3 Critical Details You May Be Forgetting To Include In Your Resume

iStockphoto.com (SIphotography)

iStockphoto.com (SIphotography)

 

A resume is a marketing brochure, and like any brochure it exists to sell a product. Namely, you.

While brevity is key to the successful resume (most shouldn't exceed 1 or 2 pages), it's absolutely essential that you also clearly demonstrate your potential value to an employer in a succinct manner. A fuller picture of who you are can help you snag an interview.

Here are 3 Critical Details You May Be Forgetting To Include In Your Resume!

1. ACCOMPLISHMENTS. You'd be surprised how many people's resumes are little more than a transcript of their job description, just a detailed description of day-to-day duties with no mention of their wins. Don't be modest – highlight the initiatives you've led, the process improvements you've developed, the sales you've generated, and the money you've saved! Clearly articulated – and preferably, quantifiable – accomplishments demonstrate that you won't just take up space, you'll elevate the potential employer's overall performance.

2. CONTEXT. Responsibilities and accomplishments listed on a resume can carry greater impact if they provide a bit of details into the circumstances. And you'd be surprised how much important detail you can fit on one or two lines if they're tightly written. Take a look at the following examples and decide for yourself – which ones are just bullets, and which ones provide critical insights that really sell the job seeker?

• Generated $300K in region-wide sales. (OR)
• Generated $300K in region-wide sales as #1 sales representative in company, growing business through aggressive lead generation and new account development.

• Installed Windows 10 onto all of the company's desktop computers. (OR)
• Installed Windows 10 onto all of the company's desktop computers, leading project from initial planning through final sign-off.

• Achieved high levels of customer satisfaction on service calls. (OR)
• Achieved high levels of customer satisfaction on service calls, consistently earning 4 and 5 ratings (out of 5) on surveys through focus on culture of customer service and accountability.

•Oversaw 350-person layoff during business downturn. (OR)
•Oversaw 350-person layoff during business downturn. Led executive team in workforce analysis to identify efficiencies, retain key talent, and drive compliance with regulations.

3. PEOPLE DEVELOPMENT. If you're a manager at any level, an important skill is the ability to develop your staff. Do you have people you've promoted to leadership roles? How did you get them there? Did you engage your employees in career planning? An employer is going to want to know how you help your team improve and grow, since organizations need the continuity and competitiveness that a supply of leadership provides. Detail your people-oriented wins.


Scott Singer is the President and Founder of Insider Career Strategies Resume Writing & Career Coaching, a firm dedicated to guiding job seekers and companies through the job search and hiring process. Insider Career Strategies provides resume writing, LinkedIn profile development, and career coaching services, including a free resume review. You can email Scott Singer at scott.singer@insidercs.com, or via the website, www.insidercs.com.

3 Important Ways Recruiters Use LinkedIn

iStockphoto.com (Jirsak)

iStockphoto.com (Jirsak)

 

Did you know LinkedIn is a major recruiting tool?

There are more than 467 million user accounts in LinkedIn, all of which are professionally oriented; in other words, one in every 17 people on planet earth has a LinkedIn account, making the system fertile ground for recruiters to find potential candidates for open jobs.

If you'd like to get noticed on LinkedIn, it's important to know how these same recruiters use the system to search for talent.

Here are 3 Important Ways Recruiters Use LinkedIn!

  1. THEY SEARCH THROUGH EVERY PROFILE TO FIND PEOPLE TO FILL THEIR OPEN JOBS. While nonpaying (i.e., free account) LinkedIn users have limited ability to see and contact individuals outside their first-level connections, companies pay dearly (around $9,000 annually, per user) to obtain universal access to almost the full population of members. Also, some companies use LinkedIn as their only recruitment platform; if you don't have a profile, you'll miss out on potential job opportunities.
     
  2. THEY BUILD PROFILE SEARCHES BASED UPON A VARIETY OF KEYWORDS. Have you ever wondered why LinkedIn encourages you to fill in all the fields on your profile? It's because recruiters fill out a combination of fields and Boolean searches with their criteria to identify qualified candidates. Keywords in your headline, summary, job description, education, skills, and other fields can all be searched and found. If you're serious about being considered for career opportunities, you should also be serious about building a profile sprinkled liberally with keywords and job skills.
     
  3. THEY DECIDE WHETHER TO LOOK AT YOUR PROFILE BASED UPON YOUR HEADLINE AND PICTURE. After running a profile search in LinkedIn, recruiters will be presented with a list of candidates; featured most prominently for each individual are their headline and picture. A snappy, descriptive headline and a professional, three-quarters profile photo will make a great impression and invite a deeper look. Fail to impress, and you may get passed over.

Rodney Apple, Managing Partner at SCM Talent Group, and Katie Kurz, Marketing & Recruiting Ambassador at SCM Talent Group, contributed to this article. If you're interested in learning more about how you can optimize your LinkedIn profile for your career search, you can view our webinar on this topic here: https://youtu.be/zpfTYpupqUE

NOTE: In case you were wondering, I am in no way affiliated with LinkedIn other than as a paying user, and for my subscription I pay rack rate. But I've been using the system since its early days and while there are things about it I don't love, I firmly believe in its power as both a job search and recruitment tool.


