Jocelyn Cabrera. Resume. September 25th , 2017.
K.I.S.S. - A wiser man than me once made this bold statement and it's extremely applicable when writing your resume: Keep It Simple, Stupid! Too many people make too much of an effort to 'stand out from the pack' and in doing so they may unwittingly be hurting themselves. In some professions, such as the creative design field, it may be advantageous to show your originality and imagination, but in other business fields this kind of flamboyancy in a resume is unnecessary and can actually be injurious to your cause. In terms of formatting, the same holds true. I have found that people tend to have much more success when they opt for an uncomplicated formatting style. Some people still want to get all jazzed up with pictures and text boxes and funky font, but that's just fluff. It's noise. It is irrelevant to the purpose of your resume, which is to sell yourself through highlighting your skills and accomplishments. And hiring managers see right through that!
A challenge for many people is knowing how to create an effective resume. You can conduct an Internet search and find literally hundreds of online articles and resources that provide fairly standard methods of creating a resume; however, that can become overwhelming in time. In addition, few people are highly skilled as a writer, and poorly written sentences with numerous spelling and grammatical errors can create a poor impression. You have to keep in mind the fact that when you send out a resume it is taking your place and represents you as a person, without the guarantee of securing an interview - and that means your resume can make or break your job prospects before you ever get to speak to someone about it.
Another misconception involves the cover letter, which is often written as several paragraphs in length for people who believe a lot is required on that first introductory page. But that defeats the real purpose of a cover letter and minimizes the time a recruiter is likely to spend reading the resume. A cover letter only needs to express interest in a position and generate a desire within the recruiter to read the attached resume. The underlying reason for these misconceptions is due to the unlimited number of online articles and posts written about resumes, along with templates and samples that are easily accessible. Whenever someone begins to sort through all of these resources the end result is often a patchwork of various themes and styles. What makes this worse is that there are few people who can write objectively about their career and the jobs they have held. As an example, I've written resumes for sales professionals and even professional writers. In addition, many people lack exemplary writing skills. It is not uncommon to observe resumes with uneven font sizes and errors with spelling, grammar, punctuation, capitalization, and other mechanical errors. I've also observed verbose wording, jobs written like a standard job description, and clichés (thinking outside of the box, being a team player, etc.).
If you decide to contact a resume writer, take time to learn about their background, their approach to resume writing, and their general disposition towards helping their clients. A certificate from a resume institute or something similar does not automatically guarantee they are proficient with formatting and editing. And should a resume writer charge excessive fees and make promises about the results you can expect, also be cautious as the resume is only the first step needed when trying to secure a new job - and it is a very important starting point. If you don't gain an opportunity to speak to someone about your background then your prospects with that employer have been minimized. This underscores the importance of hiring a professional to develop your resume. You cannot afford to wing it on your own, so to speak, especially if the timing for a new job has become critical or you have found it difficult to gain the attention of recruiters and prospective employers. An investment in your resume becomes an investment in your career, one that may result in helping you find and acquire a new job. If you have any hesitation about sending out your current resume, now is the time to contact a professional.
Text resumes (also referred to as ASCII resumes) are just what the name implies, an ASCII-formatted version of either your traditional or scannable resume. Text resumes are universally readable on all computer systems and platforms and are the preferred format when you are emailing your resume. An ASCII resume received in email can be entered directly into an applicant tracking system without the added step of needing to scan it. Entry into the system is fast, easy, and accurate and so many employers and recruiters prefer this format.
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