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Posts Tagged ‘Job Application’

August 22nd, 2012 by Juliana Weiss-Roessler   Posted in Career Advice, Resume Writing

How Long Should Your Resume Be?Generally, the answer is: as short as it can be. Some people belong to the school of thought that anything over a page is simply too long. It’s just one resume among a pile of dozens or hundreds more, so you need to make your case fast before they move on to the next one.

But here’s the thing: you also don’t want to leave off key experience because you’re trying to artificially cram everything onto one page. The key is to highlight the relevant experience, skills, education, and attributes, and for some, this may require two pages. In the case of senior executives with a lot of time in the workforce, your resume may even be longer. However, if you’re a recent college graduate or someone with just a few years of work experience, there’s no reason to have a resume over one page.

Some people incorrectly believe that having a longer resume will make them look more qualified or accomplished, but if you don’t actually have the experience, simply making it longer won’t fool anyone. In fact, it will just take them longer to get to the information that is relevant and may end up in you being passed over for the position.

What You Can Cut

So how do you know if your resume is as short as it can be? Look it over to see what’s extraneous. Each section and each item should be a selling point that gives the potential employer evidence that you are the right candidate. Here are a few common places where you may be able to cut down - or remove things altogether.

References

It’s no longer customary to include your references on your resume, so this is a great section to cut. If your employer is interested in contacting people for recommendations, you can provide them on a separate sheet. Similarly, you don’t need to include a line that says, “References available upon request.” The potential employer will assume this is the case.
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June 27th, 2012 by Juliana Weiss-Roessler   Posted in Job Search, Resume Writing

5 Mistakes on Your Resume that Are Hurting Your Job SearchFinding the job you want has always been a tough, time-consuming task, but these days just getting any job is a difficult prospect. One of the most important tools at your disposal in your hunt for that perfect position is your resume, but if that resume is just so-so, or - worse - riddled with mistakes, you could be making yourself stand out - in a bad way. Want to know some of the worst mistakes you can make on a resume? Read on!

Typos. The person reading your resume has probably gone through several dozen - if not more! - that day, and going through resumes probably isn’t the only job they have to do. Don’t make it any harder on them by turning in a resume with misspellings and grammatical errors. If anything, you’re giving them an easy reason to pass you over.

Poor Use of Subtitles. Lots of people like to use subtitles on their resume to separate it into sections. While this is a good idea and can help to avoid clutter (which we’ll get into shortly), too many people end up using generic terms that say nothing. So next time, instead of “Employment History,” try something like “Previous Teaching Positions” or “Past Administrative Work.” Not only will this clearly show your specific experience for the current position, it will show that you cared enough to tailor your resume for them.

Font selection. It’s great that Word and other programs offer us hundred of choices for the font style we want to use, but only a dozen or so are actually helpful for general use. It may seem boring, but sticking to the old standards is way better than, say, trying to stand out and ending up with something illegible in Curlz MT.
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May 21st, 2012 by Juliana Weiss-Roessler   Posted in Career Advice, Resume Writing

How to Deal with Unemployment on a ResumeFor a while there at the beginning of this year, it was starting to look like we were entering a new period of job growth that would drastically slash the unemployment rate and herald the rebirth of prosperity.

And then it stopped. Or at least it slowed down dramatically. The most recent jobs report showed that tens of thousands fewer jobs were created than expected, leaving unemployment hovering over 8 percent.

Doesn’t sound like good news, does it? But at least in one way, it can be beneficial for you if you currently find yourself hunting for a job. How? Because being unemployed isn’t as big of a stigma right now as it has been in the past.

Still, that doesn’t mean that you should call attention to gaps in your employment if you don’t have to. For small gaps in your job history, try only listing the years that you were employed at a company on your resume and omitting the months. Unless you’re expressly asked to do otherwise, it’s generally considered okay to do this, and it can be great if you’ve been unemployed for less than a year, because a prospective employer might not ever know there was a gap in your employment.

Unfortunately, recent reports show that unemployed Americans are searching for an average of 28 weeks before they finally find work, and you probably know lots of people who have been looking for far longer. What do you put on your resume if you have this kind of hole?
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March 13th, 2012 by Juliana Weiss-Roessler   Posted in Career Advice

How to Choose Job ReferencesYou did it. You slaved over your cover letter and resume to make sure they were perfect, and sure enough, it landed you a job interview. Because you’re the planning type, you read up on how to interview well and practiced ahead of time, which made the actual interview a breeze. You were comfortable, friendly, professional, intelligent. Anything the person asked, you had an answer for… until they mentioned references.

People still do that? You stall by telling them it’s no problem, and you’ll get a list over to them shortly, then shake hands and leave feeling stunned. How could you not have thought about this?

Your first instinct is probably to quickly toss together a list and send it out to make sure you don’t screw things up by waiting too long, but before you go crazy, stop for a second and think about it. The people you submit as references are a reflection of you, and could be the deciding factor on whether or not you get hired.

Choose someone who has worked with you. While the rules are obviously different for a person who is just starting out, generally speaking your references should be people who have worked with you before and can speak intelligently about your work habits, leadership skills, reliability, and ability to communicate and function in a team environment.
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November 2nd, 2011 by Juliana Weiss-Roessler   Posted in Interviewing, Recruiting & Hiring

4 Simple Tips for Hiring the Right CandidateInterviewing candidates can be a tough proposition. Oftentimes, multiple candidates will appear qualified and seem likable, but how do you know which one will really be the best employee for you? The right person could mean increased productivity, a better working environment, and less stress on you. On the other hand, bringing in the wrong person can become an expensive, time-consuming, headache-inducing mistake.

It’s impossible to truly know 100% who’s going to serve you best, but there are a number of things you can do to lessen the chances of hiring a dud.

Know your needs. When you bring someone in for an interview, you need to make sure you know what the job actually entails. This may seem painfully obvious, but you’d be surprised by how many interviewees complain about not getting an accurate description and overview of responsibilities on the job they’re interviewing for. Before the interview, collect information from others in the department about the duties, skills needed, and general work environment. Use this to craft your job description. Bonus points: having good, clear information in the job description will narrow your pool of applicants so that you’re more likely to be interviewing people who already fit what you need.
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