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The Importance of a Subject Line in your Job Application

You have put in a lot of effort in designing and preparing your CV. After days of hard work, it is finally ready. You have an objective now; to ensure it gets to the right people.

There is no point if you have the best resume but it does not get read. You do not want it sent to the "recycle bin" or stuck in someone's inbox. It now becomes important that you craft an eye-catching subject line for your resume, one that compels the receiver to open your email, get impressed and call you. The objective of your CV is to get you an interview and the interview, a job.

Below are some best tips for writing a resume email subject line.

1. Don’t forget to write a SUBJECT LINE

In the excitement to send your CV or even a simple email, we sometimes must be reminded.

The subject line comes up in the inbox very decisively and often lacks a good subject line, lands the email in the achieved, junk, or deleted folder. So do not forget to write an eye-catching subject line

2. Keep the subject line PROFESSIONAL

Keep your subject line professional and not casual. Using lines like - "Hey There" or "Please Call Me" or even using "your contact number", "email", "Touching Base", "Following Up" etc. in the subject line is a big NO.

I have listed some examples of subject lines at the end of this post.

3. Keep the subject line SHORT

Email marketing services recommend using no more than 9 words or 60 characters as a best practice for a subject line. Keep your subject line short, the first few words are very important.

4. Follow given GUIDELINES

When submitting your resume, it is important that you read the instructions e.g Submit your resume and cover letter to with the Subject "General Manager-Finance, Job ID: 125279” In such cases, you will want to use the exact subject line given to you, since filtering options could be used. You do not want your application to go un-noticed or the reader to think you lack abilities to follow guidelines.

5. Highlight Your VALUE

In the event there are no subject line instructions given, write your own pitch and position yourself correctly. A combination of Name + Job Title + Education + Skills + Experience is perfect

e.g Dinesh DSouza-Recruitment Director with an MBA OR

Dinesh DSouza-20 years Recruitment Expertise

6. Make The Reader Want To OPEN YOUR EMAIL

When you are applying for a job via an email to a recruiter, you should explicitly mention the job title. Recruiters are often hiring for many positions, and it will be easy to pick your resume if it meets the need of the hour. The more specific your subject line, the more effective the result. If you are connecting with a networking contact, you may want to use “Following up to potentially join your team at Genesis” or “Dinesh from Genesis - Thank you for your time" or “Fellow St. Mary's alumni regarding your LinkedIn post about open roles.”

7. Be CAREFUL of these subject lines

It is frustrating when your email gets no replies. But do not use subject lines like “I am not pushing you” or "I have not heard back" or "???" or "I submitted my resume 10 days ago”, this is not going to encourage a response. In fact, it will probably annoy the person.

8. RE-READ the Subject Line once done

You may want to check for grammatical errors, spelling mistakes, and how the text sounds to you as a reader (not the writer).

Have a look at some examples of subject lines.

When Applying for a Job

  • Business Development Manager with an MBA - Dinesh DSouza

  • Human Resource Generalist (GES-7881) - Dinesh DSouza

  • Financial Analyst Jon Application (Dinesh DSouza)

  • Dinesh DSouza - Application for a Research Assistant vacancy

  • Dinesh DSouza - Vacancy for the position of Recruitment Manager

  • Dinesh DSouza - Follow-up on a Recruitment Director position

When Been Referred

  • Dinesh DSouza - Referred by Zain Christine

  • Highly recommended by Mikelle MaryAnn

  • Following up on Daniel Zachary's introduction

  • Customer Success Manager application (referred by Dinesh DSouza)

  • Referred by Dinesh DSouza for an email marketing manager role (R122)

When Reaching Out to a Networking Contact

  • Following up on our conversation at the Dubai Expo (Dinesh DSouza)

  • Continuing our conversation on SEO from yesterday

  • Fellow Xavier's alumni from yesterday’s webinar

  • Following up to potentially join the Genesis team

  • Sending my resume as promised (Dinesh DSouza)


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