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How to write a resume, to get the job

So it is no longer 2006, jobs are not abundant and everyone is looking for one. The first step to getting your bills paid is applying. No, it isn’t. It’s perfecting your resume. I just quit my job, I’m serving notice, and I’m going through about thirty resumes a day, sometimes more, to find a suitable replacement.

I now know how easy it is for an employer to simply trash a resume, so I came up with a few tips to help make it easier to spot your mistakes or make your resume super awesome. Here goes.

Run a spellcheck, and correct all grammar

Nothing ruins a resume faster than bad spelling and hard to read sentences. If a person cannot even get their resume right, how can I trust them to communicate with clients, prepare reports, or even write a memo

Do not use narrative, stick to bullet points

The HR department of a company goes through a shit ton of resumes, constantly. They give it about a 30 second read, if even that, before they decide to actually read it. I know I don’t have the time or patience at this point to read paragraphs. Filter everything into neat bullet points and make everyone’s life easier.

Do not lie, it will bite you in the ass

There are a number of times one can get away with this, but a day will come when it will get you fired.

If you know someone who works where you are applying, ask what skills they look for

Life is all about networking. If you have connections, don’t be afraid to use them. Don’t let it hurt your pride. At the end of the day you are not getting hired because of your connections. You are getting hired because they think you can do the job.

Edit your resume for EVERY job. Apply less, but apply carefully.

I cannot stress this point enough. Like I said before, someone reading the resumes will only give it maybe 10 seconds before discarding it because nothing stands out. So many people arbitrarily will apply for a job, without really reading the job description. You have a chance here. Make your self seem like a perfect fit. Once again, don’t lie. But instead highlight and bring forward the skills that the job requires, which brings me to. Use bold text to help make it easier to spot keywords and skills. But don’t overdo it.

Read The damned job description, read it well

Understand what you are applying for. I have so many people who have no clue what they have applied for. This will help you tailor your resume. I called up one guy for an interview, and he had no clue what job I was referring to. Keep a list of jobs you have applied to handy. If you are lucky enough to have an employer call you you should know why. Remember, you need the job a lot more than the employer needs you.

Use a professional email address. Preferably simply your name.

Please do not write to me from hugs4u@bunnies.com or muscleman1982@steroidnation.com, I will be put off.

If possible, convert the resume to PDF format.

Some employers ask for both .doc and .pdf

Definitely put in any leadership or management positions you have held. People like to know you can delegate and supervise

Even if the job in question doesn’t ask for it. It shows growth potential.

Do not use acronyms unless they are mentioned in the job posting.

Put them in Parenthesis on the first mention, just as you would when writing a paper. Remember, HR reads the resume first and they have no in depth knowledge of the field you are specialised in.

READ the job post and reflect if your resume fits it, then make it fit or don’t apply

Had to repeat that one. It’s a biggie. Don’t apply to a job you know you are no match for. The hiring manager will see right through it.

Quantify everything.

If you improved sales for a company, say by how much if it is an impressive number. Or if you cut down production time or upped buffering speed. Whatever it is. Say how much.

After all is said and done, have at least three people read your resume.

Then read it again. Get by with a little help from your friends.

Finally, read as many resumes as possible.

I only have this knowledge because I have to hire.

If submitting online, try and submit during working hours

This one is definitely an insider tip. I am more likely to spend more time reading a resume I receive during work hours. This is because when I come in at 9:00 am all groggy and have 25 resumes to read. I am not in the mood. So i scan them, and am less likely to find anything that really stands out. If i receive one mid-day, after I’m done sifting through the lot, I will pay more attention to it.

  1. greyhanded
    March 31, 2010 at 6:58 pm | #1

    Awesome tips! love your writing style, keep it up :]

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