Seven Things to Know Before Writing Your First Resume

Seven Things to Know Before Writing Your First Resume

While it’s not as exciting as learning to drive, creating your first resume is a vital step in launching your career. The process may seem daunting. You have to put all of your best qualities on paper, make yourself look more attractive than the next person and completely sell yourself, all on one sheet of paper. “You have only a few seconds to snag the employer’s attention,” writes Seattle-based career coach Robin Ryan in Winning Resumes, (John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2003). “You must sell the employer within 15 seconds of looking at your resume, or you’ll lose the job.” Here are seven tips to help you catch an employer’s attention.

  1. Start with the basics.

It sounds obvious, but your resume must include your name, address, phone number and e-mail address. Be mindful of the address you include. College students, in particular, tend to move often, so include a permanent address, such as your parent’s address. Take care with your e-mail address too. “Make your user ID related to your name, not any nickname attributions,” Ryan says. If you want to appear professional to an employer, a user ID like “se#ylegs2000” will not work. If your personal e-mail address is not appropriate, set up a new account just for job searches.

  1. Include an objective and summary of skills.

These sections come right after your personal information and, for a first-time job seeker, should be concise.

For example: Objective: Editing Position Summary of Skills: Excellent writer proficient in copy editing and familiar with AP style. Extremely organized, with ample experience meeting deadlines and working in high-pressure situations.

Your “summary of skills” should highlight experiences and qualifications that the employer is seeking. Remember, Ryan says, “a resume is not about what you want. It’s about what you offer an employer.”

  1. Choose the right resume style.

There are three basic types of resumes: chronological, functional and combination. Chronological resumes focus on work experience, and list professional experience in order from most to least recent. Functional resumes concentrate more on skills. A combination style works well for first-time job seekers. You can point out professional experience, but also draw more attention to your skills, since your work experience is probably limited. Ryan suggests that first-time resume writers divide their resume into these categories: work experience, academic experience and community service/extracurricular experience.

  1. Brainstorm your experience and skills.

While you may be struggling to think of pertinent work experience, Ryan says that you have more than you realize. For example, if you have worked in a retail operation, your skills and qualifications include customer service skills, dependability, accountability, the ability to work as a part of a team and experience in managing money. Were you a full-time summer babysitter? This means you coordinated schedules, handled finances, and were extremely responsible. Many skills learned in part-time positions are quite relevant to the corporate world. Don’t underestimate the skills you have gained.

  1. Your academic and volunteer experience is relevant.

Don’t think that your schooling means nothing to an employer. Your computer skills will be particularly attractive and should be highlighted. You can also demonstrate your aptitude and strengths by project-specific examples of class work you have done. For example, if you were a journalism major in college, tell the employer about major articles you wrote and the legwork you did to complete those projects. Also consider your volunteer and extracurricular experience. If you held an officer position in a club or fraternity/sorority, were an athlete, volunteered or took a leadership role in any other extracurricular organization, you have valuable experience to list.

  1. Know the cardinal rules of resume writing.

First, use strong action verbs and leave out the word “I.” Words like created, developed, organized, motivated, and produced all say much more than “did.” Next, remember that your resume should be one page only — no exceptions. And, finally, never send a resume without proper proofreading.

  1. Never, ever lie.

So you were just two courses short of your college degree and think the company won’t figure out that you didn’t actually get it? Think again. If you lie on your resume, you will be caught. Don’t misrepresent your past — it will come back to haunt you.

Source – experience

How To Write Your Cv For An Internship Position

A CV is essential when applying for an internship.

It must clearly display your personal details, experience & skills.
Your CV should be appealing, easy to read and informative.

DO:

  1. Use professional & formal language.
  2. Include relevant personal information.
  3. Use a clear and basic format, but make it visually appealing.
  4. State your skills and experiences in detail.
  5. Point out your achievements, strengths and qualifications.
  6. Include your language skills.
  7. Show your relevant industry qualifications.
  8. Include reference contact details.
  9. Include work experience & previous internships: all previous experience should be presented chronologically.
  10. List your interests: think about which interests could be beneficial for the internship position which you are applying for. Don’t include too many or inappropriate ones, e.g. drinking on the weekends
  11. Appear professional: don’t use too many abbreviations & use a suitable email address (e.g “sexxychick92@hotmail.com” doesn’t make a good impression!)
  12. Always check your CV for spelling & grammar mistakes!

