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Don’t Ask the Wrong Question when Job Searching

July 10, 2017

WRONG QUESTION: “Do you know of any job openings”? OR “Who’s hiring?”

• This might seem obvious to ask, but it can actually hurt your networking (which is the most effective job search method and how over 80% of job searchers find work).
• In working with my resume clients at channingresumes.com, I tell them that once they have completed their resume, the next step is to know how to effectively look for their next position. In my 20+ years of career coaching, this is the number one struggle for those in transition. Most people do not job search effectively, thus making their search last much longer than it needs to be.
• Statistics show that only 10-20% of all jobs are ever posted in a job bank AND of all the jobs posted, less than 5% are filled from all job boards combined!! These statistics mean up to 90% of all opportunities remain in the Hidden Job Market, meaning unadvertised openings.
• What I tell all my clients is that “most jobs you can do tomorrow are walking around inside managers’ heads.” So, I would never tell someone not to use online job boards, but you want to spend most of your time doing proactive job searching (networking), rather than reactive job searching (only reacting to job postings).

RIGHT QUESTION: “Who do you know who would manage someone with my skills?”

• Once you have determined places you want to work and located contacts that could connect you to those companies, your next step should be trying to get your resume in the hands of the person who would hire you (whether they are officially hiring or not).
• It is not important for your contact to know whether the manager they’re referring you to is hiring right now because frankly only the manager knows their short and long-term needs.
• Get the manager’s name, get an introduction and introduce yourself to them. Your statement can be a simple, “I understand you have people with my kind of background and skills working for you. I don’t assume to know if you have job openings, but I would like to meet you and learn more about the type of people you like to have on your team and share with you a bit about my background.”
• OR when sending your resume, tell the manager that you are targeting their company as a place you would like to work and ask if they have any current or future needs for someone with your skills and experience.
• Please reach out to channingresumes.com if you need help with writing a professional resume.

The more you ask the right questions, the more pleasantly surprised you will be with the results.


6 THINGS NOT TO INCLUDE ON YOUR RESUME

May 30, 2017

As a resume writer, I often tell clients: “It’s important to also consider what NOT to include on your resume,” some things can do more harm than good…

Answer:

  •   Summary statement that is unclear and unfocused: The reader should be clear on what type of position you are targeting and why you would be good a candidate for that position (including hard and soft skills).

  •   Regurgitation of your job description: Along with what you did day to day (like answer phones and email), it’s just as important (if not more) to summarize what you accomplished over time (like increased customer satisfaction 20%).

  •   Large blocks of text: Resumes are read extremely quickly (an average of 10-30 seconds) so your goal is to make yours as easy to skim as possible. That means keeping your text short and sweet, and in bullet points, not block text.

  •   Personal details: Since it’s illegal for employers to consider this when looking at your application (at least in the U.S.), they can’t request it (and offering it makes you look like you are not aware of that and can be used against you).

  •   Too many pages: Your resume will get under a minute of your reader’s attention. Make sure you include enough accomplishment-based information but not so much that your accomplishments get lost in the data and the reader stops reading. If you have under 7 years of professional experience, try to keep your resume to 1 page. If over that, try not to go over 2 pages.

  •   Typos: Don’t rely on spell check and grammar check alone—ask family or friends to take a look at it for you.

 

If you would like a FREE RESUME REVIEW or assistance in developing your next resume, click here to begin working on your resume.


Your Resume Should Not Be a “One-Size-Fits-All Document”

September 6, 2016

Often clients I work with at www.channingresumes.com will tell me “I want to use my resume to target many types of positions”.  The problem with this is that you will present to a prospective employer that you are unfocused in your job search.  There is nothing wrong with “staying open to many possibilities” or job searching for more than 1 career target (many job searchers do that), however if the targets are quite different you will want to consider modifying your resume for each career option.

The reason for this is, even though you might not be sure which career option you want to take at the moment, the employers reading your resume want to feel that you are invested in doing the position they are offering.  Employers do not want to interview people who are “keeping their options open” or “considering numerous possibilities”,  they want to interview people who are interested in doing the job they will be offering.  You want to be sure your resume and cover letter coveys this and doesn’t leave an employer in question.

Finally, don’t expect an employer to do the work of reading through your resume to see what you might have to offer in that position. Do the work for them! Everything on your resume should relate to the position in descending order of importance, starting with a strong summary statement that tells about the most important pieces of information about your qualifications for the position.  

If you’re thinking, “That’s a lot of work!” you are right. But if you don’t invest the time showcasing your relevant skills and experience, the employer is not going to take the time to consider you as a serious candidate for a position.

