Resumes have changed. Not as structured as they use to be. No rights and fewer wrongs. No rule applies 100% of the time. Study resumes.
Highlight instead of detail. It’s not your life story. An employer is not your mom. They don’t care about your 7 th place soccer trophy in jr. high. A resume is like a first date. You show your best side and don’t show it all. Your resume has to market you the best it can. Most of you have already taken advertising or will take it. Consider it an ad for you. What makes an effective ad?
Simple, clean, big, bold picture.
It will progress with your career. Base resume-adapt for each position Personalized
Tyson gets 100 resumes a week. Beef Products Inc. gets 100 resumes a day. AQHJ up to 50 applications/job.
98% won’t have enough for two pages.
Test: Email it to a friend. Have them print it and make sure it looks ok printed.
You are trying to convince an employer that you are a stand-out. A cookie cutter template screams drone. Do you really want that?
Clean-no dirt, no coffee stains
Employers use side margins to make notes
Consider who is reading it. Example of my resume with script font. No more than 2 fonts on a resume.
informative — but not excessively descriptive In a Career Masters Institute study, use of bullets was the 2 nd highest ranked preference by employers. Paragraphs rather than bullet points was ranked highly as a factor that would inspire employers to discard a resume.
Chronological focuses on experience and lists job details. Employers prefer Most recent information first Show example
Based on skills instead of employment Functional highlights accomplishments from the beginning. For career change or gaps in employment. Employers question these as deceptive
Combined may include a shorter job description preceded by a short skills and accomplishments section.
firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com Give a number that will be answered-your cell. Make your voicemail professional. Clean up Facebook and Myspace.
HR personnel like objectives for routing but other than that are meaningless. Hard to write a good one. Don’t tell what you will gain as an employee. Tell why they will benefit from hiring you.
Profile emphasizes ability and accomplishments.
Take off high school and junior college. Expected date of degree completion. Age discrimination: Don’t provide date if you graduated more than 10 years ago. GPA more than 3.0 Can use a major GPA.
Athletic or academic scholarship
Do you list volunteer? Can summarize a list of non-related jobs. Decide whether employer or job title is most important. Focus on what you achieved instead of responsibilities. Quantify sales increase, employees supervised, customers served daily. Age discrimination: Only list past 15 years of experience. After you have some work experience, put this section above education.
Do not list responsibilities included or duties included. This is the equivalent of inserting “we cook” in front of the items listed on a menu. Test: read the first word in your sentence. See what image that conjures up of you as an employee.
Remember Watergate—it wasn’t the crime, it was the cover-up.
Employer is interested in skills and involvement. They view this as a testament to a well rounded person. Don’t need to know you are a pig wrestling champion. Don’t stand out for the wrong reason. Employers will question your judgment. Acronyms or words like assistant Don’t list religion, church affiliations, political affiliations, fraternity or sorority.
Besides activities, honors and leadership
96% of resumes have a grammatical error
Employers use keyword searchable databases to screen applicants. Many scan databases of third-party job posting and resume-posting boards on the Internet. More than 80% of resumes are now scanned for job-specific keywords.
Don’t put corrected resume in file name. Send a pdf because it won’t change drastically when sent electronically. Total compatible across computer systems.
Pick and choose references carefully.
Almost always separate Ditch line about references available upon request. Submit only when asked for.
It costs some extra dollars, but the recipient must sign for it. And out of curiosity, they may look to see what the certified letter is all about. You insure your letter reaches its destination and reaches its recipient.
What do you have to lose? Walk into the office
Use if sending to a publication that uses AP style. State abbreviations. Use two-letter postal abbreviation in full address. Use AP style abbreviations in all other locations. Do not spell out state when used with a city. Italicize publications. Don’t go crazy with capitalization. Only capitalize job titles when used before a name. Majors are tricky. Majors shouldn’t be capitalized but most people don’t know that. Seasons are not capitalized Numbers: spell out 1-9. Use numerals for 10 or more. Punctuation: colons introduce, dashes separate and hyphens join. Street address: AP tells us to abbreviate Ave., Blvd., and St. when part of a numbered address. That’s all.