DON’T:

  1. Include too many details: Employers don’t need to be informed about each and every subject you chose in high school. Point out the ones that are relevant for your internship.
  2. Lie about your experiences: sooner or later an employer will find out and you will have to face the
    consequences.
  3. Use different fonts and colours.
  4. Include information which is too personal: religion and your marital status don’t belong on your CV.
  5. Include family member’s names and their jobs: the CV is supposed to be about YOU and not your brothers and sisters!
  6. Include inappropriate pictures: never use party pictures or half naked pictures! Facebook pictures belong on Facebook, not your CV.
  7. Include your primary school: this goes back too far and isn’t of any interest for the host company.
  8. Make it too long: Two pages is the maximum. OPTIONAL:
  9. Consider a portfolio or creative style when applying for an internship in the design field.
  10. Include a professional picture of yourself.
  11. Detail your computer skills: this doesn’t include your Facebook & Twitter skills, but rather industry relevant software.

Source – Internshipsdownunder

Ten Tips on How to Write the Perfect CV

The new year may provide the impetus to look for a new job, but is your CV good enough? A poll of 1,000 recruiters, by Adecco Retail, found it takes 34 seconds for an employer to decide whether a CV is worth further consideration. Cliches, lies and typos are all reasons people are not offered an interview. So how do you craft the perfect CV? Two experts give their tips.

Be relevant

“The key to a great CV is helping you stand out. You need to present yourself well, but you also need to ensure the experience you are communicating is relevant to the job,” says David D’Souza, the membership director of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, the professional HR body. “Look at the job description, and make sure that it’s clear why you’ll be able to deliver in that role.” Some employers still welcome a cover letter, but he advises contacting the hiring team to gauge what they would like.

Mind your language

Avoid tired expressions such as passionate, hardworking and team player. “It does depend on the type of job you do, but use descriptive words that mean something,” says Ruth Cornish, an HR expert who runs consultancy Amelore.com. She likes the word “accountable”, as well as “achieve” and “purpose”. “What was the purpose of your role? Why were you there?”

Pay attention to detail

“It’s hard to be positive about yourself because we tend to be quite humble, and it’s hard to read your CV as if you’re seeing it for the first time,” says D’Souza. Show it to someone you trust – ideally, someone who has worked with you – and ask for feedback.

Keep it short

“Be concise and don’t be afraid to delete experience if it’s not relevant to that role,” says D’Souza. “People talk about the traditional two-page limit, but it depends on the sector and the seniority you’re going for but, broadly speaking, if you can keep it to two pages, the recruiter will be delighted.”

Be accurate

Recruiters will judge you on mistakes, either in structure or in spelling or punctuation. “Use auto-correct, but also get other people to check for errors,” says D’Souza.

Make sure it reflects you

The look and feel – making it polished and professional – is important. “What font have you used?” says Cornish. “Are there different fonts, and bold here and there? No header? Think about the use of colour. You can really polish that document.”

Don’t be afraid to include personal information

Don’t ramble on about your pets or travel experiences, but if you have been on maternity leave, say it. “People are more aware of the fact that women and men take time out to have children,” says Cornish.

Don’t necessarily include a photo

D’Souza is not a fan of photos. “They can be problematic – it invites people to evaluate you on how you look rather than the substance of your work. There is some debate about whether people should be inventive on CVs. If you want to play it safe, a traditional CV, highlighting your key achievements that are relevant to the role is still the best way of securing a job, unless it’s a particularly creative sector.”

Include interesting hobbies

Team sports look good, “or something which show a degree of dedication, but avoid things that are ‘I go out and enjoy socialising’ because that doesn’t tell them anything more about you as a person,” says D’Souza.

Or maybe don’t do a CV at all

“I’ve seen video CVs, where you just send in a clip about yourself,” says Cornish. “That’s increasingly common for younger, creative people. Rather than saying you’re creative, prove it.” It does depend on the sector; some recruiters will love it, some will hate it. “Frankly, it’s so competitive and HR people put so many hurdles in, if you can circumvent it all by sending a video to a senior person in a company saying ‘this is me, can I come and work for you?’ and they say yes, that’s worth doing.”

Source – TheGuardian

Top Amazing Tips to Enhance Your LinkedIn Profile

For employers and jobseekers, LinkedIn is a valuable resource. It allows recruiters to find the right talent. And jobseekers to get the best positions at the right places.

However, for every jobseeker to connect with an excellent employer, there’re certain steps one needs to follow while creating a LinkedIn profile. Indeed, your LinkedIn profile is your first contact with a prospective recruiter.

Therefore, let’s look at some top and amazing tips that are useful to enhance your LinkedIn profile.

Amazing Tips to Enhance Your LinkedIn Profile

There’re countless ways to enhance your LinkedIn profile. In order to save you time and effort, you can utilize some of these top ones. Other enhancements can be done over a period of time. These top tips would help you hit the employment market running or develop your network swiftly.

Cover Picture

The cover picture of your LinkedIn profile speaks a lot about your personality. Personally, I use any aesthetic picture that catches my mind. However, for jobseekers, I would recommend using a cover picture that speaks or has some connection to your profession.

