• Resume rules: Avoid common mistakes and stand out [video]

    March 31, 2017 by

     

    College Recruiter spoke with Joanne Meehl, President and primary Job Coach & Career Consultant at Joanne Meehl Career Services.  Joanne is part of College Recruiter’s Panel of Experts, which is made up of professionals around the country with top notch advice for recruiters and HR professionals, or for entry level job seekers. Here, Joanne shares her insight into resume rules that help college students and grads avoid mistakes and stand out to the applicant tracking systems. Continue Reading

  • What makes job seekers highly effective: Part 2

    July 06, 2016 by

    When job seekers find immediate success, what are they doing right? How are they standing out from the rest of the applicants who earn interviews?

    Those job seeker secrets to success were discussed in detail as part of the Successful Job Seekers Research portion of the 2016 Job Preparedness Indicator Study. The survey was conducted in March 2015 by the Career Advisory Board (CAB) established by DeVry University. As part of the research, over 500 job seekers were surveyed and the key findings and data from the research are highlighted in the accompanying video featuring Steven Rothberg, founder of College Recruiter, moderating a discussion with Alexandra Levit, a consultant, speaker, and workplace expert who has written six career advice books, and was formerly a nationally syndicated career columnist for the Wall Street Journal, and Madeleine Slutsky of DeVry University. The interview and discussion takes place from Google’s Chicago offices during the NACE 2016 Conference in June.

    Read the first article in this series: What makes a job seeker highly effective, Part 1 and learn more in the video below:


    If the video is not playing or displaying properly click here.

    What criteria qualifies one as a successful job seeker? According to the 2016 Job Preparedness Indicator Study, this includes:

    A. Active job seekers who secured a job offer within six months of their first interview.
    B. Passive candidates who already had a job, were recruited, and accepted an offer within 6 months of being recruited.

    “That’s pretty successful,” says Levit. “If you’re able to get a new job within six months, you’re doing something right.”

    According to the study, the first thing successful job seekers do is target their job search to a specific company.

    “The conventional wisdom is that if you just send your resume out to as many people as possible, it’s a number game; eventually something will hit,” says Levit. “In fact, this is the opposite of what we found to be true.”

    According to the survey data, 51 percent of active job seekers applied to five or fewer positions, and 66 percent applied to 10 or fewer jobs.

    “The majority of our successful job seekers are really going after specific companies they want to work at,” says Levit.

    They also know that they are qualified for those jobs, before submitting applications, says Levit. The research showed that 90 percent of job seekers wanted to be at least 75 percent qualified before applying to a targeted company and job, meaning they fit at least seven out of the 10 requirements of the job description before applying. In addition, 41 percent wanted to be at least 90 percent qualified before applying – meaning they fit nine out of the 10 requirements of the job description before applying.

    Successful job seekers also customize their resume and job search, and do significant research before putting together their cover letter, resume, and online profile for their target company. The survey results showed that 67 percent of successful job seekers reached out to the company contact person, and 32 percent reached out to their network to get inside info on the target company before applying. In addition, 84 percent tailored their resume to the exact specifics of the job they were targeting, updating it for each job. Translation: A targeted resume is much more effective than a one-size-fits-all resume.

    “This is something the Career Advisory Board has been saying for years,” says Levit. “Yes, unfortunately, every resume has to be customized if you want to be taken seriously. That’s what successful job seekers are doing.”

    Hiring managers pick up a resume and are going to know, within 20 seconds, if the applicant is a good fit for the job, says Levit. That’s why it’s important to tailor/customize each resume for a specific job.

    The study also uncovered some surprising news for job seekers: Successful job seekers don’t necessarily consider job-seeking a full-time role.

    Levit said this: “I have to admit, this is counter to the advice I have always given, which has been ‘if you are in the job market and not currently employed, you should be treating your job search like a full-time job,’ meaning you are spending seven or eight hours a day on (the job search). That’s not what successful job seekers are doing.”

    The study showed that 47 percent of successful job seekers conducted job search activities a total of one to three hours a day and 45 percent spent less than an hour per day on the job search. This includes writing resumes, networking, searching for jobs, and researching companies, among other job search duties.

    “Whatever they are doing is effective and efficient,” says Levitt. “It’s not quantity, it’s quality.”

