Some time ago, I tried to apply for a job and, I must say, I acted in a really poor way. Let me explain:

  • I had a job, and I was happy with it, but I wanted to have some fresh air and switch positions (basically, going from web developer to mobile application developer).
  • I saw that one of the most successful companies in my country had the perfect spot for me. To sum up, everything I personally requested was covered in this position.
  • I saw, on the other side, that what they were doing wasn't 100% usable to me, from a user point of view, so I started having ideas on how to improve it. After talking about it with other people (experts and non experts), we all agreed there were some flaws in the company's app.
  • I sent them a CV and a cover letter, in which I was really enthusiastic about what I could achieve in the company, making their app better and more usable.

As you can imagine, I wasn't aware of what I did until I hit the Send button. So, it is clear that anybody telling you "ok, your job is done, I will do it better without your mistakes" sounds really pedantic to me now (I didn't say it that way, but you get the point). They did never answer, but in the job hunting platform my resume was marked as "Rejected", so they clearly read it. I din't receive any specific feedback as to why I was unsuccessful

Almost 12 months later, they have placed again the same offer. Chances are they see my name and just skip my own resume, but in case they want to give me a second opportunity, how should I face it? Let me put it easy:

How can I redeem myself after my first terrible cover letter, without crawling?

  • Hi @Korcholis. Couple of quick questions, did you receive any feedback as to why you were unsuccessful the first time you applied and how long has it been since you originally applied? Both of these may influence potential answers. – Clair Aug 7 '14 at 9:22
  • Hi @Clair, thanks for commenting. No, they didn't give me feedback. I just received a "Rejected" from the job platform, and it's been about a year, a little less. I asked it around Oct2013 – Korcholis Aug 7 '14 at 9:27
  • Hi @Korcholis. I've edited the question slightly to include the additional information you've provided. – Clair Aug 7 '14 at 9:46
  • 1
    Note that you are implying that there is a relationship between the rejection and your mail. There may not be any. – user8036 Aug 7 '14 at 11:23
  • Totally right, @JanDoggen. However, the way I sold myself is not the way to go (I know that now, as somebody did this to me in my previous job, when I helped hiring technical people) – Korcholis Aug 7 '14 at 12:53

A year is enough time for someone to reapply. Don't mention anything about your previous application including that cover letter. They may have purged your name off their systems and there is no need to resurrect old ghosts.

While you have ideas of your own, don't volunteer them. Listen first, then speak. You don't want to be caught enthusiastically advocating ideas that they rejected in their internal debates. And if those internal debates were rancorous, your mention of these ideas may bring back some bad memories. I never put forward any idea of mine without giving the other party the option to turn it down and be comfortable about turning it down.

You didn't disclose anything about your cover letter that would enable me to conclude that your cover letter is what got you killed as an applicant. For this reason. I am mildly concerned that they rejected you based on other factors, like your qualifications.

  • Thanks for answering! So the best thing I could do is to just let it pass as nothing happened and try again? Sounds great to me. Anyway, the way I mentioned it in the cover letter was radically abrupt, telling that the app should have this and that, and if they let me in, I'd make the downloads increase. Pretty pedantic. As I told to Jan Doggen, I helped hiring another IT in my previous job, somebody did this too, and I just skipped the resume (for the same reason). That's why I kind of panicked about that right now. – Korcholis Aug 7 '14 at 12:59

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