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This presentation teaches you how to choose the right layout for your resume, depending on the job you are applying for in relation to your experiences, but also how to make sure it is focused and relevant for the employer. Also learn how to write an effective cover letter that showcases your "WOW!" factor! No mysteries, just answers!
Resumes & Cover Letters<br />Ute Perkovic<br />Employment Specialist<br />The Works – <br />Job and Career Services<br />
Objectives<br /> By the end of this session, you will be able to: <br />Identify the goal of a resume<br />Describe 3 different ways to layout your resume<br />Understand how to focus your resume<br />Be able to write a resume<br />Be able to write a cover letter<br />
Your resume has one goal...<br />Get you the<br />interview!<br />
What is a resume?<br />A resume is a summary of relevant facts about you that shows how you are perfect for the job you are seeking<br />It needs to be specific for each type of job you are seeking<br />It is a marketing tool<br />
Questions your resume should answer:<br /> 1. Why are you submitting your resume? (objective)<br /> 2. How does your education and/or experience fit the job you are applying for? (education & experience)<br /> 3. How well have you done it? (accomplishments & achievements) <br />4. What, where and when have you done it? (work history)<br />5. Who can verify all the above? (references)<br />
Get Their Attention!<br />You have 30 seconds – or less!<br />What can you do for them?<br />Why would they want to hire you (what makes you special, what is your “so what?” factor?)<br />
Five steps to building a resume<br />Research / learn about the employer and the job<br />Gather personal facts (what do you have that they want?)<br />Choose a resume format (what is the best way to tell them?)<br />Write the actual resume<br />Edit!<br />
Why you need to research<br />Because you need to find out what they are all about so you can see… <br />…how you might fit in to that organization - personality wise and otherwise,<br />…how you might be able to contribute to their success<br />…what things about them resonate with you – they may want to know why you want to work for them as opposed to their competitor! <br />Thus, by doing research on them before you write your resume, you might find something out that could give your resume an edge that other applicants may miss in theirs!<br />
How to Research<br />Analyze the job ad or similar ones<br />Explore the company website <br />Call or visit the company<br />Consult Occupational profiles<br />Review Graduate Summaries<br />Watch the company’s advertisements<br />Investigate what others say about the company <br />Read trade publications<br />Listen to news reports<br />
What you should learn about…<br />Why you want to work for them (review the ‘why you should research’ slide).<br />The qualifications and skills are they most interested in.<br />What image should you project.<br />Impress them with what you know!<br />
What you should look for…<br />…key skills they require or would be assets (look for verbs)<br />…personal characteristics or values<br />…business details that “speak” to you<br />…amount or level of experience they need.<br />…ways that you could contribute to their success!<br />If you have questions about a job ad or the type of work you are looking for, call the prospective employer to ask!<br />
Gather your personal facts<br />IDENTIFYwhich of your personal facts are RELEVANT and TRANSFERRABLE to the job you are applying for or looking to get into:<br /><ul><li>Your education/training details
Your hobbies, interests, relevant memberships</li></li></ul><li>STEP 3<br />CHOOSE A RESUME FORMAT<br />
Choose a Resume Format<br />Refers to how you organize the content of your resume:<br />1. Chronological (Lists all your experience from most recent, working backwards in time). <br />Best if you have direct experience & are staying in the same line of work.<br />2. Functional (Lists experience in skills clusters) Best if you are going into a different line of work.<br />3. Combination (Takes the skill clusters from the functional and work history from the chronological formats) Showcases your “WOW” factor for any type of job you may wish to apply for.<br />
Long-windedness (no more than 2 pages please!)</li></ul>Avoid discrimination<br /><ul><li>Over personalizing (i.e., don’t include a photo of yourself unless you are applying for a modeling job!)</li></li></ul><li>But above all,<br />your resume must be focused on the job or type of work …<br />…you are applying for!<br />
Sample Template of a Combination Resume<br />7 Parts:<br />Contact Information<br />Highlights<br />Education<br />Experience – List Skill Titles/Clusters and statements that support how you have each of these<br />Work History – List dates, job titles, & places only<br />Volunteer/Interests/Activities/Memberships<br />References<br />
Personal/Contact Info<br />Name<br />Address<br />Phone number <br />Message number<br />Make sure your message is in good taste/appropriate<br />E-mail address<br />- Again, make sure it is in good taste/professional<br />
Goal/Objective/Target<br />May identify the job you are applying for <br />A statement of what you offer<br />Focus on needs of the employer<br />
Goal /Objective/Target<br />BAD: <br /> A good paying, full time job so I can pay off my student loan and support my four kids.<br />(Not focused on a type of job, not focused on the employer, and too much personal information.)<br />
Goal /Objective/Target<br />BETTER: <br /> A career within the banking industry that will utilize my customer service skills.<br />(It’s focused on a type of job this time, and does provide a clue as to what the writer offers by way of a key skill needed for the job.)<br />
Goal /Objective/Target<br />BEST: <br /> To provide strong customer service skills to the banking industry as a Branch Administration Trainee with Alberta Treasury Branches.<br />
What makes you ideal for the job?<br /><ul><li>The “Answer the Employer’s Prayers” section of your resume!
