From Job Description to Job Offer - A Hiring Manager's Journey
From Job Description to Job Offer
A Hiring Manager's Journey
Information architect, Epic Games
Instructor, Duke Technical Writing Program
Leader, STC Carolina
My recent hiring experience
Writing a good job description
Creating and evaluating writing tests
Tracking applicants outside the ATS
Communicating with applicants
Your resume as a work sample
Tips for standing out (and what to avoid)
Selling yourself – beyond the resume
Leveraging your network & LinkedIn while job searching
AVERAGE # OF RESUMES
RECEIVED PER JOB OPENING
AVERAGE TIME A RECRUITER
LOOKS A RESUME
OF APPLICANTS ARE UNQUALIFIED
people will see a job post
resumes will be seen by the hiring manager;
75 will be screened out
will complete the application process
invited to interview
will be offered the job
Last fall I searched for a junior- to mid-level technical
writer to write IT Support documentation.
The content of this presentation is largely drawn from
this effort but also includes experiences from hiring
previous jobs and running a resume writing
MY RECENT SEARCH
INCLUDED A COVER LETTER
RESUMES HAD GENERIC FILE NAME
Write, approve, post.
Review applications as they
Video/phone call ~30 min
Rewrite & update existing
2 interviews with 2-3 people
Salary negotiation & etc.
List the skills /
WRITING A GOOD
Think about what you
really need (and not
just what you want).
Provide more than
duties in the
description. Add a day
in the life, first 90 days,
This helps applicants
respond to the ad with
the skills that match
what you need the
Your company has one;
please share it, and
avoid even more
HR won't let you?
Advocate for a policy
Want an example? https://bit.ly/2Hw9SOm
Once you have narrowed down what you really need,
screening candidates is a lot easier.
Follow all instructions?
Submit all required documents? (Cover letter,
resume, writing sample and/or link to portfolio)
Clearly tailor their materials to my position?
List the technology/hard skills from the job ad?
Demonstrate successful collaborative projects?
Express genuine interest in the position/company?
Volunteer/stay active within the TC community?
Did the candidate...?
MY SCREENING CHECKLISTWHAT I NEEDED
Is curious and excited about
Writes well and learns quickly.
Garners respect from their SMEs
Shows interest in growing in the
industry and with the company.
A technical writer who...
Create a basic rubric.
Have multiple evaluators.
Be more lenient with the less
Don't discount style
preferences that aren't
clearly spelled out in your
Writing tests are a good way
to determine if an applicant
can analyze an audience,
research a topic, write clearly,
and format/present a piece
according to your standards.
Use real, existing content.
Repect the candidate's time:
<1 hour to complete.
Allow several days for a
Give guidelines for timing and
delivery (PDF, Word, etc.).
Provide your style guide.
Resume: file name & type, # of pages, attachment
Cover letter provided (yes/no)
Location (If local, specific area; if not, near Epic Studio?)
Last Job Title
Technical Writing Experience (yes/no)
IT Support Experience (yes/no)
Game Development Experience or Interest
Review status (Screen, Rejected, Interview, Hire)
Reason for rejection
THINGS I TRACKED
Do I need to provide a reason for rejecting an applicant?
Epic Career Site
Epic LinkedIn Page
Does not meet qualificaitons
Qualified but position is not a fit
Other candidates better qualified
APPLIED VIA REJECTION REASON
Managers: Respect candidates' time
Applicants: Respect the HM's time and
FOLLOW THE RULES
Mangers: Follow any policies from HR.
Communicate via approved channels.
Applicants: Don't call or email if
specifically asked not to.
Seek feedback and improve.
Your resume isn't perfect.
Your hiring practices aren't perfect.
Know better, do better.
Managers: Be truthful. Don't hedge
against difficult questions.
Applicants: Don't lie on your resume.
Don't ask for informational interviews
when what you really want is a job.
ALWAYS THE FIRST STEP
Your current company
Who is a resume for?
Has higher than
DON'T MAKE ME THINK
Don't make hiring managers search for
the skills and experience they're
specifically looking for.
(Use the job ad as a guide.)
SHOWCASE YOUR SKILLS
Clear, concise, consistent
Good document design
Use this opportunity to showcase your
writing and technology skills:
DESIGN FOR MACHINES,
WRITE FOR HUMANS
Resumes are for hiring managers, but
ensure the design is machine-friendly.
Write your cover letter from one human to
TAILOR, TAILOR, TAILOR
Tailor your resume and cover letter for
each (or extremely similar) jobs.
Not doing this is the quickest way to land
in the rejection pile.
Use heading & text styles.
Save as: FirstLast_Resume_Position
Provide contact info copiously.
Link to LinkedIn/portfolio.
Tell the story you intended to tell.
Ensure your files are ATS-friendly.
Shotgun your resume.
Use a basic template.
List every job you ever had.
Have any errors.
Use more than 2 fonts.
STAND OUT FROM THE CROWD - THE RIGHT WAY
WRITE A GOOD COVER LETTER
Use your cover letter to showcase your writing and other skills.
Convey excitement for the job and the company.
HAVE A PORTFOLIO / WEBSITE
Create a personal website with work samples. Link to
it from your resume and LinkedIn profile.
Be someone who is recommended by your network by
having a skill you are known for. A warm lead gets you
MUCH farther than the job application black hole.
Selling Yourself Beyond the Resume
LINKEDIN IS NOT A RESUME
Your profile should not be a copy-paste of your resume. Your profile is the
landing page of your professional life. Recruiters will use it narrow their search,
and hiring managers will search to find out more about you.
FOCUS ON SEO
Your profile should be keyword-rich using terms
found in target jobs.
Like, comment, share, post. Join groups. Don't engage
only when job searching. Shoot for 1-2 times/week.
Using LinkedIn During a Job Search
WORK YOUR NETWORK
Ask for recommendations, leads, introductions,
and advice. If you help others, others will help you.HTTPS://ALSTNTEC.COM/10-TIPS-BUILDING-