Scott Singer is the President and Founder of Insider Career Strategies Resume Writing & Career Coaching, a firm dedicated to guiding job seekers and companies through the job search and hiring process. Insider Career Strategies provides resume writing, LinkedIn profile development, and career coaching services, including a free resume review. You can email Scott Singer at scott.singer@insidercs.com, or via the website, www.insidercs.com.

8 Effective Strategies To Snag A Rewarding Internship

iStockphoto.com/monkeybusinessimages

iStockphoto.com/monkeybusinessimages

 

Getting an internship can be challenging. And if you want to increase your appeal to a potential employer, it's absolutely essential. In the business world, internships are considered applied, real-world experience, and recent graduates with internships under their belt usually get stronger consideration.

Here are 8 effective strategies you can use today to snag a rewarding internship, and take a step forward in your career!

  1. SHARPEN YOUR RESUME. An employer looking to hire an intern will understand that you don't have professional experience in your field. But that doesn't mean you don't have relevant experience. Here are some items to incorporate into your resume which will make your resume "pop":
    • Courses you've taken which are relevant to the internship. List any course which directly bolsters your qualification for a particular internship role.
    • Technical skills. If you're a programmer, and you know C++ and Java, include them. An accounting major likely has had exposure to cost accounting, accruals, and bookkeeping. Graphic design students should know Photoshop.
    • Class projects. These show a potential employer you have an understanding of and exposure to the work you'd be doing. And if you served as the project's lead, make sure to indicate this.
    • Grade Point Average. The higher, the better. If your overall GPA is lower than the GPA within your major, include your major GPA as well.
    • Relevant leadership experience. Were you elected to Student Government? Did you serve as a Resident Assistant? Perhaps you captain the Chess Club. Or maybe you founded a campus community service organization.
       
  2. APPLY EARLY. Companies often receive thousands of applications for a single internship position. And, they'll try to fill the internship months in advance – if the internship starts in June, the employer may want to fill the role by February. If you wait until May to apply for a June internship, you may be too late.
     
  3. BE FLEXIBLE. In the U.S., Summer internships are by far the most popular, but many companies offer internships during the Fall and Spring semesters; consider applying forout-of-season internships, or a part-time internships for while you're attending class. Take a long view in terms of the work you'll be doing during the internship – perhaps the projects aren't that interesting, but sometimes gaining the real-world experience with a brand-name company will do more to position you for career success than a role which seems more exciting but doesn't provide you with any real value.
     
  4. HIT THE ON-CAMPUS CAREER FAIRS. While these take place really early in the semester (usually the beginning of the semester – See #3, above), employers often use the on-campus fairs to gather resumes for internships. You've got a great chance of meeting hiring managers at the booth – and they'll pull you aside for a deeper conversation if they like how you present yourself and the skills you offer. You can find more tips for optimizing your time at a career fair here.
     
  5. UPDATE YOUR LINKEDIN. Recruiters comb LinkedIn to identify internship candidates. Ensure that you have the phrase, "Seeking Internship Opportunities" in your headline and summary. And take the time to build out the profile so that it contains all your skills, projects, and experiences, as these contain valuable keywords.
     
  6. GET TO KNOW THE CAREER PLACEMENT OFFICE. The school's Placement Office spends its time cultivating relationships with employers. By building a collaborative relationship with the folks in the Placement Office, they can directly refer you to opportunities with companies. Remember to register your resume in their database, and to regularly check the employer job postings so that you can apply for positions directly.
     
  7. NETWORK. AGGRESSIVELY. When applying for internships with AAA companies, you're competing with students from the best schools with the best GPAs – snagging an internship can often boil down to a positive recommendation from an employee at the company. Work hard to let the world know that you're available, interested, and highly qualified. Network with your parents, relatives, friends, and anyone else who may be able to open doors for you. And talk with your professors, as they often have contacts at employers, to whom they may refer their best (or best-liked) students. Be sure to approach everyone with the utmost respect and humility – remember, if they submit your resume to a potential employer, they're doing you a favor, and they're staking their reputation on you.
     
  8. BE PROFESSIONAL. Don't give an employer any reason to doubt that you'll treat the internship as anything less than well-polished – an unprofessional presentation will kill your chances, regardless of your qualifications. Remember to:
    • Record a professional outgoing message on your voicemail.
    • Use a nice, non-offensive email address. Sorry, but partyanimal997@gmail.com will kill your candidacy.
    • Return calls or emails from employers (or anyone else). Promptly.
    • Dress professionally for any interview.
    • Use your manners. Say "please," "thank you," and all the other polite sayings your parents taught you.
    • Send "Thank You" notes to anyone you speak to or meet with. Email is fine, but follow up immediately after conversations. And don't omit anyone.

Scott Singer is the President and Founder of Insider Career Strategies Resume Writing & Career Coaching, a firm dedicated to guiding job seekers and companies through the job search and hiring process. Insider Career Strategies provides resume writing, LinkedIn profile development, and career coaching services, including a free resume review. You can email Scott Singer at scott.singer@insidercs.com, or via the website, www.insidercs.com.