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Pitfalls of Job Search Procrastination

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** This article originally appeared on the blog ****

By Marcia Powers
Contributor, Career Services

It’s 11:33 p.m. on a Friday evening, and you are zealously typing away at your keyboard. You’re on a time crunch to get your resume updated before your application is due at midnight for a position you’ve recently discovered. Well, you actually found out about it a few days ago, but you didn’t have the time to get everything together until just now. Besides, you’re a champ at turning things in right before the final deadline. From college exam papers to big office projects, you’ve mastered the art of procrastination, and you’re confident that your application will be submitted, as always, in the nick of time.

Many people can thrive under this type of pressure and are perfectly capable of turning in projects in a short period of time. However, burning the midnight oil may not be the best method to employ when you are applying for a new position.

If you discover a position that you intend to apply for, it’s in your best interest to start the process as soon as possible. Before you start thinking you’ve got plenty of time, keep the following in mind to avoid the possible pitfalls of procrastination.

Additional documentation may be required in order to complete your application.

Some organizations require additional documentation to be submitted with your job application. For example, your college transcript may be required in order to confirm your educational qualifications. If you do not have the required documentation on hand, it is imperative to allow enough time to properly generate or request these documents. Some documents, like official transcripts or military paperwork, could take several days to obtain.

The position opening could close before the proposed deadline.

The hiring organization may choose to pull the vacancy announcement early if they’ve already had a plethora of qualified applicants. Keep this possibility in mind, especially if the job announcement states that applications will be accepted on a rolling basis or that the position will remain “open until filled.” It is especially important to apply early for these positions; otherwise you’ll run the risk of losing out on a great opportunity simply because you waited too long.

Be sure to factor in additional time for a resume review.

It’s important to have another set of eyes look at your resume before you submit it. Although you’ve already scanned through your resume for spelling errors and formatting inconsistencies, you’d be surprised by what you can miss, especially if you’ve rushed the review process. Allow adequate time (at least a day) for someone you trust to carefully review your information.

When it comes to job applications, don’t let procrastination hinder a great opportunity. Be proactive, and apply early!

We are always eager to hear from our readers. Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions or suggestions regarding CareerAlley content.

Good luck in your search,


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