Deniece Ashley Resume November 20, 2015 02:57:46
The job market is a tough one right now, and it clearly favors employers over job seekers. There are simply more job seekers than available jobs. Competing in this market means that you need a solid resume, and one that recognizes a current reality for technical jobs. Employers are not just filling positions. They are looking to hire ”the whole person” – someone who fits organizationally and culturally, and who can fill multiple job roles. The bottom line: You’ll be more competitive in this job market if you have a resume that shows ”the whole person.” The Resume Challenge. Almost without exception, no one likes to work on their resume. It ranks somewhere close to filing taxes or having cavities filled on the list of unpleasant things in life. It is one of those undesirable activities that simply must be done and done right. Many hire tax professionals to complete their returns, and nobody fills their own cavities. But all too often we struggle alone to produce resumes. My recommendation: Get some help! Seek help from your friends and colleagues, and perhaps from a resume professional. But even when you use the services of a professional resume writer, you can’t abdicate responsibility to make your resume personal and human – to let the ”whole person” shine through. Creating a resume that accurately portrays your skills, experience, interests, and personality can only be done with your participation and the participation of those who know you well. Participation means reflection on who you are and what you want to do – a task that can’t be hired, contracted, or delegated.
2. Use Key Words. Computer programmers understand logic and algorithms. Use this to your advantage by applying this approach to your resume. The prescreening process is very methodical. In many cases, these screens are done using logic in software applications especially if you apply online. Additional screenings may be completed by human resources or other non-technical personnel who do not always understand the technologies required for the position for which you are applying but are merely using a checklist for resume screening. Hopefully you are beginning to see why it is so important to use key words on your resume. Let me clarify that, it is so important to use the RIGHT key words on your resume. Nearly all initial resume screenings are done using a checklist of items that must appear in order to advance to the next level, regardless of whether it is screened by computer or staff. If you don’t have the correct ratio of keywords on your resume for the position, you don’t make the cut. So why do so many experienced candidates for computer programmer jobs not make sure that the correct keywords are on their resume for each individual position for which they apply? It’s usually a combination of attention to detail and desire to respond quickly.
If you don’t have certifications, why not begin training for the one most applicable to you? These can ease a career transition proving your knowledge in new areas where you may not have as much work experience. There are many great online or in-person training programs to prepare you for the certification exams. 5. Show any Training and Education. List any degrees you hold since most employers want to see these. If you have work towards a degree, but are still pursuing or have never finished but you may someday, list it as in progress. You also want to provide a short listing of relevant technology training courses you have taken. Many candidates forget to list these items out. They can help further demonstrate your expertise and exposure to different technologies, especially for a less experienced candidate. I suggest putting Training last on your resume, just below Education. As an added bonus, listing these technology skill trainings helps add more key words to your resume and improve your results on resume screenings.
Tip 3. A Simple Resume Format and Resume Template Work Best. A lot of the initial resume review process may be done using software tools as discussed above. This software typically scans a resume for specific sections of information, such as profile or summary, work experience, education, training, etc. If the software can’t identify where information is in your resume, it is likely that the information you worked so hard to put in your resume will just be skipped over. Rarely will you get a second chance from an in-person reviewer. So keep your resume format simple to avoid having any issues with software tools used by potential employers. Tip 4. Present Your Work Experience in a CAR. Not a literal car, but an acronym CAR to help guide your resume writing. First, for each position listed on your resume, provide a short paragraph that describes your roles and responsibilities. This tip is designed to make sure you use keywords related to the position that the software may be searching for in your resume. If done correctly, it should allow your resume to earn a higher ranking in the system.
Typical Misconceptions. One of the first misconceptions that people hold about the use of resumes is that they are never actually read, especially when there are online application forms to be filled out. While this cannot be proven either way, I do know from my own experience as a professional writer that most recruiters do look at the resumes received because it provides a general overview of the candidate’s attention to, or lack thereof, details such as the style and type of writing. Another common misconception is that a resume must be one page in total length. I am not certain I know how that idea became popular or why it has remained so engrained as it ultimately serves little purpose for most candidates and it can work to the detriment of a job seeker. The reason why is that a one page resume, for a person who has fairly extensive experience, can sell them short. This type of resume will either leave off critical information or it will be typed in a font size that is not easy to read. Other misconceptions include the use of an objective on the resume and writing detailed job descriptions. A job objective is usually a statement of what the candidate would like to do or the specific job they are seeking. The reason why this is not needed is that the cover letter should express interest in the position and there is no need to state it again. In addition, many objective statements are so specific that the candidate would be ruled out from other potential positions that may be related to the advertised job. In addition, many jobs I have seen listed on resumes includes wording that either came from job descriptions or have been written like standard wording from these types of descriptions, and that doesn’t necessarily explain the skills the candidate has and may contain jargon that is not easily understood by everyone reading it.
RESUME FORMATS. What are the differences between keyword, scannable, web, traditional, and text resumes? Traditional resumes are designed, as already noted, to compel the human reader, through persuasive language and design, to take further action and call you for an interview. Layout and page design are critical and should be planned strategically to draw the eye to areas of emphasis. The most effective traditional resumes are focused on achievements and written in powerful, active language that captures and holds the attention of the reader. Scannable resumes — also a printed, hardcopy format — are designed primarily for accurate scanning into a computer. Captured as an image, scannable resumes are fed through OCR (optical character recognition) software that reads and extracts the text. The extracted text is databased for storage and later recalled by keyword from an applicant tracking system. Scannable resumes are very rarely requested any more. If you are asked for a scannable resume, the most efficient option is to email the requestor your plain ASCII text resume (described next).