All right, resume writing. There are three ways to make an impression on your potential employer. Cover letter, resume, and interview. Unfortunately like most millenials, I have not fully figured out how the mythical cover letter works just quite yet, BUT I am decent at setting up a resume. Here are what I’ve learned throughout my college years of applying for jobs and internships. This is meant for people trying to apply for office both in and out of their fields. If you’re trying to apply for a dental hygienist job or anything specific, this post is not for you, go get the necessary certifications for it.
As strange as it sounds, yet unsurprising, your layout can make or break your chance of getting the job, or even be considered. It’s 2017, if your resume looks like a list of all the things you’ve done and your name in bold letters at the top, your resume is going in the “no” pile. That being said, make sure your layout caters to the job you’re applying for! If you’re applying for a medical related job, I doubt they care that your color scheme doesn’t match. If you’re applying to a job in the creative field, then by all means, break out the color palette, but stick with 4 colors max. If you’re indecisive and are overwhelmed with your choices, search color scheme on Pinterest.
Not sure how to set up your resume? There are site like canva.com and google docs for that.
Which resume are you more likely to remember? You don’t need an over the top resume design, just a simple but memorable one. As easy as it is to just fill out a template online, make sure you pay attention to which part of the resume it emphasizes. No one wants to read through your list of skills if what they’re looking for is your volunteering history and experience. Keep your resume to 1 or 2 pages. Yeah 1 OR 2. Not one and a half, not a quarter or a third. One or two pages.
Softskills vs. Hardskills
What the heck is a soft skill? It’s your adaptability, group cooperation, or motivation. Employers want to see that you’re a well rounded person that will potentially add character to their office and team.
Examples of soft skills:
- thrives in group environment/collaborative
- accepts feedback
- conflict management
- Effective communicator
These make you a person on the team, not just a machine.
By now you can guess that hard skills are more technical skills that you’ve acquired through either bootcamps or classes. These need to be taught, preferably certified.
- coding languages
- web design
This is probably the easiest thing to overlook. How badly can you mess up on a list of things you know how to do right? I’ve learned this the hard way so that you didn’t have to. While applying to an editorial internship, my resume had a typo that said 33 years of photoshop instead of 3. No I didn’t get an interview. Have a grammar nazi look over your resume. You’ll thank them for it later.
Catering to the job:
Another no brainer but as a personal assistant, you’d be surprised by how many graphic designers’ resumes I’ve filter through while helping my boss hire new real estate agents. Yes, while real estate is a trainable job, you still need a license to practice. So while your skills with photoshop and illustrator are impressive, I don’t want to see your portfolio. On that note, make sure the jobs you’re putting on your resume correlate to the job your applying for.
Look at the job description for the one you’re applying for and try to match it up with your own resumes. Did you record customer feedback for data analysis as a cashier while you were asking them to fill out surveys? Or interact with customers through yelp and provided the necessary services? A lot of times, we don’t even know what we do as a cashier or social media coordinator or a receptionist.
If not, be prepared to answer for it. I’ve sat in during interviews where the applicants get hammered with questions for it and it’s really not another item to add to your list of things to be stressed out about. A simple way to do this is to translate your skills accordingly. Spent most of your college years waitressing but want to apply for a human resource office job? Congrats, you spent your college years “observing interaction between customer and staff” Fluffing up your resume is perfectly fine but know your limit. You didn’t “provide medical assistance” because you gave a kid a band aid as a receptionist. Be realistic.
Another way you can do this is to ONLY list the job experiences that is relevant to the job. Unless you’re aiming for restaurant management, no one wants to know you worked at 8 different chain restaurants as a waitress. Well, actually, even then that just looks bad because it shows you
- Can’t commit to a job
- was let go multiple times
To prevent having a 10 page resume( just kidding, I’ve only had like 3 real jobs. The rest were just random freelance stuff) I keep a master list of all my previous jobs and internships. I call it my master resume. It has all my experience, skills, certification and I choose from each category depending on the job I’m applying for.
That’s all I have to offer, hopefully it saved someone an anxiety attack, post grad life is scary enough. That being said, if you need help with your resume, message me and I’ll do what I can to help.