What is in a good resume?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 09, 2010 12:14 AM GMT
    Helping a friend get his resume ready because he graduates in December. I told him that the following made a solid resume.

    A degree (Obviously)
    Work Experience (any)
    Internships
    Leadership Experience
    Study Abroad ( it is a global economy)

    Your thoughts?
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    Aug 09, 2010 12:55 AM GMT
    Well if you find out what works let me know. So far, a degree (I have two MBA and BBA), experience (over 12 years in telecom and customer service plus owning my own business the last 7 years), leadership experience (held management positions in a Fortune 50 company and a small start up company) have yielded me nothing....not even an interview. Of course I'm 46 and as much as I'd like to believe that doesn't matter, it probably does. If he's young fresh out of college and will work for cheap, I'm sure some company will snap him up.

    Hmmmm, I think I'd better lay off the bitter pills, LOL! icon_razz.gif

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 09, 2010 1:02 AM GMT
    Depending on the industry, he might want to add a summary/objective at the top and key skills (languages, software, graphic design, etc).
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    Aug 09, 2010 1:14 AM GMT
    He will need a good cover letter to go with the resume, and it should probably be customized for each job he applies for.

    If there's a career services center at his school, he can have the staff there look over his resume and cover letter. They'll probably have some helpful suggestions.

    Also: those offices often get contacted by employers, so if his resume is on file, or if he is just on their radar screen, they will be able to help him with his job search.

    Many of those offices also offer services to alumni.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 09, 2010 1:20 AM GMT
    A good resume is one that gets you hired.


    Um lame response aside you need to stand out. My experience working at Disney didn't really teach me anything other than life skills but at every interview I'll get excited questions asking me about my experience.
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    Aug 09, 2010 1:24 AM GMT
    Demonstrable examples of value to the employer.
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    Aug 09, 2010 1:25 AM GMT
    Tailored content to address a specific position description.

    In other words, you should create a tailored resume for every position that you seek. One size does not fit all.

    The ultimate purpose of the resume is to get hired. However, the "next step" objective should be to entice the person who is looking at the resume to engage you in a conversation (ideally a meeting/interview).
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 09, 2010 1:37 AM GMT
    Specific contributions to the success of projects, positions or teams he has previously belonged to. Any initiative that he created or implemented that resulted in a value-add should be listed.

    for example, increased account retention by 17% through implementing follow up phone calls.

    Volunteer work should also be listed.

    If he has no "job" experience, church, athletics, student government, school project work can all be sources of examples of how he brings value to an organization.

    BE HONEST in the info provided and help him prepare to answer questions about what he lists. Once he lands an interview other tactics come into play. Ultimately most hiring managers want people who they can see as someone they'd want to spend time with. The fit-in factor is huge. He just needs to be himself and answer honestly.

    When I was heavy into interviewing for employees I would always end with why do you want work here and what do know about our company? It is a large multi-industry company that has tons of information on its website. Yet very few had bothered to research it. Those that did almost always had a second interview.

    A quick google search can arm him with lots of info to ask about, or provide, if he is asked about the firm he has applied to. This applies even to smaller local firms where awards may have been won or their support for certain charities etc is listed.

    Why do want to work here? I read that you support the MS Society and Im impressed with your decision to support the community. I'd like to work for a socially responsible firm and yours clearly is one.

    See, easy! Its never too early to start kissing ass. icon_eek.gif
  • calibro

    Posts: 8888

    Aug 09, 2010 1:45 AM GMT
    nakey pics of yourself
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 09, 2010 1:45 AM GMT
    He is in agriculture and most of its posting online. Hes doing double duty in school and working the farm back home. Poor guy. Hes not gonna have the time to seriously apply.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 09, 2010 1:46 AM GMT
    Anything that is relevant for the position you are applying for. As mentioned previously, each resume should be tailored for the position/industry you are applying for.

    One the front page of mine I have the basics:my name, a contact telephone number and an email address (a proper one; not something stupid like hot_jock_69@hotmail.com). I then have my degrees listed (the degree, institution it was awarded from, month/year of attainment). Then two referees (names, organisations, contact details).

    On the second page I have my employment history - where I work now and what I do (briefly), then maybe half a page of the other (relevant) places I have worked. I'm an academic at a university; a prospective employer doesn't need to know I used to work at a video store but they do need to know I used to teach at another university prior to starting where I work now (which is a research only position).

    The rest of my resume is academic stuff - papers, grants, conference presentations, media engagement.

    On the back page I have 'other achievements' - this is where I put what computer software I can use, languages I can speak, courses I have completed, any volunteer work, stuff like that. I also have that I am the captain of my hockey team. Sounds lame, but I research sport and I want a prospective employer to see the link between my work and life.

    If I cut out all the academic crap from my resume I can get it down to about 1 page, double sided. I personally think that, with a good cover letter, that gives enough information to get a person into an interview.

