Does Applying for Multiple Jobs at One Company Make You Seem Desperate?

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August 8, 2020
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min read

It is normal to question how you look in the eyes of a hiring manager, recruiter, or potential employer. Whether it may be in a relationship, or when applying for a credit card, or in a job interview, we often worry about coming across as desperate. 

Being desperate means you are showing a hopeless sense that a situation is so bad as to be impossible to deal with or that you are in a place where all else has failed and have little hope for success. Unfortunately, if you hate your job or have been unemployed for a while, you may be feeling a little desperate. But you can control whether you let that feeling show during your job search. 

Applying for Multiple Jobs at One Company

Yes, this action makes you seem desperate. Yes, this can turn employers off when evaluating your application. Maybe in your mind you love the company and would to work in any position for them which is why you want to apply to all their postings.

But in the eyes of an employer, this behavior comes across as you wanting a job so badly, you are willing to settle and take whatever job you're offered. You’d do anything to work for the incredibly cool, successful company you love, but applying to many jobs at that company will not increase your chances of getting hired there.

Quality Over Quantity

Your job application and the interview process provide potential employers insight into how you would perform in the position. Applying for a position you are qualified for, have experience in, and are passionate about signifies that you will put in hard work, dedicate yourself to what you will being doing in that role, and will be an asset to the company. Applying for many positions may signify that you aren't you are not dedicated to doing a certain job that you are unfocused. 

Think of this in terms of dating

When you are looking for a significant other, someone who is willing to date anyone is way less appealing than someone who makes you feel special, like you're the one, you are exactly what they have been looking for. Use the passion you have for that company to show you are a great fit for a particular job.

Avoid talking about (or showing), how badly you need a job, don't beg for it. You never want to be hired out of sympathy.

Not only could this hurt your chances of being hired but even worse, it could be used by other employers to hire you for the wrong reasons. You don't want your eagerness to be taken as vulnerability leading to being take advantage of in roles where you are underpaid, overqualified, and not passionate about.

Show Your Interest in Various Aspects of the Company 

You can show you are interested in multiple aspects within the company without seeming desperate. There are ways to express your eagerness in a positive manner. You can mention during a job interview that you’re open to other roles at the company or that you are applying for this job because it sounds like an exciting opportunity and you think you’d be a great fit, but you're open to other open positions as they see fit. 

Being confident in your skills and abilities to exceed in your work and showing that you are the best fit for a specific role not only boosts your odds of getting noticed, it helps hiring managers in making their decision for the position. One strong application that shows you are a perfect fit for a certain position is more effective than many applications that show you are an okay fit for various positions.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I tailor my applications when applying for multiple jobs at the same company to avoid seeming desperate?

When applying for multiple positions within the same company, it's important to customize each application to highlight how your skills and experiences align specifically with the job requirements. Focus on the unique value you bring to each role and ensure your cover letters and resumes reflect the distinct qualifications for each position. This tailored approach demonstrates a thoughtful and strategic job search rather than desperation.

Is there an optimal number of jobs to apply for at one company without appearing too eager?

There isn't a one-size-fits-all answer, but a good rule of thumb is to limit your applications to positions that you are highly qualified for and genuinely interested in. Applying to two or three roles that match your skill set and career goals is usually reasonable. It shows your enthusiasm for the company while still maintaining a targeted job search strategy.

Should I disclose in my applications that I've applied for other roles within the company?

Transparency can be beneficial. If the company's application system allows you to note other positions you've applied for, it's a good practice to do so. This can help the HR team understand your broad interest in the company and may even aid in identifying the best fit for your skills. However, make sure to emphasize your specific interest in each role to avoid the impression that you are indiscriminately applying to every opening.

Dave Fano

Founder and CEO of Teal, Dave is a serial entrepreneur with 20+ years of experience building products & services to help people leverage technology and achieve more with less.

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