamming jobs is not the best tactic. seems like a waste of money if you ask me

  14. judi says:

    Hi Jim:
    Wow – I saw the title of this article and thought, I don’t recognize this site. They must have pulled my article off ezinearticles.com. That’s because the title is so close to mine.

    The article is different, so you didn’t plagiarize it, but it certainly has some very strong similarities!

    My background is so different from so many other coaches, that I have some pretty unique viewpoints on things, one reason I don’t always like to really be specific.

    Funny, how often my stuff shows up other places, frequently outright plagiarized. So at least thanks for having the courtesy to add some originality to it.
    Judi

  15. Arnel says:

    What would it take to get a resume distributor company to earn your trust?

    • Mary says:

      Stop sending me resumes from people who are from out of state, or the country for that matter, who are looking to “relocate” to every single area you have on your drop down menu. Stop telling them to broaden their search area so that “your resume can reach hundreds of recruiters in YOUR selected area, region or city”

  16. Kit says:

    When I read their pamphlets I doubted it already and when I went to their place very intriguing receptionist not inside the office itself and mostly if you talk to them unbelievable and too much wordy and keep on backing up your reasons not to sign an agreement. The most dangerous part hey are asking money for job seeker instead to the company for at least $300 and 2.5% commission. If you are dealing with them get out to their office as soon as possible.

  17. sam says:

    I’ve tried a few resume submission services, some work, some don’t.

    Good Ones

    http://www.resumerobin.com
    my.monster.com/resources/

    these two have large job search sites behind them and i had quite a few responses

    Junk:

    http://www.resumerabbit.com
    http://www.resumedeliver.com

    charged me money and didn’t do anything

  18. Steve says:

    I’ve heard good things about Resume Rabbit.


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