Tips for Resume Writing
- Brevity is a must! You’ll have about 20 seconds to convey your message. A resume is a profile, not a biography. Remember, your resume is designed to pique an employer’s interest. Stick to relevant experiences that show off your most valuable assets. Wow the employer with information that demonstrates your skills and abilities, and shows why the employer can’t afford to be without you. Prove that you are worth interviewing.
Emphasize experiences that would be of interest to a potential employer. To demonstrate your skills, cite specific examples of things you have done that prove you have the skills you claim. Point to any meaningful and tangible accomplishments as possible.
The appearance of your resume is critical. If it looks sloppy or is hard to read it might be thrown out! Make an extra effort to prepare a carefully typed presentation on good quality paper. Make the most of white space.
Stick to traditional font of Times New Roman, 11 point size, and black type against a white paper. You might try a different type size for your name and the companies you have worked for, perhaps your title, but try to be consistent. Go easy on boldface type, italics, and underlining.
Always submit your resume in pdf format so your formatting remains the same.
Use reverse chronological order. List your present, or most recent job first, and then work backwards. State the complete name of the company you work for, or have worked for, and what they do, and how long you were there (month and year). List the position you held and your accomplishments. You don’t have to use full sentences. Begin with verbs. “Managed company tax reporting, finance, invoicing, purchasing,” for example.
Get rid of objectives and summary. An employer doesn’t care about your objective. He cares about his.
Skip the photo. Skip personal information such as married with three kids. Sounds stable to you, but to a hiring authority looking for someone to travel, it may keep you from being interviewed.
Stories sell. Numbers, statistics, percentages get attention if you put in bold type. Increased profit by this 28%. Came under budget by 30%.
Fuzzy key words and phrases should be avoided. These include customer-oriented, excellent communications skills, and creative. These words lack meaning and do absolutely nothing to help you get an interview.
Tips for a Successful Job Interview
Speak clearly and enthusiastically about your experiences and skills.
Be professional, but don’t be afraid to let your personality shine through. Be yourself.
Be positive. Employers do not want to hear a litany of excuses or bad feelings about a negative experience. Be prepared to market your skills and experiences as they relate to the job described.
Research the company before the interview. What activities are carried out by the employer? Researching an employer during the job search can help determine more about that organization and your potential place in it. Know how you can help the company and prepare questions to ask the interviewer about the company.
Arrive early for the interview. Plan to arrive for your interview 10-15 minutes before the appointed time. Arriving too early confuses the employer and creates an awkward situation. By the same token, arriving late creates a bad first impression and may doom your chances.
Ask for directions when making arrangements for the interview.
Carry a portfolio or a notepad.
Bring extra resumes and a list of questions you need answered. You may refer to your list of questions to be sure you’ve gathered the information you need to make a decision. Do not be preoccupied with taking notes during the interview.
After the interview, take time to write down the names and titles (check spelling) of all your interviewers, your impressions, remaining questions and information learned. If you are interviewing regularly, this process will help you keep employers and circumstances clearly defined.
Follow up the interview with a thank-you letter. Employers regard this gesture as evidence of your attention to detail, as well as an indication of your interest in the position.