Resume Writing and Online Job Search Presented by Trent Rose, Tech Trainer Salina Public Library The Sources Before we begin I would like to mention my sources. Nancy Jo Leachman, Librarian, who has spent countless hours reviewing resumes. Quintcareers.com, an online job board which provides informative advice for job seekers. Monster.com, one of the most popular online job boards Adams Cover Letter Almanac Can’t Miss Resumes Career Interest Many job seekers find they are unable to find similar job opportunities because of market and industry conditions or geography limitations. There are a number of free online career interest and aptitude tests. These sites are often ad supported which can bring up privacy issues. NEVER PROVIDE SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBERS, DATE OF BIRTH, or EVEN HOME TELEPHONE. Community colleges also offer in-depth Career Interest Sites: CareerFitter offers a quick and free exam which can help job seekers identify interest areas: http://www.careerfitter.com/free_test/car eerbuilder/index.htm Career Interest Sites Quest Career Services provides a detailed exam which will provide a number of potential careers. http://www.questcareer.com/career_asses sment_resources.html Career Aptitude Sites LiveCareer: A free career aptitude test. livecareer.com The Hard Part First Remain professional and friendly at all times during your job search. It is of key importance to be courteous to receptionists and other gatekeepers which assist department and human resources managers. Maintain your network at all times during and after a job search. Maintain a professional contact with at least one person from your former employer. Cold Calling According to Quint Careers, four-fifths of the current job market is closed. This doesn’t mean there are no jobs to apply for, but job seekers will need to be more creative and look harder to find them. There are a number of methods for doing this, such as cold calling. Cold calling is the process of making contact with a potential employer in person or by mail even though they have not advertised for help. Cold Calling Before cold calling it is important to gather as much information as possible about an employer. Find out what products the company makes Services it provides Ranking within the industry How long it has been in business Recent projects Finding Out About a Company Check the company’s website for information first. Hoovers.com provides information about businesses across the country. Although only a certain amount of information is free, it will provide enough information to be helpful. Yahoo Finance provides additional information about publicly traded companies. Applying Online This can be the most difficult area of any job search. It is important to keep in mind job boards like Monster.com primarily appeal to staffing agencies acting as an intermediary between you and an employer. Online job searching can be as effective as the newspaper classifieds, however, privacy can become an issue. Tips for Applying Online Do not provide your Social Security Number or date of birth. You may want to create a separate e-mail from your primary one, as an attempt to ward off spam. Make sure your e-mail address conveys a business like image. Beyond traditional background checks employers may check the Internet for information about an applicant. Avoid distasteful MySpace or other online profiles. Tips for Applying Online If an employer contacts you by e-mail print off the message and save it. An e-mail message is usually a first point of contact, but it is advisable to call the interviewer to schedule a time. Write down information from phone messages. Find out the relationship of the interviewer to the company and the terms of employment. Interviews from online job boards often take place in informal places like Coffee houses. Creating Online Resumes It is important to use formatting conservatively in online resumes to make the documents look the best. Online resumes are generally used for job boards like Monster.com. What looks good on paper may not appear the same online. Online resumes should avoid centering and bullets. Use descriptive words rather than active words found in paper resumes. Creating Online Resumes/Words It is important to use words that the employer will be searching for. For example instead of saying managed a restaurant crew of 20, try restaurant manager, manager, or General Manager. Instead of bakery line worker, try baker Take a survey of the ads for jobs you want look at what skills they want and the words they use. Apply these keywords to your resume. Keyword Inconsistency It is a generally accepted standard for online resumes to use different keywords to describe the same thing. In your cover letter you might use A.A. degree, then use Associate degree in your resume References ALWAYS INCLUDE EMPLOYMENT REFERENCES when applying to a specific employer. Generally references are not included in resumes on online job boards. Tools for Resume Creation There are a number of tools you can use for creating a resume. Microsoft Office Word 00-07, available at many libraries. Alternatively, most computers come with Microsoft Works. A free and comprehensive office suite is available at OpenOffice.org Keep in mind most of these tools have built in resume templates. Sample Online Resume http://www.wa.gov/esd/guides/resume/po st/post_sample.htm Notice the lack of bullets, use asterisks instead The entire resume is left justified, nothing is centered. Privacy experts suggest hiding your name and mailing address when