    The bottom line? Successful job seekers put together job searches that target a specific company and job, and write resumes and cover letters tailored to that specific job. They work to connect with people inside the organization for which they are applying, and doing all of this is helping them land jobs faster than those who are not conducting a specific, targeted job search.

    Watch the video to learn more about what makes a job seeker highly effective.

    For more advice for job seekers, check out our blog and follow us on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and don’t forget to subscribe to our YouTube channel.

  • Improving your writing and getting career prospects

    May 16, 2016 by
    Woman writing photo by StockUnlimited.com

    Photo by StockUnlimited.com

    You may be able to walk the talk, but can you write it?

    It’s no big secret that writing skills factor in greatly when it comes to getting and keeping a job, especially in such a competitive market. In a study conducted by Grammarly, out of 100 native English speakers’ LinkedIn profiles, those with fewer grammatical errors had more promotions and held higher positions in their respective companies.

    With this in mind, it’s no wonder writing is a crucial communication tool for those in the workforce. In order to be fully able to convey your ideas, you need to articulate them clearly to other people. Writing often serves as the medium we relate ideas with, whether sending and responding to an email or updating our resumes for future employers.

    Despite this overwhelming piece of evidence, not everyone pays attention to improving their writing. Do you want to remain stagnant in your job, or do you want to grow and get career prospects? Here are a few tips on how to become a better writer in the workforce:

    1. Be a wide reader

    You are what you read. There are numerous benefits linked to reading, and among the most notable would be improved writing skills.

    In order to be great, you need to take inspiration from those who already are. Train your brain to tune into good writing practices by reading extensively. Others’ writing styles can certainly influence your own if you read them enough. Take time to sit back with a book, a well-written blog entry, or even browse through the news at least once a day. Aside from being able to unwind after or before the stressful day ahead, you’ll also be able to acquire new knowledge.

    This tip is especially helpful if you’re in the creative industry, where creative and powerful writing is the main tool of the trade, but it can also be beneficial for simple business writing. Noting some common trends in your favorite writers like style, grammar, and tone go a long way in helping to develop your own voice. You also learn new things in the process, which you can incorporate in the other areas of your life.

    2. Read your work backwards

    It sounds silly at first, but it’s effective in weeding out any grammatical errors you’ve missed in your last work email. Give it a shot, and it could save you from an embarrassing typo.

    Our minds are programmed to autocorrect any minor errors they encounter. Remember those online tests that ask you to spot the “the” in a sentence? You may have been one of the majority who filtered out the extra “the”, in which case this second tip can come in handy to avoid any similar grammatical slip-ups.

    Start from the last word of your composition up to the first word you’ve written. Since you’re no longer operating in the context of the content, your focus stays on the form of the text. If you’re already aware of what errors you’re on the lookout for, you’ll be able to spot any repetitive words, misplaced punctuation, and faulty spacing. Note this only works on a structural level, and not if you’re looking for something else like content relevance and fact-checking.

    3. Turn spell check on

    This doesn’t necessarily improve your skill, but it’s an easy fix if you’re in a hurry to compose an error-free report you’ll be delivering to your bosses the next day. Ruby Hardman, an editor from ResumesPlanet shared: “We can’t always be on top of our writing game, and having technology on our side helps in taking some of the load off our shoulders.”

    Turn spell check on so you can automatically spot mistakes without having to painstakingly go through your work word per word. Don’t take this to mean you can let your guard down. In fact, this should give you time to focus on other aspects of your writing. If you’re writing up a resume, take the time to organize the details of it. If you’re writing a speech for a presentation, use it to focus on your tone and fine-tuning your content to the audience you’re presenting to.

    Just remember that spell check isn’t perfect, either. There will be some errors it will miss and some idioms it may misinterpret. In that case, always have a dictionary ready to counter-check the results. Sometimes you’ll still have to do the heavy lifting in refining your work, but it will all pay off with a thriving career, and improved communication between yourself and other people.

    Get on it write away!

    Writing is an often overlooked skill that plays a huge, though subtle, role in leveraging your career. In his article on Harvard Business Review, iFixit’s Kyle Wiens openly declared he wasn’t too keen on hiring people with poor grammar, precisely because they don’t make good employees. According to Wiens, these job seekers lack the critical thinking and orientation to detail that efficient workers and leaders possess.

