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Q: I am a supervisor and have been hiring for a number of
entry-level positions for a company south of Boston. We call and email
candidates. They take their time getting back to us and then seem
irritated when we have already move ahead with other candidates. Can you
tell candidates who have submitted a resume to pick up their phones,
clear out their voicemail inbox messages and to check their emails, even
over the weekend? Some candidates take 2 to 3 days to get back to us
and we already have candidates on our schedules to be interviewed.

A: I agree! It is probably my number one pet peeve on the candidate
side of the recruiting process. A common complaint from candidates is
that they feel there is a “black hole” when submitting a resume. However, on the employer side, employers can get easily frustrated when a
candidate is unresponsive. Candidates should be checking voicemail and
email daily, if not several times per day, even on weekends. Some
recruiters will have the quiet time to reach out to candidates on
weekends and it is always helpful when a candidate replies in a speedy
manner. A full voicemail inbox is beyond frustrating! Unless there is a
some type of family or personal emergency, a candidate should do their
very best to return an email or a voicemail within 24 hours, if not

A prompt reply to a company’s voicemail or email demonstrates serious
interest and a sense of urgency. “This is important to me!” is the
message a candidate is sending to a prospective employer! A delayed
response indicates that other matters are more important.

With cell phones, most of us can retrieve emails and voicemail
messages quickly. Using technology wisely is smart with respect to a job

Candidates – you heard it here!

Pattie Hunt Sinacole is a human resources expert and works for First Beacon Group in Hopkinton, an HR consulting firm. She contributes weekly to Jobs and the Boston Sunday Globe Money & Careers section.