Right Your Resume
With so much competition in the job market, it’s important to write a resume that stands out. And while your skills are invaluable, being aware of what recruiters are looking for when you apply to a certain position will help you immensely in your job search. If you’ve been out of the job market for a while (and even if you haven’t), staying on top of resume trends will keep you at the top of a hiring manager’s list.
Applicant Tracking Systems are Evolving
Sending out multiple resumes with little success? Your resume might be missing keywords relevant to your industry. With so many applications to sift through, most recruiters use a parser (a program which receives input and breaks it up into parts) to find what the computer deems the best resumes for a particular job. When looking to fill a position, hiring managers will sort through resumes by keyword, sometimes found in the job description, allowing the most qualified applicants to rise to the top of the pile. When you apply for jobs in the same field, take note of common words and phrases used in similar job postings. Using keywords will also help you tailor your resume of the job you’re applying to. Learn more about keywords here.
Using an infographic can be a great way to stand out, especially if you are in a creative field such as design, writing or fashion. Sites such as vizualize.me give your text resume a fun makeover that still allows you to present relevant skills in a professional way. Remember that Automated Tracking systems won’t read graphics, so you’ll need to adjust your resume when applying online. Keep your charts available when you know you’re sending them directly to a hiring manager, or hand them out at career fairs. There are also services such as Loft Resumes, which will help you create a visually appealing alternative to a standard Word document.
Using LinkedIn Wisely
It’s time to delete that “references available upon request” line at the end of your resume. Use LinkedIn to have former employers and coworkers promote your skills and even write you recommendations. This allows hiring managers to see quickly that your skills are valuable. Make sure you have a professional photo for your profile, and make sure all your information reflects your resume. LinkedIn can also be a great way to connect directly with hiring managers.
Tips for any Decade
- Always highlight accomplishments rather than make a straight list of former duties and responsibilities. Using action words keeps your resume targeted.
- Readability is key. Try reading your resume on a phone or tablet to see how the formatting transfers over. If hiring managers can’t read your resume on a mobile device, it’s possible you’re losing points.
- A powerful resume does not list every single accomplishment from the last 10 years. Throw out the fluff and stick to what’s most important. Your resume should be short, concise and to the point.
|Print article||This entry was posted by pyramid-admin on February 28, 2013 at 10:00 am, and is filed under Chronicles For Candidates, Human Resource, Right Your Resume. Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback from your own site.|
How do you handle employment gaps on your resume? Most people have a gap in their employment history at some point in time. The length of this time may vary and this is where the difficulty in addressing it lies. On top of this, there are numerous reasons for gaps, perhaps because of a company-wide layoff, maternity leave, health issues, family emergencies, going back to college? These are all valid reasons for employment gaps. But how do you explain this on your resume?
A short employment gap of a month or two is not of high concern to those with several years of experience. However, at first glance, a recruiter or hiring manager is likely to see a long employment gap and immediately raise a brow. A great analogy was stated on Careerealism, an employee is like a house that’s for sale. If it sits on the market for too long, buyers assume that something is wrong. When you decide to take six to nine months off, employers start to wonder the same thing about you.
If you left to pursue a degree, the “education” section of your resume will show this gap. You can also create a “volunteer” section if you took time off to pursue this route. For parenting or other family related reasons be sure to highlight the reasons in your cover letter. You don’t have to get too personal, but a brief explanation If you’re returning to the workforce after an extended absence unrelated to these topics, show how you’ve kept up-to-date with changes in your industry. Don’t just let the cover letter explain it all. That’s like leaving your job search to chance. On your resume showcase how you have remained up to date with your skills.
If asked about the gap during a job interview, use the same brief explanation indicated in your cover letter. You want to convey that the situation is over and you are focused on rejoining the workforce.
For more advice on how to explain employment gaps, click here.
|Print article||This entry was posted by pyramid-admin on January 28, 2013 at 10:06 am, and is filed under Right Your Resume. Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback from your own site.|
It’s that time again; time to update your resume. Whether you are someone who is continuously maintaining your resume or someone who updates only when they are looking to leave a job, this process is time consuming. After all, your resume is your first impression with an employer so it should accurately reflect your skills and experiences. Unfortunately, most job applicants create a generic resume that fails to make hiring managers notice them.