    In order to project the right image to your employer, make sure to be on top of your writing game immediately. Read the right things to absorb some of their influence, proofread your work extensively, and if you’re in a rush, spell check is always a safe option. Just make sure to scan and countercheck for any missed marks.

    So what are you waiting for? Become a better writer, and increase your chances of moving up in your industry today.

    For more tips to improve your job search and build a career, head over to our blog and follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube.

    Paige Donahue, guest writer

    Paige Donahue, guest writer

    Paige Donahue is an editor and blogger from Pennsylvania. She is a traveler and a collector of some sort – coins, comic books, and stories. You can connect with her via Twitter.

  • 10 best websites for resume building

    April 25, 2016 by
    Resume with pen and a computer courtesy of Shutterstock.com

    maga/Shutterstock.com

    The resume writing process is perhaps the most important part of your job search. Regardless of experience level, current position, or amazing random talents, you won’t be considered for jobs unless you first create attention grabbing resumes. The following websites are fantastic places to build killer resumes that will get you noticed!

    1. CV Maker

    CV Maker lets job seekers create custom resumes online for free. The website features a wide variety of templates to choose from, as well as a super, simple interface for collecting information on experience and skills. The site is approved by The New York Times, The Huffington Post, and Mashable.

    2. Kick Resume

    Endorsed by Forbes, Business Insider, and Yahoo!, Kick Resume allows job seekers to create beautiful resumes and cover letters. All of the templates are created by designers, and the styles are colorful and attractive. The site is free with unlimited downloads.

    3. Online CV Generator

    Online CV Generator lets job seekers design their own custom resumes with an easy, step-by-step, fill in the blank questionnaire. The website claims they can create resumes in less than five minutes, but in reality it will likely take closer to 10-15 minutes, unless job seekers are recent grads with no experience to add into the algorithm.

    4. Papers Gear

    With Papers Gear, job seekers can either order custom resumes written by professional writers, or they can hire them to edit or proofread their resumes before submitting them to potential employers. The writers can also help job seekers format their resumes.

    5. Visual CV

    Visual CV is a resume creation website that lets job seekers sign in via LinkedIn. The site can import all of their data from LinkedIn, so they don’t have to go through the sometimes tedious process of adding all of their job histories. The site has a wide collection of templates to choose from. Unlike other sites, the templates are divided by profession. So, engineers will have different template recommendations than consultants.

    6. Ask Petersen Resume Writing Service

    When applying for jobs, job seekers might learn they need multiple versions of their resumes. Instead of spending valuable time rewriting resumes over and over, they could hire an essay writing service to do that for them. Ask Petersen offers up reviews of the top custom writing sites so job seekers can find the best option for their resumes.

    7. Visualize.me

    Visualize.me is very different from other resume creation websites because it allows job seekers to create infographic resumes. Instead of a boring list of accomplishments, they can create a mind map for their past.

    8. Essays Capital

    Essays Capital is a custom writing service for students and professionals. In addition to resumes, they also write essays and cover letters. Hire them to create a resume for you or to edit and format your existing resume.

    9. Represent

    Represent offers many of the same options as other resume creation websites, but it also automatically formats your resume for mobile devices as necessary. So, no matter where potential employers decide to open the file, they’ll be able to view it easily.

    10. Resume Bucket

    What makes Resume Bucket stand out from the other websites is once job seekers create their resumes, they can apply for jobs directly from the website.

    The days of fending for yourself when creating a resume are over. Today, job seekers have a plethora of resources at their fingertips. These 10 websites are wonderful places to start when they write their resumes. Be sure to choose the one that is best for your particular skill set and career path. Good luck!

    Do you need some resume help for your job search? Get a free resume critique at College Recruiter. Also, visit our blog and follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube.

    Anna Olinger, guest writer

    Anna Olinger, guest writer

    Anna Olinger is a freelance content manager from Washington, DC. For more tips on content marketing, writing, and social media, follow Anna on Twitter and Linkedin.

