Your resume is an important document. Prepare it with care. A well-presented resume can often make the difference as to whether or not you get to the next step in your job application. Remember the saying “first impressions count”.
Think about whom is going to receive and read your resume. Generally, you will either submit your resume to a recruitment agency such as Precruitment or direct to an employer. It is worth considering what happens in each of these two cases.
1. Recruitment Agency
Professional recruitment agencies such as Precruitment are highly skilled in reading resumes. It is a part of our core business. If your resume is not up to standard we will generally “look beyond the inadequacies” and search for the person behind the resume.
After normal administrative processes are completed your details, skills, education, employment history, etc., will be entered into our database of candidates. Your resume will be scanned and attached electronically to your database file.
If you are under consideration for a position you will be contacted for an interview, perhaps initially by telephone. At this stage, your file, including your resume, will be re-examined in detail. Should we consider your resume to be in need of some “TLC” we will guide you through a revision process.
If you are short-listed for a position we will seek your permission to submit your resume to our client. We will ensure that the resume that is presented will represent you in the best possible light.
2. Direct to an Employer
It is important to remember that employers may not be skilled recruiters. Recruiting is not their core business. Even if an employer has a HR department there is a probability that the HR staff will not be skilled recruiters.
So, it is important that when you submit your resume direct to an employer your resume is effective. You only get one chance!
Employers are busy people who are focused on their business. The recruitment process is an additional and time-consuming task that they must complete. It is likely that the employer will receive many applications for the position they have advertised.
The employer will generally read all resumes received and sort them into three piles – good, maybe and definitely not! Your resume needs to be in the “good” pile! With some employers, this sorting process can be fairly arbitrary and based on first impressions. Few employers will “look beyond the inadequacies” of a resume. Remember, “First impressions count!”
Your Resume Should Be
- Short. A resume is not a biography or a novel.
- Accurate. Ensure your resume does not contain any “misleading facts” nor has any spelling or grammatical mistakes.
- Tailored. Your resume should be tailored to meet the specific requirements of the position for which you are applying.
- Electronic. Recruitment agencies prefer electronic copies, either by email or USB, using a MS Word. This is particularly important when submitting your resume to an employment agency such as Precruitment.
- Printed on Quality White Paper using a quality laser printer. Forget the fancy paper and fancy fonts. Quality, crisp white paper is best. An easy to read font is best. In addition to a printed copy, provide an electronic copy either on USB or by email.
A Sample Outline Resume
Click here to open a outline to help you to develop your resume.
Your Resume Should Not
- Contain a Photo. Photographs may be used to discriminate between applicants on the basis of appearance.
- Be elaborately bound. Most recruiting companies and employers will immediately remove your resume from its binding so that it can be handled and filed with ease.
- Contain your birth date. An employer is not entitled to know your birth date until after you have been made a firm job offer. Savvy employers will not ask. Employers should not discriminate on the basis of age. If they do not know your age they cannot be accused of discriminating on that basis.
- Contain your marital status. Your marital status should not have any influence upon your chances for employment. This is especially important for women. Once again, savvy employers will not ask.