It could also be the logo of your present employer, though you might require permission to display it on a LinkedIn profile. Avoid cover pictures that show you with families and friends. If possible, you could use a picture that depicts you conducting a training session or speaking at some conference.

Profile Picture

Over the years, I’ve seen some of the most laughable profile pictures posted on LinkedIn by people. These include pictures wearing sunglasses, headgear, riding a bike or behind the wheel, with spouse or parents and so on.

Now remember, these kinds of pictures are suitable for social media websites but not LinkedIn. Because, LinkedIn can help you get fabulous jobs and develop a fantastic network of professionals around the world.

Instead, use a simple profile picture. It needn’t show you in formal attire. The vital elements of a profile picture are your facial features. Meaning, your face should be clearly visible. Such a headshot can be taken at home or, if necessary, at a studio by some professional. Recruiters aren’t exactly face-readers. But they do consider your expressions and looks to assess your personality.

Skills & Experience

Skills are different from experience. Skills indicate your proficiency at some work. Experience shows the number of years you’re in some profession. The two need not be correlated. Meaning, you could have developed fabulous skills despite shorter experience at work.

Therefore, it’s vital to separate the two while creating that killer LinkedIn profile that stands out, can help in job search and get more professionals to link with you.

Highlight every skill with projects. Indicate how your skills came handy to execute those projects. Also emphasize on out-of-the-box solutions you could use while working on these projects and the skills you could acquire as a result.

This doesn’t mean you should underplay your experience. Write a concise yet power packed summary of your experience that shows career growth and clearly speaks about your value to a past and present employer.

Skills and experience helps you to meet the recruiters need. This is an ideal way to reach out to employers.

Create Daily Posts

Posting content daily on your LinkedIn profile may sound a cumbersome task. Let me assure you: daily posts on LinkedIn works wonders for your profile. You needn’t have skills as content writer or journalist to create these posts or content or articles. Instead, you can merely post an interesting picture you found on some news website. However, ensure that you mention the source.

The best way however is to create a brief, 200 to 300 words post on current issues that concern a large number of people. The content could be anything newsworthy, your personal opinion about something or any latest development in the sector or industry where you work.

Creating posts related to your hobbies is also another way to get noticed. Just in case you’re unaware, your posts are visible to most LinkedIn users. When you write about some hobby, there’re excellent chances that some top professional that shares the same interest will link with you. You can always pitch such professionals as references for a job search.

Update, Update & Update

And finally, update your LinkedIn profile as regularly as you can. For example, if you’ve tried something new at work today and got success, create a post. When an out-of-the-box idea works, include that in your skills.

Another superb way to update your profile is by continuing education. There’re countless free courses from reputed American universities. Find any of these free courses in your area of work, complete them successfully and post the certificate on the LinkedIn profile.

In Conclusion

These top, amazing tips to enhance your LinkedIn profile would definitely prove very helpful if you exert the necessary extra efforts. Nowadays, LinkedIn is a network of choice for top recruiters to find top talent. Therefore, creating that job winning and attractive LinkedIn profile is necessary.

Source – Cvowl

3 Tips to Stand Out in the Job Market During COVID-19

With all of the uncertainty surrounding the Coronavirus pandemic, the job market is getting crowded, and it might keep getting more and more crowded. In this kind of environment, you absolutely need your resume to stand out. I recently spoke to Andrew Seaman, a writer on the #GetHired blog on LinkedIn, about how job seekers can make their resumes stand out. There are four basic tips I recommend you take as soon as possible to help get your resume in shape.

Start With a Strong, Position-Focused Career Snapshot

Still have a bland, generic career summary or career objective at the top of your resume? Get rid of it, and replace it with a career snapshot that is tailored for the position this resume is for. Use keywords and skills specific to the industry and the position, and focus the language on how your skill set matches the company’s needs. Use numbers and stats – things like how much you increased revenue. Make it brief, quantifiable, compelling, and smartly targeted.

Highlight How You Overcome Challenges

We are all dealing with a changed world right now, and companies are facing the need to pivot services, adapt working environments, and deal with the economic fallout of the Coronavirus pandemic. This means they want to know that their employees are resilient and can handle challenges. Think back on your career and how you’ve solved tough problems in the past, or how you’ve gotten creative in your thinking to find and implement a successful solution. Highlight some of these achievements on your resume to show potential employers that you have the resilience and problem-solving skills that they are looking for.

Use Call-Outs

Highlight important information and make your resume stand out visually with call-outs. What do I mean by call-outs? It could be a sidebar titled “Notable Achievements” or perhaps testimonial quotes from former clients, set off in boxes at the side or bottom of the resume. Use keywords in your call-outs, and tailor them to match the position you are applying to.

