I had a recent exchange with the chief pilot for a busy, year-round drop zone that operates multiple Cessna 182s and hires many pilots. Like many DZ operators, he gets dozens of pilot inquiries every week, so he has some ideas on how you can stand out. I’ll let him speak:
“I am very tired of getting emails that say ‘Hey, I got a pilot’s license, y’all hiring?’ [Others just] text saying they have a pilot’s license and are available. It’s rare they have a professional resume that is aviation oriented. You only get one chance to make a good first impression. If they can’t take the time to write a proper resume, I can’t take the time to interview them. So, please advise your candidates to prepare a proper aviation-oriented resume, with Job Objective: Skydive Pilot. Show total time. [Describe to] me how you were trained and got the time you have. Show planes flown and times in each.”
If you want your application to stand out, put together a one-page resume (Google is your friend.) with Job Objective: Skydive Pilot at the top. Show recent job history even if it isn’t aviation oriented; that shows you can hold a job. Make sure to show all of your flight training and a breakout of your logged time. Use the attached Pilot History Form to breakout your flight time. If you already have time in a 182 or 206, go ahead and list that out under “Make and Model.” If not, list your 172 time under there; DZ operators like to see high-wing airplane time. (But if you only have low-wing time, don’t worry, it’s an easy transition.) Insurance agencies require completion of a Pilot History Form when you get hired, so go ahead and get some familiarity with it.
Then, write a quick cover letter to each company or person you’re applying to, and attach your resume. I would recommend not only emailing it, but also sending it by mail. Then follow up with a text. Be ready to respond instantly if you get a call, email, or text back. These folks are busy, and they will simply move on to the next applicant if they don’t hear from you, even the same day. Good luck!