Resumes are a marketing tool and you have to be clever, a snoop and put forth a voracious effort to get a job
Resumes are targeted, concise and outline benefits to the end user.
I was speaking with a resume client recently. We had created a new resume a few months ago and she called to ask if we could update it so she could apply for a different position than the one she was initially going for. That made a great reason. So we talked and we tweaked and her resume now has the required expertise that is directly related to the job she’s going after.
She got the job.
Of course, she landed the job because of her talent and the need for that talent. But don’t dismiss this additional reason: her resume was treated like a marketing tool. As with any marketing tool, they have their own distinct rules. Effective resumes are targeted, focused, concise, and outline benefits to the end user. And hers did.
As I was speaking to her, I got the real scoop on what it’s like out there. She’s a high-level director within the healthcare industry, but her experience is directly applicable to the job search for anyone. I could write a book on this but many have and I’m not in the job search business.
However I am in the business of writing marketing materials and resumes and I have a great deal of empathy for anyone having to look for a new job.
Here’s her take – just four points:
You have to believe in yourself and your capabilities – every single day
You have to know in your heart that they won’t be sorry they hired you
You need to know you will get a job
It’s OK to have good and bad days – that’s simply being human
A resume writer’s take on the job search process.
Here’s my take on the process – six important points:
- Write a cover letter that addresses why you’re the best candidate for the job
- Show you know what the company does
- You need to know the job you’re going after
- Target your resume to the job you’re going after and show results
- A resume isn’t going to get you a job
- Use Spell Check then review it again. Spell Check doesn’t catch everything.
- Read this article – it’s one of the better ones I’ve seen.
Oh, and almost every company uses software to filter resumes.
You don’t have to go all fancy.
Now, just a little something extra. Several of my clients have asked if we need to use the symbols over the word résumé. You don’t need to add it. That accent, or “acute accent” to be correct, is borrowed from the French. So technically you would be following grammar rules laid down by the French and not by us. If you are applying to a French firm, I would definitely include it. I’ll be glad to share how you do it.
A resume doesn’t do the whole job. You do.
Here’s a final thought that’s really going to throw you for a loop. To my point #4 above: a resume is simply a way into a door, or not. You have to be clever, a snoop, and put forth a voracious effort to get a job. This book backs up what I’m saying. Scan it. And let me know if I can help: “Don’t Send A Resume” by Jeffrey J. Fox.
I hope some of this helps you or someone you know because it isn’t easy to look for a job. I’ll be happy to talk to you about your job search challenges at any time.
Cindy Stephens has been writing resumes for upper-level management clients for over ten years. She knows the latest games played by search engine filters and has an intimate knowledge of the job search game.