  • 5 resume writing tips for recent graduates

    April 09, 2016 by
    Resume writing tips written on notebook courtesy of Shutterstock.com

    kenary820/Shutterstock.com

    Irrespective of the profession, when it comes to finding a suitable job, candidates need well written resumes to present themselves as the most suitable candidates in front of prospective employers. The document provides brief information about education, skills, and prior work experience candidates may possess. It is equally important for job seekers without making any discrimination on the basis of education, skills, experiences, and the nature of the job. It is necessary for individuals searching for senior positions or entry-level vacancies.

    People have several misconceptions about resume writing, about including and excluding things, and formatting. Such misconceptions can be easily rectified after observing templates available on the web. But the real battle starts when new college graduates or individuals lacking the relevant job experience are writing resumes to brand themselves to employers. Nearly all new graduates start complaining that their resumes fail to create the right impression and are unable to help them to get a job interview call. 90% of the applicants think they are not being selected due to possessing zero or limited experience.

    Although education and level of expertise matters to get good jobs with high status and to some extent, it is also a requirement for entry-level jobs. Obviously, no one will hire job seekers with inadequate and irrelevant education. Recent graduates might be experiencing the same situation. Despite possessing the relevant education and internship experiences, if grads are experiencing the same situation, they will actually need to recheck their resumes to know what they are missing.

    Here are a few simple resume writing tips recent graduates have to keep in mind while creating their resumes to get internships or entry-level jobs in their relevant career fields.

    1. Start with your personal information

    Carefully, start by adding personal information like your full name, contact number, address, and an email address you check on a regular basis. Avoid misspelling these credentials, as they can be mistyped more frequently.

    2. Write an effective objective statement

    The career objective section is crucially important, and it should be added just after the contact credentials. In addition to placing it correctly, the objective must be very concise, covering the key components like the position you are applying for, the profession, and the most relevant skills. It enables your resume to stand out among the hundreds and thousands of resumes an employer might be sifting through.

    3. Sensibly add educational information

    Being recent graduates, the education section on their resumes is extremely important. Some candidates might not possess internship experience, and all they have are their degrees and certifications. Recruiters usually short-list candidates for entry-level and internship positions on the basis of their educational qualifications. Therefore, candidates must be very careful while adding and organizing educational information on their resumes. Start by adding the most recent degree and also mention the net GPA if it is three or more; don’t add the GPA if it is less than three. It’s better to mention the GPA of particular major if it is high enough. Don’t add unnecessary information about high school; instead, concentrate on current activities, work experiences, and accomplishments during college.

    4. Consider adding the link of your professional profile

    Although recent graduates are not classifying themselves into professional groups, they shouldn’t hesitate to create professional profiles on any of the suitable websites like LinkedIn. Grads are in the process of starting careers as professionals and should not underestimate themselves. Adding their professional profile links or portfolio links, in case they have made them during or after college, will portray a positive image of graduates’ personalities. It reveals they are eager to become professionals, and possess an innate love for specific career fields.

    5. Use action verbs over pronouns

    Don’t use first person or second person to describe yourself in a resume. Refrain using “I” or “me”. Also avoid using your name to talk about yourself in third person like “Anna is a fresh graduate” or “she is willing to join.” The best way to illustrate skills and accomplishments is using a few action verbs like created, developed, or managed under the heading of the department where someone might have worked. They give a natural tone to job seekers’ documents. Recruiters are well aware that candidates applying for entry-level jobs either don’t have work experience or that they lack the experience required to a vital job.

    After considering these simple tips and tricks, recent graduates will be able to write effective resumes to obtain desirable entry-level jobs according to their educational qualifications.

    For more resume writing tips to benefit your job search, check out College Recruiter’s blog and follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, and Twitter.

    Photo of Jenessa Baxter

    Jenessa Baxter, guest writer

    Author Bio: Jenessa Baxter is a Digital Marketer for Ultimate Recruitment Agency in Dubai. She writes about HR recruitment tips, leadership, HR management, and career consulting. Follow her on twitter @iamjenessabax

  • Preparing introverts and extroverts for the job search

    March 12, 2016 by
    Extrovert or introvert as a choice of different belief courtesy of Shutterstock.com

    kentoh/Shutterstock.com

    Introverts and extroverts handle things in very different ways. School counselors’ job is to help all of their students, and one of the best ways to do this is to know how introverts and extroverts prefer to do things. When preparing them to leave college and enter the job market, there are several things a counselor can do that will help tailor students’ paths with their personalities.