If you would like assistance in writing your resume and would like more information on Channing Resumes, Click here to begin working on updating your resume.


WHAT HAPPENED TO THE OBJECTIVE STATEMENT ON MY RESUME?

July 19, 2016

This question is often asked of me when developing client resumes at www.channingresumes.com as headlines are now the first line on a resume rather than an objective statement.

Answer:

  •   Some time ago, an objective statement was a standard component on every resume.  Typically the first line of a resume would state something like:  OBJECTIVE: “To obtain a position in accounting where I can utilize my skills at an organization that facilitates growth.” 

  •   Over the last decade resumes have changed and we now have very little time to catch the reader’s attention.  Some statistics state the typical resume is read under 20 seconds.

  •   In this short time, the reader needs to see that you will add value to the organization.  If nothing jumps out at them, it’s likely to be lost in the black hole of resumes. Starting with a generic objective doesn’t excite anyone, but a compelling headline creates a hook that draws the reader in

  •   A well-positioned summary will inherently communicate your objective along with your expertise, strengths and value you can add to the organization, therefore a separate objective statement is not needed. A good headline emphasizes what the applicant has to offer by specifying a main core competency relevant to the intended position. 

  •   Here are 2 examples of powerful resume headlines:

RESULTS-ORIENTED ADMINISTRATIVE PROFESSIONAL
Identify challenges and develop improved processes 

Customer-Centric Technical | Desktop | Production Support
Recognized for preventing disruption of business by proactively identifying issues 

If you would like assistance in developing your next resume,  
click here to begin working on updating your resume.


What does it mean to have an ageless resume?

June 6, 2016

As I write resumes for www.channingresumes.com, I am often asked the question: “what can I do to take the reader’s focus away from my age?” If you are over 50 and concerned that you are being screened out because of your age, a good solution is creating an “ageless resume”. The language, format and content you include in your resume can date you. There are some tips to reflecting your qualifications for a position without revealing your age. Here are some things to consider:

  • Education graduation dates are not required on resumes so you can eliminate them.

  • Remove the mention of tenure in your summary statement. Often resumes begin with the first line of a summary stating “over 20 years of experience...” I recommend highlighting your talent and results rather than your years of experience. You can say “Comprehensive background in the manufacturing industry”….

  • Limit the dated work experience to the most recent 15 years (which to employers is the best predictor of how you will perform in the future). You can still include older work experience (if you feel that will enhance your marketing yourself), but I suggest creating another section on your resume called “Additional Experience” and omit dates in this section.

  • Use current terminology and language on your resume.

  • Include professional development details. If you have updated your skills regularly and/or have completed certification in your industry or functional area, include them to demonstrate you are a lifelong learner.

  • By following these tips, you can reduce the risk against age discrimination. Choosing the right information and terminology will demonstrate to hiring mangers that you are a valuable job candidate and the best person for the job.

If you would like assistance in developing your next resume, click here to begin working on updating your resume.


What's the Hidden Job Market?

March 7, 2016

Once you have completed your resume, your next step is to know how to effectively look for your next position.  In my 20+ years of career coaching, this is the number one struggle for those in transition.  Most people do not job search effectively, thus making their search last much longer than it needs to be.  

Bottom line, as a job seeker, you need to spend your time doing what makes a difference! Statistics show that only 10-20% of all jobs are ever posted in a job bank, and of the jobs posted, less than 5% are filled from all job boards combined! These statistics mean 80-90% of all opportunities remain in the hidden job market, meaning unadvertised openings. What I tell all my clients is that “most jobs you can do tomorrow are walking around inside Managers’ heads”.  So, I would never tell someone not to use online job boards, but you want to spend most of your time doing proactive job searching, rather than reactive job searching (only reacting to job postings).  

A proactive job search looks like this:

  1. Ask yourself, “Where do I want to work?” or “Who would hire someone with my skills?” and then make a list of employers in your geographic area who hire for those positions.
  2. Don’t worry about whether you see job postings for the positions you are targeting (as most jobs are never advertised), instead, spend your time trying to get your resume in the hands of the person who would hire you.
  3. In order to do this, write everyone you know and tell them the companies you are targeting.
  4. Use LinkedIn and search for 1st, 2nd or 3rd degree contacts you have that work at the companies you are targeting.
  5. If you are a member of a professional association, obtain the membership directory and search for contacts at the companies you are targeting.
  6. Never ask, “Do you know if your company is hiring?” (as that is like asking “if they know what’s inside their Manager’s head”). Instead, ask if they can assist you in sending along your resume to the Manager of the department where you would like work. 
  7. When sending your resume, tell the Manager you are targeting their company as a place you would like to work and ask if they have any current or future needs for someone with your skills and experience. Please reach out to us if you need help with writing a professional resume. 
  8. The more you do this, the more pleasantly surprised you will be with the results.