According to a study researched earlier this year by TheLadders, recruiters spend an average of “six seconds before they make the initial ‘fit or no fit’ decision” on candidates. That being said, here are some general guidelines to keep in mind.
- An objective statement – the time for these have come and gone.
- Personal interests and/or hobbies – eave this casual interview conversation.
- Basic skills – everyone can type, focus on specialized skills in your field such as Adobe Creative Suite or Quickbooks.
- Your picture – this simply looks unprofessional.
- Every prior job you’ve held – only put prior jobs that relate to the position you are applying for.
Nowadays, you not only have to catch the eye of the hiring manager, but you have to have key words for applicant tracking systems (ATS). Did you know, 72% of resumes are never seen by human eyes? Unfortunately, there is no way of knowing if a company uses one or not. The best way to approach this problem is tailor your resume just like you would for a hiring manager.
- Use language from the job description
- Choose standard, readable fonts
- Focus on your skills section
- Don’t use special characters
- Get rid of irrelevant information
You have to read through your resume, delete all of the clutter and focus on the important key words. Once this has been ironed out, proofreading can’t be stressed enough. Look for not only spelling areas, but grammar mistakes and correct capitalization. Read it silently, read it out loud, take a break and read it again. In the end, do not rely solely on your eyes. Send your resume over to a friend to review, too.
|Print article||This entry was posted by pyramid-admin on December 10, 2012 at 3:37 pm, and is filed under Right Your Resume. Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback from your own site.|
As the holidays approach many people wonder if they should list seasonal and temporary work on their resume. Whether you are a college student, recent graduate or recently unemployed, this question pertains to you. It is not uncommon to take on temporary, freelance and/or seasonal work until you find a job in your field or while pursuing your degree. In fact, it’s a great way to gain work experience, earn some extra cash and close gaps in employment. The question then becomes whether or not this experience should be added to your resume.
Keep in mind that you do not list every job you’ve ever held. Going along with this notion, when you list a number of jobs held in a short period of time you risk looking like a job hopper and a company may fear you may not stick around for them either. On the other side of things, you don’t want large gaps of time on your resume.
Below are some of the best practices for including (or not including) short-term jobs according to a Simply Hired Blog:
Tell the truth – When you send in an application to a hiring company, it should be the complete truth. A simple background check would show inconsistencies, and you could easily lose your consideration for a great job.
Include years only – A simple change from a month and year (March 2010) date format to year-only (2010) can be an easy way to make short-term jobs less noticeable. This is generally acceptable if you’ve held the position for six or more months.
Leave it off – If you held a position for less than six months, it’s not relevant to the positions that you’re applying for, or you didn’t stay at the job long enough to make any notable contributions, you can leave it off your resume.
Note contract and temp work – If short-term jobs were meant to only last a few months, such as contract work, temporary jobs, freelance work, or even seasonal jobs, you should definitely include them on your resume. Just make a note that it was a contract position (or whatever the case) right after the dates held.
Include the word “seasonal” or “temporary” in the title when writing about seasonal work on a resume. This will help clear up any of the above issues and show you are not flakey. Seasonal jobs often require a considerable amount of flexibility and strong work ethic. Highlight these traits in your resume. Here is an excellent example of how to highlight your seasonal experience if you are still in school.
When in doubt follow this general rule of thumb: your resume is where you showcase your most relevant work experience to prove you have the experience required for roles that you are interested. If your resume is loaded with resume experience, go without the seasonal work. You can always explain this in the interview.
|Print article||This entry was posted by pyramid-admin on October 29, 2012 at 9:44 am, and is filed under Right Your Resume. Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback from your own site.|
When looking for a new position, job seekers sometimes tend to put less emphasis on the resume and more into networking and the actual act of job hunting. You can not underestimate the importance of writing a good resume. On that note, there are a few back to basics I’d like to discuss: contact information, grammar, and critical information.
