Daily Tip: Dare You Apply for the Same Job Twice?

shutterstock_Alita Bobrov

It’s a conundrum that confronts every job seeker at some point in his or her career. You applied for what sounded like a pretty cool job and never heard back; weeks or months later, as you scan through the listings, you see that the position is still open. Do you risk applying again?

The answer is yes—with a pretty big catch. Larger companies use automated software in order to screen cover letters and resumes, and there’s a good chance that your first application was rejected by the system before human eyes could see your qualifications. Revising your materials could boost your chances of getting though the screening software the second time around.

That being said, applying a second time carries more risk with smaller firms, which often boast HR operations exclusively run by human beings. In such cases, you need to evaluate whether it’s worth annoying those humans a second time, especially if they rejected you initially. If something’s changed in your career—you’ve learned a new skill, achieved a relevant certification or degree, or completed a huge project that shows your increased competency—it might be worth taking another shot at the position, provided you update your cover letter and resume accordingly.

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6 Responses to “Daily Tip: Dare You Apply for the Same Job Twice?”

  1. How would it hurt to apply a second time?

    If it works out the 2nd time, great.
    If it doesn’t, oh, well.

    It’s not like the HR person (if there is one) will even remember you from the first batch. And if he/she/the algorithm does, what? They’re going to burn your house down?

  2. I actually did this a few years ago and ended up getting the job! This was at a company of ~1000 people at the time. A couple of additional notes in this case — I interviewed with the company the first time, and I thought it went well, but ultimately they did not fill the position with anyone. Fast forward a couple months, the position was re-listed with some changes to what they were looking for, and so I re-applied. My hunch that the first interview had gone well was confirmed as they called me pretty quickly. Upon my second interview I met a couple of additional people, and was offered the position before I left.

  3. Patricia Mollen

    I did this — I applied 3 times for same position & was hired but later found out why
    the position was open for so long. It was horrible — I eventually was dismissed after
    3 months & discovered that I was 5th person hired/dismissed in 18 months.

    • Jeannette

      A similar situation happened to me recently. . . and now I notice a pattern of the same company placing ads for the same position every three months or so. What a hostile work environment that turned out to be.

  4. “In such cases, you need to evaluate whether it’s worth annoying those humans a second time, especially if they rejected you initially.”

    What? If they rejected you before then what do you care if you annoy them? Go ahead and make changes to your resume and apply again.