3 Reasons to Update Your Resume When You Are Not Looking For Work

January 20, 2016
Savvy professionals keep their resumes updated whether or not they are contemplating a career move. There are several reasons to do this, including:

  1. Leads / requests from colleagues and friends: since most positions are filled this way, you may hear about a potential opening at a company-out of the blue-when this happens, you should be ready to market yourself.

  2. Possibility of promotion: many companies like to promote from within rather than hiring from outside the organization. Because your company’s executives and HR professionals are not always aware of your accomplishments, you need to make sure they become aware of them if you want to be considered for promotion.

  3. Calls from a recruiter / headhunter: if you get a call from a recruiter telling you about an opportunity that interests you, are you ready to send your resume immediately or will you need time to update it? If the economy suddenly sours and you are let go, will you be ready to immediately start your job search with an updated resume?

What to Include In Updating Your Resume

Whether you write your resume yourself or have it written professionally, there are a few things you need to do to make updating it fairly easy. Keep a file just for that purpose. What should be in it?

  • If you receive an oral or written commendation, file it.

  • If you lead or participate in a project, keep a description of the project and your part in it in your file.

  • If you initiate a process improvement, make changes that increase efficiency or decrease costs, put that information in your file.

  • If you take a relevant course or workshop, include it; be sure to jot down the exact name of the course, the provider, and the date you completed it.

  • If you are promoted, include the date of promotion, a job description, and why you were promoted. Be sure to include the challenges of each promotion, the actions you took, and the results.

    It’s so easy to forget what you have accomplished, and you’ll be glad later that you took the time to do it. So be prepared for the unexpected, you never know what’s around the corner!

If you would like assistance in developing your next resume, click here to begin working on updating your resume.

6 Reasons to Update Your Resume for the Holidays

November 15, 2015

Many people shut down their job search from mid-November till January based on an unproven theory that no one is interviewed or hired during the holidays. 

Here are 6 things to consider:

  1. During these months, employers hire to meet special holiday demands, to meet year-end business and financial goals, to fill budgeted positions for the current year, and to prepare for the new year – plus, there can be regular hiring, like replacing someone who has resigned.

  2. If your friends and extended family don't know that you are looking for a job, casually fill them in at holiday events. The connections that lead to jobs happen in the unlikeliest places.

  3. The holidays are a great reason to get back in touch with a former boss or co-workers, college friends, people in the neighborhood, your kid's soccer coach, etc. and let them know that you are considering a change.

  4. Job searching during the holidays, keeps you well-positioned when the traditional January 2nd job market expansion begins.  You will be actively engaged while others are just beginning or re-starting their job search.

  5. Many companies have their next year budgets and projects in place and are recruiting people to start work in January. Looking in January is too late for jobs at these companies.

  6. Fewer job seekers try to find jobs during this period, so competition is not as intense. You will have an easier time standing out from the crowd NOW.

    So don't take the holidays off completely. Stay focused on your job search, and you'll increase your chances of landing that next job while others aren’t even paying attention! 

    If you would like assistance in developing your next resume, click here to begin working on updating your resume.


4 Tips to Writing Effective Accomplishment Bullets

November 6, 2015

Employers will want to see proof of the claims you make about yourself in your cover letter and resume summary statement.  They should be able to find this proof within your specific (and non-generic) accomplishment bullet points. Instead of focusing on general duties and responsibilities, the resume should show what you did well and the impact your actions had on the department or organization. 

4 Tips to Consider:

  1. Use Verbs: Start with a past tense action verb. Words like “did” or “worked” or phrases such as “duties included” or “responsible for” are not nearly as impressive (as they suggest a passive attitude). Instead, use words such as “improved, initiated, developed, and reduced”.

  2. Be Specific: Give an example of a specific time when you did something well. Rather than listing all of your responsibilities, focus instead on what made you good at your job. Did a change you made have a positive impact? What difference did you make? Did you have a reputation for being a problem solver or people person?

  3. Convey the Impact or Results: Tell the reader about the outcome of your actions, including metrics when possible. Powerful accomplishments are expressed with strong actions and measurable/beneficial results. They can be presented as: "Action leading to Result" or "Result by taking Action."