    Discover which they are

    Before school counselors begin counseling students based on their personalities, they have to determine if students are introverts or extroverts. Unless counselors have a longstanding and personal connection with students, it is probably a good idea to give them some tests to help determine their personality style. Tests — such as this one from Psychology Today — will help determine whether students are introverts or extroverts. Often students themselves are not aware of their own styles, and doing the test will be beneficial to both students and counselors.

    Inform students how their personalities can impact their jobs

    Many people do not know the difference between introverts and extroverts, and they often don’t know which category they fall into. Once school counselors have determined which one students are through some tests, they can begin telling students about what it means. Explain to students how extroverts and introverts may tackle different scenarios, and how they prefer to do things.

    Choose the right application method

    Now that both counselors and students understand the latter’s personality type, they can begin tailoring the application process for when they are looking for jobs. For example, counselors can tell extroverts that face-to-face interviews are better for them, since they are more outgoing, while introverts may be better at cover letters and resumes.

    However, some application types cannot be avoided; in this case, counselors should help students improve on things that are not necessarily their strengths. For example, here are some ways that introverts can prepare for interviews.

    In addition, school counselors can steer them towards jobs more suited to their personalities. As an example, an introvert may not be best suited for a sales position job, or one requiring a lot of group work. On the other hand, an extrovert is probably not suited for a job requiring them to work long hours alone.

    College sports male volleyball finals in Milan courtesy of Shutterstock.com

    Paolo Bona/Shutterstock.com

    Suggest outside activities

    Since a lot of college students do not have work experience they can add to their resumes, outside activities can help bolster them. Give students some options for things they can get involved with that will be suited for their personality types, along with their interests. The more activities they can get involved with, the better their resumes will look.

    Encourage them to explore outside their style

    While it is a good idea for students to play to their strengths, that does not mean they should avoid anything that makes them uncomfortable. School counselors should encourage students to keep an open mind, and to try some things not necessarily suited to their personality types. At some point along their career paths, students are probably going to do something outside their normal comfort zones, and by expanding their horizons now, they will be better equipped to handle it in the future.

    Hopefully this short list will help school counselors tailor the counseling of their students. Helping students realize what their strengths are and how they can utilize them is a great tool for after they graduate and will help guide them for years to come.

    Need more tips for your job search? Learn more at College Recruiter’s blog and follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, and Twitter.

    Photo of Tony Newton

    Tony Newton, guest writer

    Tony Newton is a contributing author for @DailyKos and @NationOfChange His favorite subjects are social awareness campaigns and public policy in pedagogy.

  • 7 resume tips for non-traditional college students

    February 16, 2016 by

    Even though the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) reports that the vast majority of today’s college students—73 percent—are categorized as non-traditional college students, or adult learners, still struggle on university and college campuses to find adequate answers to their unique problems and challenges. One of the problems and challenges non-traditional college students face is preparing a great resume prior to entering (or re-entering) the workforce after graduation.

    This 4-minute video featuring College Recruiter’s Content Manager, Bethany Wallace, provides non-traditional college students with resume tips.


    If the video is not playing or displaying properly click here.

    1) Bend the resume rules.

    Many of the standard resume tips college students find on the internet and even from career services experts are great tips, but they’re geared toward traditional college students, students who enroll in college immediately after high school graduation, attend college full-time without taking breaks in attendance, and graduate within four to five years.

    Non-traditional college students and adult learners must be prepared to adapt the resume guidelines provided for traditional students, particularly if they have several years of work experience related to their college majors. Some of the guidelines non-traditional college students may want to stray from include sticking to a one-page resume and listing education at the top of their resumes. Depending on years of experience and level of experience, these guidelines may or may not apply.

    2) Seek professional help.

    All college students benefit from resume editing assistance. However, seeking resume writing and editing assistance is even more crucial for non-traditional college students since non-traditional college students often have multiple exceptions to the typical resume rules to address and multiple questions to ask. Should I list the part-time job I held for only three months and quit when I had my daughter? Is it better to list my sales management position or not since I was laid off after three years, and I was the only person who was laid off? These are questions best answered by a professional. Seek help from career services experts on your local campuses and from College Recruiter’s free resume editors. Don’t edit your resume alone!

    3) Avoid affiliations.