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    Aug 09, 2010 1:48 AM GMT
    agri_sci saidHe is in agriculture and most of its posting online. Hes doing double duty in school and working the farm back home. Poor guy. Hes not gonna have the time to seriously apply.


    Then his family must have industry contacts. What is he interested in doing? Ag Sales? Research?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 09, 2010 1:48 AM GMT
    When I was laidoff, I hired a professional recruiting firm. The fee was a tax write off as well.

    They helped me with my resume, and when I saw it, I was like.. WOW. I would hire that guy.

    I have helped 2 other friends get jobs with a good looking resume. Pay it forward.
  • Leo123

    Posts: 126

    Aug 09, 2010 4:06 AM GMT
    Forget about yourself.

    You need to tell the employer what he wants to hear.

    Read the job advert carefully. Write a resume based on that. Don't be lazy and include a cover letter too. It - is - important. Be concise and tailor your experiences and education specifically to the job offer. It doesn't matter if you have two MBA's if all the employer wants is to fill an assistant position, for example.
    An assistant position is likely to require a complete or in course college degree + 2 years work experience, so that's what you're putting down.
    Use this analogy for other positions.

    When you land an interview, dress appropriately. Practice before you go. Some questions are cliche (ie. where do you forsee yourself 5 years from now, your greatest achievements and so forth).
    Basically you need to show that you're a stable person and that you know where your career is headed. If you don't know what you want in life then what's left for you?

    Hope this helps.



  • BIG_N_TALL

    Posts: 2190

    Aug 09, 2010 4:11 AM GMT
    Shortnsexystud saidIf he's young fresh out of college and will work for cheap, I'm sure some company will snap him up.


    I don't think so... I have only received two interview invitations after 8 months of searching and hundreds of applications/resume submittals. At the moment, I am still in the running for one of those jobs I got an interview for, but now I am being scheduled for a polygraph. icon_neutral.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 09, 2010 4:28 AM GMT
    Shortnsexystud saidWell if you find out what works let me know. So far, a degree (I have two MBA and BBA), experience (over 12 years in telecom and customer service plus owning my own business the last 7 years), leadership experience (held management positions in a Fortune 50 company and a small start up company) have yielded me nothing....not even an interview. Of course I'm 46 and as much as I'd like to believe that doesn't matter, it probably does. If he's young fresh out of college and will work for cheap, I'm sure some company will snap him up.

    Hmmmm, I think I'd better lay off the bitter pills, LOL! icon_razz.gif



    Oh thank God it's not just me!!

    I'm 43, and had to close my company recently, and have been sending out resumes like CRAZY (well over 200...so far), and have yet to get any hits. I've even had it critiqued on Monster and Careerbuilder because I was getting concerned it might not be a good resume. They both say it's a solid resume, so...wtf??

    Bitter, party of 2, Shortnsexystud?icon_wink.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 09, 2010 5:41 AM GMT
    Personal info at the top (name, address etc)

    then education

    then work experience


    then all the extras, such as hobbies or languages or volunteer work or computer skills (if not required in the former)
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    Aug 09, 2010 6:25 AM GMT
    My experience and opinion

    -Employers generally throw resumes that exceed more than a page
    -Avoid redundancy, ie) if a specific skill happened at two jobs, include one
    -short, concise thoughts
    -Curricula Vitae should always be a separate entity
    -Employers do not want to read the identifier 'I'. Never start a sentence in your resume with "I did......" or "I was..." or "I accomplished...".

    HEADER

    OBJECTIVE: This is extremely important and pertinent to the job. Be creative but again do not begin with "I". This is already in your header. One or two sentences providing your goal with the company or even a personal goal to gain experience.

    EXPERIENCE: Self Explanatory
    Company, dates employed, job specifics, recognitions

    EDUCATION: Elaborate the hell out of your education. This is where GPA and educational path are included. Include specifics on why and how the degree pinpoints to the job.

    SKILLS: Anymore generic skills that might be an attribute to the company

    REFERENCES(3): Name, contact, relationship

    AGAIN, with the economy the way it is and employers receiving hundreds of resumes keep it simple but relevant. No one wants to read through two pages of employment history because all of it can't possibly pertain to the job. The objective is the first thing they read and continue down. They really also look at employment dates too. GOOD LUCK!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 09, 2010 7:06 AM GMT
    I would agree about brevity.

    I applied for a couple internships around Washington DC and wasn't getting a very good response (and I wanted to work for free!!!) and one guy from an organization gave me a helpful hint...he said that most of the people I was sending them to were probably just throwing them away because it was 2 pages long.

    Be short and concise. Keep it to 1 full page or less and tailor it specifically for each job you're applying for.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 09, 2010 7:46 AM GMT
    Ambitious but realistic career plans.
    Publications (if they are in a low-impact journal see if you can spin it, e.g. did it get many citations compared to the impact factor, was it cited in high impact work, did it enable new research)
    Poster presentations
    Volunteer work (though consider skipping it if it is politically charged)
    A picture (just a thumbnail - having a visual makes it easier to remember the application)