  4. Ask yourself lots of questions: If you are having a hard time determining your impact, ask yourself, “What would have happened if I didn’t do this or didn’t do it well”---often the answer of your impact lies in the answer to that question. Other questions you can ask yourself are:  “did I make a process faster, implement a new procedure or system, and solve a problem in my group, save the company money.”

    If you would like assistance in writing your resume and would like more information on www.channingresumes.com, click here to begin working on updating your resume

4 things you might want to evaluate on your resume.

October 20, 2015
  1. Acronyms and company jargon: Be sure the readers of your resume will understand all the acronyms and jargon you use in your resume.  There is a good chance that employers in your field understand some terms on your resume, just BE SURE this is the case.  Spell out acronyms you think could be questionable as well as explain terms that you think some readers might not understand (for example terms that were “company specific” to the your past employers).

  2. Articles and unnecessary words: Those little words "a," "an," and "the." Generally speaking, resumes aren't written in sentence form, but in concise phrases that have become an accepted shorthand that employers understand. Articles tend to clutter up that shorthand; your resume will read in a more streamlined manner without them.

  3. City/state of employers: Be sure to list locations (city and state) for all your past employers. It's resume protocol to do so, and employers expect to see that information.

  4. Redundancy: While job seekers want to show the extent of their experience in various areas, repeating the same information several times throughout a resume can quickly become a turn off.

    If you would like assistance in writing your accomplishment-based resume and would like more information on www.channingresumes.com, click here to begin working on updating your resume

Helpful tips when writing resume accomplishment statements.

October 15, 2015

Hiring managers seek candidates that can help them solve a problem or satisfy a need within their company. It is important to show how you solved similar problems in other companies and situations. A resume is a marketing document designed to sell your skills and strengths rather than just portray a bio of the candidate.

  • Focus on what you did in the job, NOT just what your job was, there's a difference.

  • For each position, include a short job description first, then list your accomplishments as bullet points.

  • For each point ask yourself: “What was the benefit of having done what I did”?

  • Accomplishments should be unique to you, not just a list of what someone else did.

  • When possible, quantify your achievements to ensure greater confidence in the hiring manager and thereby generate interest percentages, dollars, number of employees, etc.

  • Work backwards to quantify your accomplishments by asking, “If I had not done X, what could have happened”?

If you would like assistance in writing your accomplishment-based resume and would like more information on www.channingresumes.com, click here to begin working on updating your resume



2 Things to Consider When Emailing Your Resume

September 7, 2015

1. When you email your resume to a prospective employer, in addition to emailing a .doc version of your resume, consider copying and pasting your text (.txt) version directly into the body of the email.  Some employers may not open attachments (especially from people they don’t know) due to virus threats.  By including the text version of your resume, in the body of the email, it can be easily loaded into an employer’s database.

2. Often job seekers like to send .pdf versions of their resume.  There are some things you want to consider when you do this.  Not all employers want to accept the .pdf format and may not be able to open a PDF file without having Adobe Acrobat software.  Finally a .pdf cannot be scanned for key words without first being converted to a .txt document which needs certain type of software in order to be done.

These 2 points will assist you in minimizing the chances of your resume being ignored due to technical complications.

If you would like assistance in writing your resume and would like more information on www.channingresumes.com, click here to begin working on updating your resume

3 Questions Job Seekers Ask About Cover Letters

August 23, 2015

           1. Do employers really read cover letters?

           Yes and No…

  • Cover letters enable screeners to quickly qualify candidates, so yes, many employers do read cover letters and some will not consider an application without one.

  • Some employers report only reading resumes and not cover letters, since you don’t know which employers they are, it’s always recommended to craft a cover letter.

  • Recruiters and employers have indicated that a lack of cover letter indicates the candidate did not take the extra time to consider a tailored introduction.

  • So, unless specifically instructed to not send a cover letter, be sure to prepare a concise point-by-point match of your qualifications with their stated requirements.

  • Cover letters offer another opportunity to have your resume pass the screening and move to the "yes, interview" pile.

     2. What makes an effective cover letter?

  • Your cover letter is often your first introduction to the employer, so focus on the employer’s needs.

  • You should specifically demonstrate your fit to the position. To do this, carefully analyze the posting and research the company.

  • Typically a cover letter has 3 sections or paragraphs:

    • First: Introduction and state why you are writing.

    • Second: state why you would make a good candidate for the position (done in a bulleted fashion).

    • Third: Ask to be considered for an interview.