It’s a mini resume, highlighting or summarizing key things about you that make you perfect for this specific job.
The rest of your resume and / or references should back up or substantiate what you’ve listed as your highlights</li></li></ul><li>What makes you ideal for the job?<br />Example Objective: IT Help Desk position<br /><ul><li>Experience you have (2 years customer service experience through the retail sales industry)
Relevant credentials or training you may have (Computer Information Technology diploma from Lethbridge College)
Significant accomplishment(s) briefly stated (Commended by last employer for providing excellent service to a customer who had sent the company a thank you note about me)
Outstanding skills or abilities (Excellent problem solving skills as developed through 10 years work experience as a Radio Technician in China)
Other criteria you have that may be needed for the job (i.e., good health, no criminal record, bondable, clean driver’s abstract, etc., build English through Toastmasters International, – relevant to the job).
A reference to your values and/or characteristics that are needed for the job (positive attitude and eager to learn). </li></li></ul><li>Part 4<br />YOUR EDUCATION & <br />TRAINING<br />
Educationand Training<br />List current education<br />List your foreign education only if relevant to the job you are applying for<br />Grades count (3.0+) so be able to prove it!<br />
Skills/Abilities/Accomplishments<br />List the key skillsyou have that are needed for the job.<br />Write statements that support how you have each of the key skills.<br />When saying how you have those skills,<br />be specific,<br />be relevant,<br />emphasize how you have that skill, and/or<br />List any results<br />Use categorized action word lists to help you start your support statements<br />www.thesaurus.com<br />
Old: Supervised staff<br />New:Developed an Employee of the Month program which resulted in increased staff retention.<br />Old: Processed customer purchases<br />New: Helped a new customer locate a special purchase item by using my business contacts, resulting in a very satisfied and repeat customer.<br />Old: Team Player<br />New:Collaborated with three other staff members to create a work schedule which increased service availability and convenience for customers.<br /><ul><li>Old: Worked customer service</li></ul>New: Implemented a customer complaint process allowing for quicker turn around time in dealing with complaints.<br />Old: Filed, answered phones, and ran the office<br />New:Re-arranged the time frame in which flight bookings were made, thus saving the company 50% in travel costs. <br />
Employment History<br />Keep it simple – dates, position title, company name, company location<br />Dates are important<br />Minimal gaps are okay<br />Volunteer work counts!!<br />List foreign work, too.<br />10 year chronology (most recent and work backwards)<br />
Edit your resume<br />Point form<br />Targeted and focused<br />No abbreviations unless they are industry standard<br />Consistent formatting<br />Make sure your spelling is perfect! <br />
Cover Letters<br />Ute Perkovic<br />Employment Specialist<br />The Works – <br />Job and Career Services<br />
Why do I need a cover letter?<br />It’s expected!<br />It tells the employer exactly what kind of job you want and focuses on how your background is relevant to that job.<br />It shows the employer how you fit the company’s needs<br />A well written interesting cover letter entices the employer to want to learn more about you!<br />It’s your opening impression!<br />
Cover Letter House-Keeping<br />Practice your business writing skills. This means:<br /><ul><li>put your mailing address at the top,
same contact information!</li></ul>Keep the letter within one page, no more than that!<br />Be original and show enthusiasm!<br />Ensure your spelling and grammar are perfect!<br />
How to Write a Memorable Cover Letter<br />Write your resume first. <br />In the first paragraph, tell the reader:<br /><ul><li>Why you are writing,
What you like about the organization (that resonated with you), and
What you have to offer in general. </li></li></ul><li>How to Write a Memorable Cover Letter<br />In the secondparagraph, focus on how you are perfect for the job: <br /><ul><li>Identify one or two key aspects (it could be a skill, value, amount of experience, etc.) that the employer is looking for and that you have from your background.
Provide an example that demonstrates how you have that skill, ability, etc.
Use the S.T.A.R. method to illustrate this example.