I'm a third year undergraduate student and I have questions about three different scenarios:

1. Once applied to a job posting, which has a generic email "[email protected]", do I also mail my resume and cover letter to the hiring manager given that I find his/her name (Mr. Smith of XYZ company)?

2. Similar to number one, if the job was through an automatic HR system (Ex. Taleo), do I mail the resume and cover letter to the hiring manager?

3. Similar to above, if the email is instead to a person (ex. [email protected]), do I still mail the resume and cover letter to the hiring manager?

I read parts of John Lucht's book that snail mailing is a better method in terms of bypassing HR and being more likely for the hiring manager to read my resume than have HR go through their initial hiring process. 

Thanks for your comments in advance.

mattpalmer's picture

So many factors here -- mostly centered around the industry/company involved.  If the place is big and modern, the chances are all the applications go into some sort of computer program to sort, file, mangle, mutilate, and spindle -- in that situation, your hard-copy resume will probably be (at best) discarded without particular interest.  A smaller place, or a very "traditional" place may have an easier time dealing with a paper resume, but even then, if 90% of resumes are going via e-mail, unless you're an absolute stand-out in the crowd (in which case how you apply is almost certainly irrelevant) your resume is likely to get lost/misplaced/whatever.

Then, of course, there's places like my employer, where the only result you'd get from a snail-mailed resume is to have everyone crowd around to take a look at the anachronism, and see who is *completely* out of touch.  (We're an IT company)

Really, my best advice is to *follow the instructions*.  Trying to "game" the system and "stand out" with gimmicks is usually counter-productive.  You'll annoy many more people than you impress, and you're far better off putting the time and effort you'd otherwise put into tracking down the name and postal address of the hiring manager into making your resume and cover letter better. 

davidlin911's picture

 Thanks for the thoughtful reply. I also received advice that I should strictly follow the instructions.

acao162's picture

I actually disregard any applicant who doesn't follow the application instructions.  If you can't respect the "rules" for applying, are you going to respect other rules we have you don't like?

Something to think about.