    Your parents or grandparents may have advised you to avoid talking about politics and religion on first dates. The same general rule goes for resume writing. Avoid listing volunteer work and service positions which reveal religious, political, or other affiliations. Non-traditional college students often feel more grounded and sure of themselves in terms of beliefs and values; however, use caution when sharing those beliefs on your resume.

    If you insist on doing so, understand that putting your religious and political affiliations in writing on your resume may open you up to unintentional discrimination by potential employers when they review your resume during the screening process. Review the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission website; a good rule of thumb is if it’s an illegal interview question, don’t willingly offer the information to recruiters and talent acquisition professionals by listing it on your resume before you make it to the interview.

    4) Update your resume.

    If you change jobs, take on more responsibility in your current position, join a new campus or community organization, or earn an additional scholarship or award, add this information to your resume. Regardless of the changes and accomplishments in your life, set a reminder in your phone or on your calendar to update your resume every six months. For non-traditional college students, this regular resume updating is crucial because non-traditional college students typically live active lifestyles, working part-time or full-time while attending college, all the while maintaining community involvement and tending to family responsibilities.

    Think of a resume as a working document. You should never create your resume and then file it away. Always be prepared to email an updated copy to a recruiter or potential employer on a moment’s notice. You never know when someone in your social network may hear of a great job opening and think of you.

    5) Tend to details.

    Countless human resources managers and recruiters have passed over resumes with spelling errors, grammatical errors, and mechanical errors. Use past tense to describe prior jobs and present tense to describe your current position. Use spell check and grammar check. Take advantage of College Recruiter’s free resume editors. Visit the career services office on your campus. Ensure proper spelling of all job titles and companies listed on your resume. Do not misspell your own references’ names. These are small details, but details matter. Employers want to hire professionals who can handle making important daily decisions for their companies; submitting a seamless resume is the first step in proving you’re qualified to make big decisions. Remember, seek resume editing assistance.

    6) Address gaps.

    Non-traditional college students often have gaps in their work history. When you have gaps in your work history, you may choose whether to list them or not. If you don’t list the gaps on your resume, be prepared to explain those gaps in your work experience in your interviews and/or cover letters. If you list the gaps on your resume, list transferable skills and volunteer duties performed.

    For example, if you took three years off from working full-time to stay at home with your child, and during that time you worked in the nursery at your church, volunteered during vacation Bible school, and babysat two other small children one day each week, you can list in-home childcare for three children for three years, volunteer teaching experience for 12 toddlers for a non-profit organization during each summer for three years, and volunteer childcare worker one day per week for 2-10 children. This experience might not feel substantial to you, but it demonstrates that you were involved in your community, managed others, planned lessons, taught skills and material to small children, and a variety of other tasks which you can list as transferable skills on your resume.

    7) List all experience.

    Entitle your work experience section “Experience.” This allows you the freedom to list all experience in this category, including your military experience, volunteer work experience, internships (paid or unpaid), and paid work experience. Whether you value your volunteer experience as highly as your paid work experience or not, many employers will. Don’t underestimate the value of your own experience.

    For more career tips, follow our blog and our YouTube channel, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn pages.

     

  • Multitasking doesn’t matter to recruiters

    February 11, 2016 by

    In college recruiting, employers don’t value multitasking as one of the skills at the top of their list. While multitasking may demonstrate effort, it does not necessarily produce the best results. Many students list multitasking on their resumes because multitasking is a popular soft skill candidates have been taught to list on their resumes. The bottom line is recruiters want to hire candidates who produce results.

    Anne Grinols, Assistant Dean for Faculty Development and College Initiatives at Baylor’s Hankamer School of Business, asserts that employers care more about hiring candidates who have outlined their accomplishments in detail on their resumes over candidates who have simply listed lots of popular soft skills at the top of their resumes.

    Photo of Anne Grinols

    Anne Grinols, Assistant Dean for Faculty Development and College Initiatives at Baylor’s Hankamer School of Business

    “Job candidates who say they can multitask think they are saying they can accomplish more than others because they can focus on more than one thing at once. However, multitasking can also be seen as a negative. I think this is because efforts to multitask have had unfortunate results: poor outcomes and burnout of those trying to do it for extended periods of time.