And the fourth tip isn’t really about your resume, but it’s important all the same:

Update & Improve Your LinkedIn Profile

What’s the first thing you do when you want information about something? You turn to the internet. Hiring managers and recruiters do the same thing. A polished and impressive LinkedIn profile will help get you noticed, potentially before they even read your full resume. Take the time to get your LinkedIn profile optimized and ready for primetime.

Source – Greatresumesfast

5 Quick-Fixes to Power-Up Your LinkedIn Profile

Whether you’re actively job-hunting or happily employed, these simple changes to your LinkedIn profile will boost your online presence and professional image. In less than 30 minutes you can improve your visibility, align your profile with your career trajectory, and polish what can otherwise look like unfinished business.

Try these 5 quick-fixes for immediate LinkedIn profile improvements that will benefit you in the long-term.

ONE: Customize your URL.

When working with resume and LinkedIn clients, one of the first things I look at is their LinkedIn URL. More often than not, people stick with the default URL given to them by LinkedIn – a jumbled and random mix of letters and numbers trailing after their name:

I urge everyone to customize their URL, a rewarding and simple quick-fix.
To do so: click “Me” and view your profile. From there, go to “Edit public profile & URL” — “Edit”. This will allow you to trim the mess at the end and give yourself a nice, neat URL that looks like this:

Why?

Once customized, your URL is a sleek marketing element that you can (and usually should) include with your contact information on your resume and cover letter. Prospective employers are going to look you up on LinkedIn so why not make it easy for them?

TWO: Add a Background Image

The option to upload a custom background image is a highly underutilized opportunity. Poke around and you’ll see that most people haven’t swapped out their teal constellation-esque default background image for something better.

However, a simple swap-out results in a dramatic improvement to your profile’s aesthetic.

Unless you’re part of a marketing-savvy company that’s made one for you, you’ll need to find or create your own unique background image. The easiest option is to upload your own photo or a neutral/abstract free stock photo. Take it a step further and customize your background image to include your contact info, credentials, and/or website!

Here are a couple of homespun background images:

Why?

A background image gives your profile a “polished” and completed look. As more and more of your peers and prospective employers utilize LinkedIn, why not take advantage of this subtle competitive edge? Your blank billboard awaits.

THREE: Utilize your Headline

Logically, many people use their headline to list their current position as LinkedIn suggests that you do. However, those 120 characters comprise what is arguably the most valuable real estate on your entire profile. Instead of simply listing your current job title, breakout your key roles and highlight your transferable skills.

Here are some examples:

Before: Susan Finch, Tech Lead at Arc Solutions

After: Susan Finch, Strategic Tech Leadership | Enterprise-wide Transformations | High-Impact Deliverables

Before: Clark Mizone, HR Manager at Morwell, Inc.

After: Clark Mizone, Building High-Performance Teams at Morwell, Inc.

Before: Sam Stone, Digital Marketing Manager at Parkside Digital

After: Sam Stone, Rogue Digital Marketing for Record-Breaking Profit & Growth

Why?

When you take advantage of the headline to showcase what you have to offer rather than just what you do, you establish and communicate your value while commanding attention in a sea of competition.

FOUR: Max Out Your Skills

Scroll way down on your LinkedIn profile and you’ll find the Skills & Endorsements section. Chances are you filled it out when you first created your account, and kudos if you’ve kept it up since then. This section is keyword gold. If you want to passively attract the right attention from recruiters and organizations, give your Skills & Endorsements section a little love.

You’re allowed to select up to 50 skills and I suggest you get as close to that number as possible. Don’t be afraid to select numerous similar skills (i.e. marketing, marketing management, digital marketing, strategic marketing, and so on). This will only power-up your visibility within your niche.

Why?

Once you’ve filled out your skills section, you’ve not only improved your search-ability, but you’ve also done the leg-work for colleagues and superiors who wish to endorse you. All they have to do is click the + next to your pre-selected skill and voila! Your endorsements become your social proof, and the snowball takes off.

FIVE: Follow the leader.

One final quick-fix to your LinkedIn profile is to align yourself with industry leaders, relevant groups and affiliate circles by following them.

When you click to follow specific people, companies, groups, and schools, their activity becomes visible in your feed. From there, you can like and comment on what they post, generating your own visibility in your connections’ feeds. It builds upon itself.

I follow resume writers, career coaches, and digital marketers and learn a lot – not only from the articles they share, but from observing how they structure their businesses and online presences.

What’s more, when you follow companies, groups and schools, LinkedIn creates an “Interests” section for you. This section visually portrays your intellectual curiosity and social engagement.

Source – Pillarresumes