Seek.com.au is, by far, the most popular and dominant job platform in Australia, with an eye-popping 3.8 million users each year and some jobs seeing upwards of 200+ applications. These numbers are staggering. When dealing with this type of volume, you’ll need to up your game if you want to stand out from the competition.
Here, I want to lift the lid on some of the mysteries surrounding how the SEEK backend works (i.e., from a recruiter’s perspective) and share some insider tips that you will need to adopt to improve your chances of your profile getting noticed.
1) Understanding The Volume of Agencies vs. Employers Jobs on Seek
Employers will often have high expectations of candidate matches as their emphasis is heavily on recruiting for a specific job, while recruitment agencies have a similar requirement but are also looking to build a stockpile of candidates.So you might find yourself being called in for a job (by a recruitment agency) that has nothing to do with the original position you applied for.
Recruiters will advertise a mix of sole agency (exclusive) roles as well as duplicate jobs, where both an employer and an agency are advertising the same job. To confuse things further, more than one recruitment agency might be advertising the same job.
Therefore, it is vital that you keep track of who you have applied to, which agencies and employers you have spoken to, and where your resume is ultimately going.
2. Make Sure Contact Details Are Up to Date and Correct
While it might come across as a basic tip, it’s astonishing how often people stumble right out of the gate. The Seek backend platform will list your email address and primary phone number from the details you provided during sign-up—not from your CV/Resume.
If there a syntax error in your contact details, you may not know until much later on. And if a recruiter can’t reach you, they will simply move on to the next candidate.
3. Be Prepared for Lots of “Unknown” Incoming Phone Calls
One of the biggest mysteries recruiters will tell you is just how many applicants apply to jobs but are not contactable or they return phone calls some one, two, or three days later (after a message has been left for them). If a recruitment agency or employer is trying to call you, you need to call them back within a few hours or, at the very latest, the next day.
Be prepared for numerous calls from unknown numbers and answer every call professionally, even if you think it’s a spam call. Only answer a call if you can speak openly; there’s nothing worse than a candidate who is trying to whisper cryptic responses. Also, consider setting up a professional voicemail message in case you miss a call. First impressions matter!
4. Know Your Target and Don’t Apply to Everything!
If you find yourself applying to 100 jobs a week, it’s time for a reality check. Seek isn’t a numbers game; it’s about quality over quantity.
When your name starts popping up for every imaginable job, recruiters might perceive it as a sign of desperation and confusion about your career goals. Your profile’s appeal to recruiters can quickly fade, potentially resulting in automatic rejections without them even glancing at your application.
Interesting Fact: Recruiters have the inside scoop on your application habits. They can see how frequently you apply and the types of positions you’re going for. If there’s a mismatch, like a scattergun approach with too many different positions, you might just raise a red flag in their eyes. Time to refine your strategy!
5. Be One of the first to Apply
Recruiters often begin reviewing applications within just 1-2 days of posting a job, and within 5-10 full working days, the majority of applications will come through. Therefore, submitting your application during the very early stages of the job posting can improve your visibility, especially if the candidates are being worked through on a daily basis.
Applicants received later on in the campaign can sometimes be sidelined, especially if a shortlist has already been prepared.
6. Be Selective When Automating Your Job Alerts
Setting up job alerts on Seek is akin to having a dedicated job scout tirelessly working for you round the clock. Yet, it’s crucial to inject some specificity and selectivity into your alert criteria, covering job title, location, and industry.
If your daily job notifications resemble an endless stream of pages, chances are you’ve cast your search net too wide. This broad approach could lead to waning interest, causing you to overlook that perfect role—akin to finding a needle in a haystack. To combat this, I recommended that you consider configuring two or three job alert types, ensuring that your primary target takes centre stage in your daily review. It’s all about refining your strategy for optimal job-hunting success!
7. Tweak Your Job Titles to Match the Adverts
Simple tweaks to your position title can make a world of difference. The Seek Candidate Management Platform will often give the recruiter a quick “snippet” of the candidate name, their current position title, and the company they are working for. If recruiters are overwhelmed by applications, they will often skim read through position titles to identify quick wins. Therefore, if possible, you’ll need to make sure your current job title (or most recent) is as closely aligned to the role being advertised. Whilst we appreciate this can’t be a realistic strategy for everyone, if you can do this, will often pay rewards i.e. maximize visibility.
The below image is a snap shot of SEEK’s Candidate Management Platform.
Here you can clearly see how the system has pulled the candidates Name + Current Position title and any other data that the candidate has entered when applying.
8. Seek’s ATS Algorithms – How to Increase Your Priority Rating
Seek employs basic algorithms (Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS)) to prioritise applications based on relevance, and this function can be used by the recruiter to quickly sort applicants.
Therefore, try to optimise your CV for Seek’s ATS by incorporating industry-relevant keywords. Use language from the job description and requirements to increase your chances of passing through the initial screening process. Wherever possible, tailor your CV/Resume or keywords section for each application, emphasising skills and experiences that directly align with the specific job.
SEEK also employs AI (ATS) based filtering to enhance candidate matches. This is a key component of their Talent Search functionality, allowing recruiters to discover candidate matches within the database. Utilising ATS/Keywording will elevate your profile in this Talent bank.
The below image is of a candidate match.
9. Research a Job Before Applying: Precision Matters
Before hitting the “Apply” button, take a deeper look at the job ad. If an advertisement is providing the company details, then delve into the company website, social channels, and recent news.
This type of insight can be invaluable in crafting a resume and cover letter that really stands out. What’s more, you will begin to separate yourself from all the others that are using a “click and apply” strategy without any thought process.
10. Cover Letters: Tailor, Don’t Template
Believe it or not, employers and recruiters still read Cover Letters! But a generic cover letter won’t cut it .
If you have the time, craft a personalised cover letter for each application, addressing the specific requirements of the role. Use their job description and any information you have gathered through your own research to demonstrate why your background and experience makes sense for their company, industry and position being advertised.
A well-crafted cover letter not only complements your resume but also provides a narrative that engages the recruiter, making a compelling case for why you’re the perfect fit.
11.SEEK’s In-Demand Job Search Tool
Seek has a number of backend features and tools available for candidates. The pick of the bunch has to be their Payscale tracker, which provides real-time data on what jobs are in demand and movements in pay variations. You can quickly search by industry and then “View Jobs” based on popular search terms.
You’ll find the link here:
Remember, no SEEK profile is complete without a perfect Resume.
At iTouch we have a host of resume writing services that will ensure your application not only flies through the toughest of recruitment selections, but also readily peers in the top 5% of canned profiles.
Contact our Resume Writers today for a free consultation.
Frequently Asked Questions
I’ve applied to over 100 jobs and never heard back.
Chances are something is very wrong in your application strategy, most likely applying to the wrong type of jobs or that your CV/resume is completely out of sync. Also, double-check that you have included the right contact details.
Should I attach my resume in Word or PDF format?
Either is fine, although PDF is often preferred as it protects the formatting of the document.
Why can’t I see a salary range on the job?
The Seek backend platform gives the hiring manager or recruiter the opportunity to either show a salary or hide this information. There are several reasons why the company may prefer not to advertise this data, such as not revealing existing salary scales, considering multiple candidate level options, or they simply have chosen not to reveal it at this stage.
A recruiter won’t give me the company name. What should I do?
It’s essential that you keep track of where your resume is going. Agencies should be telling you the company they would like to put your details forward to. If they don’t, this can be a red flag. If you are in any way concerned about your privacy, then withdraw your application.