Landing a Job You Are Overqualified For

by RecruiTips 30. August 2011 13:48

There are plenty of practical reasons to apply to a position for which you are overqualified.  The tough job market has forced many skilled workers to accept jobs beneath their level of experience.  Some people need jobs that accommodate a remote location; others are looking for a better work/life balance.  Regardless of your reason for wanting a lower-level job, they can actually be surprisingly hard to land!  If a recruiter feels you are overqualified, he or she could very well choose not to follow up with you.  Here are some tips for applying to a job when you are overqualified:

1.    Be aware of how recruiters view you as a candidate.  Based on both experience and common misperception, many recruiters believe that an overqualified applicant will make demands that recruiters will not be able to accommodate.  In addition, they fear that they will not be able to retain the candidate the second a better offer comes along.  Try to convey that they should not expect this from you.

2.    Craft an unintimidating resume.  If you have a long list of experiences, pick only the most relevant ones to put on your resume.  It would also be wise to pick past positions you were in for an extended period of time, as it may ease the recruiter’s concern that you might pick up and leave. 

3.    Submit a customized cover letter.  If you genuinely want to work at this company, you should do your best to convey it in your cover letter.  The more customized and passionate, the better.  Explain why you want to work for the company and what in particular you can contribute.

4.    Be honest.  If you have a good reason for wanting this position, share it with the recruiter.  It will only help your recruiter trust your intentions.

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