How to Approach Hiring Managers

By Nick D'Ambrosio

With so much conflicting information regarding how to find more quality job openings it is very difficult to know exactly what works and what doesn’t. For over a decade we have been fine tuning our methods and are confident we have a proven method for securing more interviews.

For this approach to be truly effective you must begin with a large list of potential companies. These companies also must be in an area where your skills and experience are valued. No approach will get good results if your targeting the wrong audience. Assuming you have done your homework and have identified the right types of companies to approach, its time to start communicating.

Who do I approach?

Blindly sending cover letters and resumes to job postings or search firms is not a good use of your time. In this market, you need to use a better approach if you expect to create quality career opportunities.

Once  you have your list (we recommend 100 companies) you need to find the person you should be approaching. Who would you report to? While finding this persons name can be difficult when targeting large organizations, it is not difficult if you focus on smaller ones.  Assume the VP of Sales is the person doing the hiring. You can typically find their name by visiting the company website or by using one of the many business networking sites like LinkIn, Plaxo etc. You can also try calling the main office and asking for the persons name. Again, this can be tough if you are targeting large organizations but works well when calling on smaller companies.

Once you have the persons name, you need to find their email address. It will typically be one of five possible formats. If you know the company uses "" and the VP of Sales is Robert Smith try the following:,,,

While this approach may not seem refined, it works.

How do I approach this person?

Our experience has proven the best way to get a hiring manager to respond to you is to use email. In fact over 90% of hiring managers we polled said they prefer a short e-mail over a phone call. No one wants to listen to a long voice mail, write down a number and play phone tag with a stranger.

The subject line will determine if your email gets read or deleted. Be creative and ask yourself what would prompt you to open an email if you were looking for talent. If you were the hiring manager for a startup storage company, would you open an email with this subject line?

Subject: Top EMC Talent  


The body of the email must quickly convey why this person should respond to you. You are not the only person who is trying to get their attention. To achieve this you need to quickly let them know you have relevant experience that can  help them achieve their goals. Your goal is to simply start dialogue with this person, not get an job offer. Too many people write long winded cover letters and emails that never get read. Your email should look like this.

Subject line: Top EMC Talent
I am beginning a career search and wanted to make a brief introduction. For the past 10years I have successfully sold storage solutions in the  NY/NJ area. I have consistently  averaged 150% of my sales quota and am ranked in the top 5% of our national sales team at EMC. I would like to discuss your hiring plans. Do you have 15 minutes for a discussion?


Tim Jones
This email clearly gives the person reading it a reason to respond. Smart hiring managers will respond even if they do not currently have an opening. One other major factor in getting a good response is always ending your dialogue with a  question. People feel compelled to respond.
If you do have a solid background, have targeted the correct person and are following the guidelines above, you will see the number of interviews you land increase dramatically.

Let us know how it works, good luck on your search.

Take advantage of our complimentary, job market evaluation call. One minor flaw in your search approach is enough to keep even the best talent from reaching their career goals. Contact an expert today at: 949.675.0000 ext 101