If you are interested in a specific company, work to get an inside contact. Proactively try to meet someone from the company, or find a friend of a friend. People hire people they know. It’s comfortable. So do whatever it takes to make a contact.
Statistically, for every 100 resumes you send, you should get 10 interviews and one job offer. Don’t get your heart set on one job and stop applying for others. Everything happens for a reason
What is your group going to look for in an employee? What do you remember after 15 seconds. Rank your top resume and your bottom resume. What did you like or dislike about each resume?
Can replace with skills, profile or qualifications
See “Writing Career Objectives Ready Reference.” (E5)
Sample objective An entry-level position in the hospitality industry where a background in advertising and public relations would be needed.
Sample profile Highly motivated, strong work ethic; available as needed for training, travel and overtime.
Sample skills SPECIAL TRAINING • Specialized training in public relations, advertising, marketing, HTML and website design. • PC/Macintosh experience includes QuarkXPress, Photoshop, Illustrator, Acrobat, GoLive, InDesign and Pagemaker.
Sample qualifications • Fluent in Spanish • Oklahoma Elementary Education Certification • Available to relocate
Sample education EDUCATION Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK Bachelor of Science in Agriculture Expected: May 2012 Majors: Animal Science and Agricultural Communications Emphasis: Livestock Merchandising GPA: 3.70 • Financing 50% of education through part-time employment
Sample experience PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE Managing Editor, American Hereford Association, Kansas City, MO – Oct. 1996 to present • Direct, author and edit all magazine and commercial newspaper editorial content. • Assist in layout. • Write association news releases. • Edit and design association newsletters. • As of April 1, 1998, expanded and administered association communications. Associate Editor, American Hereford Association, Kansas City, MO – July to Oct. 1996 • Developed magazine editorial content, wrote feature stories and association news releases. Executive Secretary, Arkansas Beef Council, Little Rock, AR – May 1995 to June 1996 • Managed $1 million+ budget. • Oversaw and carried out beef council programs including the National Beef Cook-off. Director of Beef Promotion, Arkansas Cattlemen’s Association, Little Rock, AR • Implemented beef promotional activities. • Organized ACA events. • Created publicity for the nation’s largest state cattlemen’s association. COLLEGE INTERNSHIPS: State Fair of Texas Livestock Media Department and American Salers Association
Sample activities OSU ACTIVITIES AND HONORS: • Outstanding Animal Science Senior • Top Ten Senior, Division of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources • Livestock Judging Team, “Team of the Year” Member • Meat Judging Team, Reserve National Champion Team Member • Block and Bridle (4 years), Livestock Workshop Chairman • Ag Communicators of Tomorrow National Advertising Winner • Ag Communicators of Tomorrow National Feature Story — Fifth Place • OSU Ag Communicators of Tomorrow Feature Story Winner • President’s Leadership Council • OSU Alumni Association Outstanding Student Award Nominee • Who’s Who Among Students in American Universities and Colleges • Phi Kappa Phi, Golden Key, Alpha Zeta, Phi Eta Sigma Honor Societies
Sample activities INDUSTRY ACTIVITIES AND HONORS: • Chicago Mercantile Exchange Beef Industry Scholarship Winner • State 4-H Vice President • American Junior Hereford Association National Director (3 years), Second Vice President, Reporter • American Junior Hereford Association National Public Speaking Champion • Oklahoma Junior Hereford Association State Director and Officer (8 years)
Oklahoma Wheat Commission Director of Marketing/Communications
Director of marketing is assigned responsibilities involving the planning, promotion and monitoring of marketing programs that will benefit the sale of Oklahoma wheat. The director of marketing will perform activities related to opening and expanding markets for the wheat producers of Oklahoma and perform other related educational functions which will enhance the wheat industry in the state.