    In the real world, most of the time, results count more than the process to achieve them. A good process is more likely to result in consistent, good results; so process matters. But it matters precisely because of the results, not on its own account.

    Employers are more interested in outcomes than efforts. Multitasking refers to the latter. I would not use the term ‘multitasking’ on my resume. Instead, I would indicate expertise in multiple areas, timely production and excellence in outcomes.”

    Looking for more resume tips? Visit College Recruiter’s blog and follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, and Twitter.

    Anne Grinols serves as Assistant Dean for Faculty Development and College Initiatives in Baylor’s Hankamer School of Business. She teaches in Baylor’s full-time and online MBA programs. Her research areas include interpersonal communication, ethics, and online education. As assistant dean, she supports faculty development in teaching and research, and has a leadership role in the ethics initiatives in the business school. Before coming to Baylor in January 2004, Grinols was director of management communication for the University of Illinois Business School, where she taught management communication and critical thinking for business from 1996-2003 and oversaw the MBA Communication Center.

  • Creating a reference page for your resume

    February 02, 2016 by

    The job search involves multiple steps. One of the first steps involved is creating a reference page. The step prior to this is writing a basic resume. You will edit, tailor, and tweak your resume each time you apply for specific positions. Next you’ll want to create a separate reference page.

    How do you select people to serve as references? How do you create and maintain a reference page?

    Check out College Recruiter’s four-minute video about creating a reference page for your resume.


    If the video is not playing or displaying properly click here.

    1. Create a separate reference page

    Be sure to indicate to potential employers who will review your resume that you have a reference page available. At the bottom of your resume, type “references available upon request.” Creating a separate reference page is helpful for a few reasons. It saves space on your resume, and when employers choose to pursue you further in the hiring process and want to check references, they must contact you to obtain a copy of your references. This allows you time to quickly call or email your references; your references are then better prepared to provide positive, clear answers about your qualifications for employment.

    Type your reference page using the same font and format as your resume; you want to ensure that employers easily recognize that your reference page matches up with your resume if the two pages become separated. For this reason, you’ll also want to include the same or similar header at the top of your reference page listing your contact information (name, address, phone number, and email address).

    2. Ask first

    Always ask people before listing them as references; when people are prepared for reference checks, they can provide glowing reviews of you without feeling flustered. They are also more likely to serve as a reference in the future if you treat them with courtesy and respect by asking for permission to list them as references on the front end.

    3. Hesitation means no

    If people hesitate to say yes when you ask for permission to list them as references, do not list them as references, even if they eventually give you permission. There’s some reason for their hesitation. You don’t want to take any chances on one of your references giving you anything less than a stellar review; there are many times when employers checking references pick up on tone of voice or implied hints dropped by references over the phone or even in emails. Don’t let one bad reference check cause you to miss out on a great job opportunity. Move on and ask someone else to serve as a reference for you.

    4. Go above and beyond

    Employee Reference Check Form courtesy of Shutterstock.com

    Sinseeho/Shutterstock.com

    Try to provide more than the minimum number of references required. Most employers request at least three references; list five to seven instead. When human resources professionals, hiring managers, or recruiters check your references and need quick responses, this provides them with more than enough people to call or email, and if they don’t hear back from the first three people on the list, they can call one or two of your other references instead.

    5. Provide variety

    When selecting your references, provide potential employers with variety. Think about offering recruiters a broad overview of your qualifications, including your work history, educational background, and volunteer and extracurricular involvement. Include references like coworkers, supervisors, former professors, students you partnered with on major projects, fellow volunteers, directors of non-profit organizations who managed fundraisers you participated in, etc. The longer the relationship you’ve had with your references, the better; one of the questions employers might ask of your references is how long they have known you.

    6. Clear communicators

    Select references who will not only speak highly of you but who will also speak clearly and concisely about you, and preferably in an upbeat manner. Your favorite former college professor might be the nicest guy in the world, but if he’s extremely soft-spoken and stammers most of the time, you might consider finding another former professor to ask to serve as a reference. Remember that about 80% of employers check references, with about 16% checking references prior to the interview. Be sure you select references who will serve as cheerleaders for you prior to your arrival at the interview.