I can not stress enough how important it is to put your contact information on your resume. Time and time again I’ve come across resumes without contact information or with inappropriate email addresses. If you do not have an email address with your name in it then I suggest you look into getting one. It simply looks more professional. I know what you’re thinking; I e-mailed my resume so the hiring manager obviously has the e-mail address. This is not necessarily the case though, especially with applicant tracking systems (ATS). Even if an ATS isn’t in place, more often than not, a hiring manager saves the resume and deletes the email. With regards to a phone number, best practice is to write your cell phone number. Be cautious of putting your office number and keep in mind moving if you put your home number.
I know that many people don’t like the idea of giving out their home address. However, on the other end of the spectrum, the employer needs to know where you are located because they may not be interested in relocating a candidate or knowledge of the local community may be a qualification for the position. So, at a minimum, include you city and state.
We’ve all made writing mistakes. Most of the time our good friend, spell check, will catch us when we make a blunder. But unfortunately, as we all know, this is not always so. Hiring managers will generally overlook a couple of typos that anyone could fail to see (we’re human, right?). Then there are those grammar mistakes that simply can not be overlooked. Here are five mistakes you can’t afford to make and that will take you back to your school days in English class:
- Contractions vs. Possessive Pronouns
- Apostrophe Use
- Subject-Verb Agreement
It is very common for job seekers to state responsibilities and skills and leave it at that. The hiring manager wants to know what resulted from these responsibilities and how you use your skills to achieve success. With the addition of critical information about results, you can make a seemingly unimportant task important.
At the end of the day resumes are about you, an individual. When writing a resume you are inclined to ramble and highlight points that you believe are important. A company doesn’t care about that stuff; a company only cares about how you will fit in with their culture and what you can bring to the table.
|Print article||This entry was posted by pyramid-admin on October 12, 2012 at 10:47 am, and is filed under Right Your Resume. Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback from your own site.|
Are you submitting your resume for countless positions only to receive few or no call backs? Are you having trouble moving past the preliminary interviews? If you are answering yes to either of these questions you need to sit back and re-evaluate your resume. You must ask yourself if you are you applying for jobs that you’re qualified for to find the root of the problem. If you answer yes, then are you customizing your resume each time you apply for jobs?
50 percent of people applying for a given job simply aren’t qualified. Most companies use talent-management software to screen resumes, weeding out up to 50 percent of applicants before a human even looks at a resume or cover letter providing another obstacle a resume must overcome.
Here are 5 reasons you’re not hearing back after applying for a job.
- You really aren’t qualified.
- You haven’t keyword-optimized your resume or application.
- Your resume isn’t formatted properly.
- Your resume is substantially different from your online profile.
- The company received 500 resumes for one job posting, and yours was 499th in.
So how do you rise up against these challenges and stand out? First, follow the above the above suggestions. Next, be sure you are networking and reach out to people you know at a company. Personal referrals go a long way. You should always research and follow companies of interest through social media. This way you can learn about the most recent job openings and even sometimes learn when they are filled. Lastly, asking others to review your resume can prove to be a huge help. You never know what feedback you may receive that you might have overlooked.
|Print article||This entry was posted by pyramid-admin on August 27, 2012 at 9:47 am, and is filed under Right Your Resume. Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback from your own site.|
Your resume is a reflection of who you are and what you write on your resume matters. You want to be sure to highlight your qualifications, accomplishments, education and professional effectively without losing yourself or over exaggerating.
80% of all resumes are misleading. This is an alarmingly high rate and can only hurt you if you’re caught in an unnecessary embellishment. In addition to embarrassment you should keep your resume honest for the sake of background employment checks. More and more companies issue background checks as part of their hiring process. Inaccuracies caught by a background check company can cost you your potential new job. It is a reflection of your character.
Here are some guidelines to follow when writing your resume.
- List your exact title under professional experience.
- When it doubt, do not guess.
- Do not cover up your employment gap.
- Be honest about your accomplishments.
- Revise your resume until you feel comfortable that all the information included is truthful and will not raise any red flags.
If you make it past these steps and begin a job a dishonest resume can still come back to haunt you, especially with regards to technical or specialized skills. Simply having experience with a software program doesn’t mean your proficient in it, and claiming to be so could cause employers to have different expectations of your skills.
