Managing That Flood Of Applicant Email

It’s no secret that open jobs are being flooded with applications, thanks to so many unemployed media people (as well as the ones who still have jobs but are feeling nervous). And when you get that pile of email in, you, the recruiter, need to manage all of it without forgetting anyone, losing someone’s contact information, or accidentally e-mail blasting every job applicant without using a BCC. How do you manage the flood?

We attended a mediabistro.com breakfast yesterday that gave us and senior-level HR pros plenty of tricks for dealing with those e-mails. Read on for more.


About half of HR pros surveyed by mediabistro.com don’t send out a note when they get a new application; for jobseekers, this can be confusing and frustrating.

Try this: Use your autoresponder for more than just vacation. You can set your careers@yourcompany.com e-mail to kick back an automated “Thank you for your interest in this position” note.

More than half of those surveyed don’t send out a rejection letter or e-mail to unqualified applicants, but you can show some recruiter class (and brand your company as a great, considerate place to work in the process) by doing so.
Try this: Add applicants to your contacts list and keep them sorted. In Outlook, you can create a mail merge to then reply to all applicants in the “Rejected” category, for instance. (Ed.—for those of you lucky enough to work in Mac shops, Mail.app’s fully scriptable and can do a lot of these tricks for you quickly and easily.)

To keep multiple templates on hand, you can save them as Signatures. There’s virtually no limit on how much you can put in a signature (but if you throw in lots of HTML, you may get busted), so your many canned responses are just a click away.


If all this sounds too complicated, mediabistro.com’s own job board has debuted mass e-mail options for job posters. The service is in beta, and only works for jobs you’ve posted with us, but it’s free and exciting and works without extra frills and stuff that’ll bog you down. Check it out at your employer page.