posting to online job boards. Writing a Hard Copy Resume Avoid posting hobbies or other interests unless they directly relate to the job. Items which are found on a resume Name, address, telephone, fax, and email Education/vocational training On the job training Work experience Skills summary (try to apply your skills to the job you are applying for Major accomplishments Writing Hard Copy Resumes Military experience Add certifications and licensure Awards (academic, on the job recognition, etc.) Resume Types There are two types of resumes which include chronological and functional. The most current work experience is presented first and works in reverse. The last five to seven years of work experience is generally enough. Chronological resumes are not for people who have taken time out of the workforce or who have more diverse work backgrounds. Resume Types Continued Functional resumes allow candidates to flaunt the skills of their choice and the experiences of which they are the proudest. This format gives candidates the luxury of combining a lifelong dedication to community service into their for- profit achievements when switching career tracks. And, as an added bonus, they work well for candidates who want the world to forget about their brief professional dalliance with interpretive dance. Functional Resume Example http://www.1st-writer.com/ExampleResume1.pdf Positives: Considerable detail Provides an ample amount of experience Negatives: Wordy—major accomplishments could be broken out with bullets. Chronological Resume for Retail Functional Resume http://jobsearch.about.com/library/sampl es/blresumefunctional.htm Notice the work experience diversity Pros: Well crafted resume which is interesting to look at. Cons: Lacks any real leadership skills Recent High School Graduate Resume http://www.1st- writer.com/Jane%20Doe%20HS%20Resu me.pdf Recent College Graduate http://www.1st- writer.com/Jane%20Doe%20Resume.pdf Helpful Resume Resources 1st Writer: provides a comprehensive resource about creating resumes from templates and scratch. http://www.1st-writer.com/free_resume_examples.htm About.com Job Search Resources: this area of the site provides resume writing hints and other helpful job seeker information. http://jobsearch.about.com/ Resume Hints Ask a friend or family member to review your resume for consistency and effectiveness. Feel free to email me: firstname.lastname@example.org Make sure you replace all information which is part of a resume template. Use SPELL CHECK Watch for formatting consistency The format painter in word processing applications can help. One or two pages should be the MAXIMUM SIZE for most resumes. Cover Letter Writing No spelling or typing errors. Not even one. Address it to the person who can hire you. Resumes sent to the personnel department have a tougher time of it. If you can find out (through networking and researching) exactly who is making the hiring decision, address the letter to that person. Be sure the name is spelled correctly and the title is correct. A touch of formality is good too: address the person as "Mr.," "Ms.," "Mrs.," "Miss," "Dr.," or "Professor." (Yes, life is complicated.) Write it in your own words so that it sounds like you-- not like something out of a book. (Electra gets in trouble with libraries when she says things like this.) Employers are looking for knowledge, enthusiasm, focus. Cover Letter Writing Being "natural" makes many people nervous. And then even more nervous because they are trying to avoid spelling errors and grammatical mistakes. If you need a little help with grammar (do they still teach grammar?)--check out the classic work on simple writing, Strunk & White's Elements of Style, published in 1918 and now online. A good place to begin is "Chapter 5: Words and Expressions Commonly Misused." Show that you know something about the company and the industry. This is where your research comes in. Don't go overboard--just make it clear that you didn't pick this company out of the phone book. You know who they are, what they do and you have chosen them! Use terms and phrases that are meaningful to the employer. (This is where your industry research and networking come in.) If you are applying for an advertised position, use the requirements in the ad and put them in BOLD type. For example: the ad says-- "2 years' experience processing magnetic media (cartridge, tape, disc); interface with benefit plan design, contracts and claims; and business background with strong analytical & technical skills--dBase, Excel, R&R, SQL." Cover Letter Samples http://jobstar.org/tools/resume/clet-ex1.php Online Job Boards There are a variety of online job boards available. The job boards can be national, state, regional, local, etc. Make note of the address, account information, and date a resume was posted to a job board. Note whether your resume status is private or public Experts advise job seekers to post their resume to no more than 1-3 job sites. Local Job Boards http://www.hayshasjobs.com/ https://www.kansasworks.com/ada/ http://www.westernksjobs.com/ http://www.salina.com/www/jobs/index.html National Job Boards www.Monster.com: a national job board which features a resume builder. The site has come under fire for not protecting users privacy. www.simplyhired.com: another national job board with more opportunities nearby. This site is rated as one of the best job resources by US News and World Report http://www.collegerecruiter.com/: a site which presents job opportunities for recent graduates.
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