Just remember to have confidence in the resume you have and be honest and truthful.
|Print article||This entry was posted by pyramid-admin on August 24, 2012 at 11:23 am, and is filed under Right Your Resume. Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback from your own site.|
Your resume is typically the first thing an employer or recruiter reviews so it is not surprising that preparing your resume can be one of the most important steps in the job application process. Your resume is also the way you market yourself. Paying attention to detail will help send the clear message as to why you are worth talking to you about the job.
There are several commonly made resume mistakes all job seekers should avoid.
- Grammar and spelling errors
- Not tailoring a resume for each job
- Including too many personal details and “fluff”
- Poor design or layout
Granted, there are tools to catch basic errors such as punctuation and spelling, but there aren’t any systems in place for other common errors.
Here are 4 major errors to keep a cautious eye on.
- Subjective text – Don’t tell recruiters how you see yourself. Prove it. List facts stating quantifiable accomplishments.
- Too much information - Information overload to a recruiter is not a way to stand out. Simplify the resume to list only the key skills you want to leverage
- Week top-fold - The first third of our resume is known as the “top-fold” – it’s where the eye goes when someone sees your resume for the first time. Text-intensive top-folds that aren’t well-formatted and don’t present key skill sets lose the reader’s attention.
- Fancy Fonts – Fancy (curly fonts) are harder to read. You are actually making it harder for the hiring manager to absorb your resume. Fancy design or layout done tastefully is a plus, but try to avoid fancy fonts.
One way to avoid these mistakes is to create multiple resumes. It allows you to refrain from putting on too much clutter and the hiring manager can see a clear purpose. The “one size fits all” mantra for resumes does not pay off. You need to focus only on one specialization, because it keeps the resume simple, but effective.
|Print article||This entry was posted by pyramid-admin on July 30, 2012 at 11:01 am, and is filed under Right Your Resume. Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback from your own site.|
Having an effective resume and cover letter is essential when applying to jobs. But how do you know if what you’re submitting is successfully targeting the employer? In order to ensure you are doing so you should research the employer’s goals for the position you want.
Below are different methods to researching an employer aside from the company’s website and Google search engine.
- Social media such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter
- Zoominfo - free resource for acquiring company information
- Google Alerts – great way to keep up with your target companies without actively searching for information
- Forbes Lists – on the Lists page is a category along the right-hand side panel labeled Companies, and under that title are lists that could help you target companies
- Fortune 500 List – CNN Money and Fortune magazine have teamed up to present an annual ranking of America’s largest companies
- Google Finance – offers up-to-the-minute financial news, company summaries, key statistics, market summaries and quotes
For more information on these services, click here.
Your resume should also be compatible with a second audience – the Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS). These systems search your resume for job relevant keywords and phrases.
Here are a few guidelines to building a scanner friendly resume:
- Develop a list of relevant keywords
- Use a standard heading
- Build a keyword rich summary
- Use standard fonts
- Format properly
Your resume is what separates you from everyone else. Make sure to take all the necessary steps to ensure you stand out to the employer’s hiring managers and ATS.
|Print article||This entry was posted by pyramid-admin on July 5, 2012 at 10:54 am, and is filed under Right Your Resume. Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback from your own site.|
We love discovering new sites that encourage job seekers to be creative while giving options to publicize their search and brag about their experiences.
Thank you, Eugene Woo, for creating Vizualize.me. It reminds us of About.me except there are more fields that elaborate on your past work experience and education. The main difference is Vizualize.me focuses on you and your job search instead of just you.
When you first register with the site there is an option to sign in with LinkedIn, which parses all experience listed on your LI profile onto your new Vizualize.me page. You have the freedom to edit content, color, and layout.
Here are some fun options to play around with; all of which can be parsed automatically upon signing in with LinkedIn:
- Awards & Honors
- Six themes and layouts to choose from
- Color for layout, theme, and content
One of the features we love most about the site is the option to interact and share your Visualize.me page. There is a “Share” option on the top right corner with option to embed a button on your blog or website. There are also various social media buttons where you can blast out your new creative and eye grabbing professional profile.
Good luck with your Vizualize.me page. We hope to see you on their soon!
|Print article||This entry was posted by pyramid-admin on June 7, 2012 at 5:00 pm, and is filed under Mentionings, Right Your Resume, SINC - Source, Interact, Network, Connect, Sites For Seekers, Social Media. Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback from your own site.|