How to Optimize Your Résumé for StartupsBy Chris Muir
How do you write or rewrite your résumé if you want a job at a startup? Here are some tips to make your CV stand out to startup founders and increase your chances of getting the job.
Rejection is an inherent part of the hiring process. Traditionally, companies took the lead in rejecting candidates that didn’t meet their hiring criteria (usually through an automated email with promises to keep a resume “on file”). More recently, skyrocketing demand for software engineers and other technical hires has shifted the hiring balance in favor of job seekers. Technical candidates are receiving more outreach than ever and ultimately rejecting companies at some point during the interview process.
At Underdog.io, our process is similarly candidate-centric. When we share job seekers with our exclusive network of technology companies, founders, hiring managers, and internal recruiters at each company reach out directly to candidates, who then pick and choose which companies align best with their interests and career goals.
And if a company isn’t a fit? Then it’s time to tell them no. Rejection emails are difficult to write and uncomfortable to send, but trust us, it’s always better to say something (even if it’s awkward) than nothing at all.
Here’s some advice on how to let companies down gently.
Be gracious. It’s important to let a company know you’re flattered by their interest in you. They took the time to review your resume and background and liked you so much that they wanted to have a conversation to get to know you better. Show them your appreciation by letting them know how thankful you are that they reached out.
Tell them why. It’s ok to say no! If a company isn’t aligned with what you’re looking for and you know this off the bat, it’s better to let them know immediately, rather than wasting both their time and yours by going through the process just to go through the process. Be open (within reason) about why you’re declining the interview. The company will appreciate your honest feedback.
Thank them again. It doesn’t hurt to thank a company again for their consideration and wish them luck. Plus, it leaves the door open should your employment situation or interest in the company change in the future.
Three templates you can use:
Rejection is never easy, but remember: it’s more important to say something (even if it’s disappointing) than nothing at all.
Every week we send out a newsletter called Ruff Notes with our personal thoughts on something interesting we’ve read, as well as product updates and news from our community.