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Advice / Succeeding at Work / Management

A Job Application Auto-Response That Will Actually Make You Happy

When you apply for a job, one of two things typically happens: Either you receive a standard “We’ve received your application and will be in touch shortly” auto-response, or you get radio silence and are left wondering whether your application actually made it into the hiring manager’s inbox.

Either way, it’s not a very fun experience for you, the job seeker, who has just spent two hours pouring your heart and soul into a cover letter.

So we loved when we saw a totally different approach from NYC-based Trello, which creates a project management tool that helps people and companies organize their lives and work.

OK, it’s still an automated response that’s sent to all job seekers upon submitting their applications. But, as you’ll see, it has a ton more personality—and some actually helpful information for applicants. Instead of a sterile canned response, it feels like the beginning of a conversation. And at the very least, it’ll definitely make you smile.

Which makes us think: What other boring work-related documents could be transformed into something that makes our customers, co-workers, or potential employees just a little bit happier? It might make you rethink how you write meeting agendas, job descriptions, team updates, and more.

Check out Trello’s jobs auto-responder below, and get inspired today. (Oh, and if you actually want to receive this message, you can apply for one of Trello’s open positions.)

Hurrah! We have received your job application. At least, we think it’s yours. It is possible that someone who thinks very highly of you is forwarding around your resume while pretending to be you. That’s not a bad thing, is it?

In any case, this is an automatic email, sent by a mindless robot, to let you know that we’re absolutely thrilled that you would be interested in working for Trello. We’re very honored.

Even though this is an automatic email, it’s not the usual blah blah, so please read on!

First of all—what to expect? Well, it may take a week or ten days (or even three or four as our volume of applications have increased) before a developer gets around to reviewing your application. We’re a small company, and to be honest sometimes eating lunch seems more important than reviewing resumes. But we will assure you that a real live human being, not an automated computer zapper program, will review your application carefully, and only after drinking plenty of coffee and getting lots of sleep and exercise, and under no circumstances will we reject your application because you lack ten years of experience in a technology that was invented only last year.

Next—yes, you will hear back from us. It is our policy to reply to all applications, even if we have to send you an unpleasant “go away, you smell bad” letter. We always tell people when we’re rejecting them for olfactory reasons.

Now, this bit is really important: PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE make sure that when you reply to us, you reply to this email (or at least preserve the subject line with our case ID number in it). We keep track of all this stuff in FogBugz and that ugly case ID number in the subject is the only thing that keeps us sane.

Finally—there’s probably some additional information we need to consider your application:

1. Where you’re located in the world

2. A phone number where you can be reached

3. How you heard about the position you’re interested in

4. For applicants residing within the United States: Whether or not you have the permanent, unrestricted, legal right to work in the United States

5. For applicants residing outside of the United States: Whether or not your workday overlaps New York afternoons (1700 - 2200 GMT)

If you forgot to tell us any of these things, just hit “reply” and let us know now.

OK, for an automated bot, I’m rather talkative, aren’t I? I’ll shut up now, and I assure you that I look forward with zeal to tracking down a developer, interrupting his or her lunch, and making him or her review your application.

The Recruiting Robot at Trello

P.S. If for some reason you are not actually applying for a job, or if you just wrote with a question about Trello, I apologize, for I am a stupid recruiting robot, built without much cognitive ability, and rest assured that an actual human will really look at your email and reply to it appropriately.

Photo of mail icon courtesy of Shutterstock.