Career Coach: Tricks to Getting Organized and Keeping Track of Applications
Follow up: 10/10/07 -- This is the initial follow-up to be sure they received materials. This gives enough time for them to open the package and record receipt.
Behind the first page you will put a copy of the cover letter sent to the company. Behind that you can put any promotional material from the company and articles about the company. As you build your relationship with the company, your other correspondence will follow behind the initial cover letter. Obviously, if you apply online, your follow-up dates will be a few days earlier because you don't have to wait for the mail to arrive. Also, print out any email correspondence you have with the company and put it in your notebook.
Always keep your conversations with the employer courteous, brief and to the point. After you discover that the company received your materials, ask when they will review them and when they would like you to follow up. Using the resources you have created (your job-search notebook), you add that you really liked the work they did on Spud Racer and that your skills as shown by the texture work you did for Lettuce AloneAfter you hang up, make a new entry on the Potato Productions page. Put down the date 10/10/07 and write "spoke with Sylvester Tate, the work should be reviewed on 10/20/07." Write down a new follow-up date of 10/22/07.
When you call on 10/22/07 and Sylvester answers (you recognize his voice), you say, "Hi, Sylvester (or Mr. Tate), I'm calling to follow up on my application for a modeling/texturing artist job. My reel was scheduled for review on October 20 and I'm calling to find out if there is any feedback. I'm really interested in working for Potato Productions because one of my favorite games of all time is Spud Racer." Take notes if there is any feedback and rejoice if they want to schedule an interview.
But perhaps they like your work, but they currently have no openings for a modeler/texture artist. How often should you follow up?
"There is a fine line between tenacity or persistence and stalking," cautions Shelly Mix, Recruiting Manager, LAIKA. She usually informs people of when to follow up but she says generally six to eight weeks between contacts is safe.
Mix also mentions that candidates can write a note to the company whenever there is something newsworthy. For example, you can write to Ida Gold when she is promoted to head of production at Potato Productions or when Potato Productions wins another award for Spud Racer. The trick is to keep in touch with the company so when they do have an opening they think of you in a positive way and call you in for an interview. Remember to keep copies of all correspondence in your organized job-search notebook
Don't throw away your job-search notebook when you get hired -- it's a great tool for networking and keeping track of what's going on in your industry. It's also a valuable resource and road map for the next time you look for a job.
Pamela Kleibrink Thompson is a recruiter, hiring strategist, career coach and speaker, available for personal consultations and speaking engagements. She is currently recruiting for senior technical directors for a feature film company on the West Coast and would love to hear from any experienced shader writers, lighters and compositors. If you are interested in her professional services as a career coach, speaker, or recruiter, contact her at PamRecruit@q.com.