Tag Archives: cv

Your voicemail just cost you the job

It’s true. You just missed out on your dream job because of your voicemail. It’s unfortunate because your resume was excellent and you really were a perfect fit. Unfortunately though, every interaction a recruiter or hiring manager has with a candidate is part of the screening process – even your voicemail!

Candidates often underestimate what a voicemail can say about them as a first impression. We’ve pulled together some of the most common and outrageous mistakes candidates are making with their voicemail:

No voicemail at all

We get it. A missed call is suffice. You see your friend called. You call them back when you can/want to. Who leaves voicemails these days anyway? But when you start sending your CV out to recruiters and hiring managers, we don’t want the phone ringing out or have a machine tell us to try again later. We want you to call us back when you can talk. A recruiter will want to know we have got the message through to you. We also want to hear your voice.

We’ll convert your message to text

Yeah, no. This doesn’t work. Ever. And a recruiter cannot explain what they want to say in 10 words. You are not a robot and we don’t want to talk at your phone like you are one.

Barely audible message

An unclear and crackly message or a loud background that we can barely hear the message is not selling you to us. If you cannot leave a clear and concise message on your own phone, how will you be communicating with clients and customers in your job? It rings alarm bells.

Inappropriate Recorded Message

“Yo Yo Yo – leave a ****ing message” – Sounds made up right? Unfortunately, not. This is an actual message of a candidate applying for a senior role within a corporate organisation (and on paper they looked good). PLEASE do not have an inappropriate or rude voicemail on your phone. It’s never a good idea. Ever.

Telling us your life story in one message

“I can’t answer the phone right now as I am busy at work and in meetings. I will however be available between 12pm and 1pm to take and return calls. Alternatively you can phone me after 5.30pm when I will be able to answer. If I still miss your call, I might be on the bus or on another call. Please do leave a message with your phone number and reason for calling. Let me know the best time to call you back and I look forward to speaking with you soon…”

While, incredibly polite and helpful. You lost us. Too many excuses and options and sounds kind of desperate…

The perfect voicemail is short, sweet and clear

It tells us you are efficient, professional and polite. Definitely a candidate worth speaking to!!

“This is Joe Bloggs. Please leave a message and I will return your call as soon as I can. Cheers.”

Can You Tell A Suitable Candidate From Their CV?

Can you tell a suitable candidate from looking at their CV? Here are our 5 Top Tips to spot a great candidate just from just their CV:


Sh&t happens! Travel, contracts, redundancy and life happens to the best of us! But -there comes a time in your working life where you should have stuck something out for a good 2 years plus .. that’s what we look for. Juniors are pretty much excused from all of the above.


Internal promotion, leading a project, being headhunted by an ex boss – these are all great signs!


If the header on a CV reads “Cirriculum Vitae” – pass!! Rambling and long winded cover letters also tell you something … having said that – not all roles require great spelling – so different horses for different courses!


Would you move from one company to another to do the exact same job? Nor would we – so look for the ability to step up and hire on attitude over a skill that can be trained. Will the candidate’s toolkit translate to your business?


This is tricky without meeting someone in person – however where they have previously worked may be an indicator i.e. huge multinationals or small family businesses. Are the types of company’s complementary or polar opposite to yours?


Remember – a CV is only a snapshot of a person and the whole picture doesn’t come together until you meet them face to face. Sometimes “left of field” candidates are the most successful. Trust your recruiter (if you use one) to fill in the blanks for you …