    7. Titles don’t always impress

    Avoid listing references simply because their job titles look impressive on your reference page; instead think about what your references will have to say about you. Can they provide real, concrete examples about the ways you’ve demonstrated your skills and abilities? If not, why are you listing them on your reference page? Remember that recruiters and hiring managers want to know if you’re a good fit for the open position. If your references can’t provide information to reassure employers that you’re the best candidate for the job opening, find references who can. Be sure your references know the real you.

    8. Maintain and update

    Keep your reference page updated with current contact information. Don’t make it tough on employers to check your references; they might give up if they run into snags when checking your references and move on to the next candidate in line for the job.

    9. Say thanks

    Lastly, be sure to thank your references each time you obtain an interview or land a job. You never know the difference your references’ reviews can make in your job search. Your references serve as part of your network of supporters, and maintaining positive connections with your network always pays off.

    For more Tuesday Tips and job search secrets, follow College Recruiter’s blog and follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube.

     

  • Resume 101: 5 tips for writing your first resume

    January 19, 2016 by

    Writing your first resume may overwhelm you.

    Don’t let it. College Recruiter is here to help with a brief video providing five basic resume writing tips for college students and recent college graduates.

     

    If the video is not playing or displaying properly click here.

     

    1. Keep a running list.

    Prior to writing your first resume (beginning the minute you step foot on campus during your first year of college, ideally), it’s helpful to keep a running list of what you’re up to—on-campus involvement (sorority and fraternity involvement, clubs, etc.), work experience, scholarships and awards earned, and volunteer activities. Take note of titles of scholarships, companies, managers, and organizations. It’s easy to forget these details when you sit down to compose your first resume, but if you’ve been maintaining a running list, you’ll have it all on hand.

    You can keep this running list in whatever format suits your style—Microsoft Word document, a journal, or audio files. Just be sure these notes are kept in a place where they can be easily retrieved when you are ready to write your first resume.

    2. Avoid templates.

    Resume templates—both those you pay for and those you download at no cost—often look appealing and impressive at first glance.

    However, resume templates can create snags for you when you begin to edit your resume later. Templates also contain formatting which is troublesome for Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS); almost all corporations utilize ATS’s when resumes are submitted online. In addition, you might think the template you select will set your resume apart from others, but if it’s available for purchase or for free online, chances are that lots of other job applicants have formatted their resumes using the same template in the past.

    3. Ask for help.

    If you haven’t already done so, schedule a resume writing appointment with your career services office on campus. The professionals in your career services department want to help you succeed in finding your first full-time job or internship, and creating a basic resume is an essential part of that process. When you show up for your appointment, take your running list (tip #1) with you as well as copies of job descriptions you’ve held in the past if you have those on hand (tip #4).

    College Recruiter also offers college students and recent grads a free resume editing service. After drafting your resume, submit it to us for feedback as well.

    4. Retain copies of job descriptions to help you write accomplishment statements.

    Each time you obtain a job, even if it’s a part-time job or an unpaid volunteer position, retain a copy of the job description. The best time to ask for and obtain copies of job descriptions is during the hiring process, but if you forgot to ask for them, you can almost always find copies on company websites.

    Andrey Bondarets/Shutterstock.com

    Andrey Bondarets/Shutterstock.com

    Job descriptions list job duties. Job duties morph into accomplishment statements on your resume. What are accomplishment statements? Accomplishment statements are bulleted statements listed on your resume beneath each job title that quantify and qualify your efforts and demonstrate to your future employers that you’re the right person to hire. Accomplishment statements answer the questions, “How much?” and “How many?”

    Most students—and even professionals—need help when wording their accomplishment statements, so be sure to seek assistance from your career services professionals and from College Recruiter’s resume editors when working to tweak the accomplishment statements on your resume.

    5. Tailor your basic resume when applying for jobs.

    Once you’ve created a basic resume, you’re ready to move forward and begin applying for job openings. It’s always a good idea, though, to tailor your basic resume to better match the positions you’re applying for. Analyze the job description for the open position you’re applying for, looking for terms describing technical skills or job duties specific to that role—which  keywords stand out? Be sure to fit those keywords into your tailored resume if you possess those skills; your resume will stand out from others the more closely your qualifications match the employer’s specifications.

    Crafting a concise basic resume is the first step to success on your job search journey.

    Learn more about connecting the dots to career success by following College Recruiter’s blog. Follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter, too.