      3. Can I create one cover letter that I can use for every submission of my resume?

  • Yes and No….

  • Yes, you can draft 1 basic cover letter that serves as a template to highlight how your experience and accomplishments match with the general types of positions you are seeking.

  • But no, you should not use that exact letter for all applications. Each letter should make a personal connection with the reader and feature a point-by-point match of your experience and strengths as it relates to what the company is seeking.

    If you would like assistance in writing your cover letters or resume and would like more information on www.channingresumes.com, click here to begin working on updating your resume.

2 things you need to understand when developing an effective resume

August 10, 2015

2 keys to writing an effective resume are:

  1. Understanding your own skills and strengths

  2. Understanding the position you are targeting.

  • To develop an effective resume you need to learn more about your target position.  You can do this by researching the current market and asking yourself: What are the main qualifications employers are seeking for my target position?

  • One of the best ways to identify the qualifications/criteria for your target position is to gather and analyze current job postings and job descriptions. Job boards are useful resources of identifying ads. 

  • Begin by analyzing up to 10 ads to gather the common requirements being sought by employers for your target position.  Once you have completed your research, you will know which of your qualifications to showcase on your resume. 

    Guidelines to keep in mind as you create your resume:

  • Keep the look simple! (Resumes get a 25-35 second scan.)

  • Limit the length to 2 pages, as often as possible.

  • Make your point quickly.

  • Don't use personal pronouns (I, me, my…).

  • Use the same font type throughout the whole document.

  • Express former position information in past tense.

  • Check and re-check for spelling, punctuation, wording and accuracy.

  • Use neutral-colored paper (white, cream, light beige, light gray).

  • Your resume should be clear, direct, professional and easy to read.

If you would like assistance in writing your resume and would like more information on www.channingresumes.com, click here to begin working on updating your resume.

Why should I send a thank you note after an interview?

June 15, 2015

I often have this question asked of me as a formatted thank you letter is included in www.channingresumes.com resume package.  A thank you note is often referred to as the most neglected step in the job search process but can serve 2 purposes:

  1. Sending a thank-you is just good business courtesy.

  2. It is your opportunity to solidify your candidacy. The major components of this correspondence are:

    1. Express continued interest and enthusiasm for the position.

    2. Confirm or re-state the most important contribution you expect to make.

    3. Present any important points that were missed in the interview.

    4. State that you will stay in touch

The correspondence should be carefully considered and crafted and it should be no longer than 1 page.  Other things to keep in mind:

  • Use paragraphs and bullets to highlight key qualifications that you remember the interviewer saying were important for THEIR needs.

  • You can bring up something you forgot to mention or address a concern, but be careful not to focus on negative aspects or gaps of your candidacy.

  • Close with thanks and by expressing interest again and willingness to follow up.

If you would like assistance in writing your resume and would like more information on www.channingresumes.com, click here to begin working on updating your resume.


How many resumes do you recommend I have? When would I need more than one?

May 3, 2015

When writing resumes for www.channingresumes.com, I often have this question asked of me.  Here are some points to keep in mind to answer this question:

  • Consider the number of "different" types of positions you are targeting. If you are only targeting one type of position, then you really only need 1 main resume geared towards that target. You may make minor tweaks to it (for instance adding in keywords from a specific ad you are responding to, or changing the order of accomplishments).

  • However, you should consider 2 resumes when you are pursuing 2 very different options, for example, a technical role vs. a project management role.

  • The reason for this is your resume is primarily a marketing document to sell you for a particular position.  If the 2 options are very different then you would highlight different things on each resume.

  • NOTE: You want to avoid situations where the same employer receives 2 versions of your resume and questions your commitment to a specific function or industry.

    If you would like assistance in writing your resume and would like more information on www.channingresumes.com, click here to begin working on updating your resume.

What about personal details on your resume?

February 27, 2015

       Email address:

  • Think twice about using your work email address.  Do you really want a prospective employer to know you are job searching on your current employer’s time or email server?

  • Often job seekers will set up an email account (i.e. Gmail) and use it just for job searching.  Just make sure you check it regularly and your address sounds professional. 

    Phone number:

    It’s recommended to have just one phone number on your resume.  Keep in mind these 2 points:

  • Make sure it’s a number that has a professional sounding voicemail.  Although it’s very cute to have your little child leave the voicemail message…it’s not recommended for job searching to have a prospective employer call that number.

  • Ensure you will be getting all messages from that number.  If you have your home number on your resume, ask yourself “whoever answers this phone, can I ensure they will pass along the message to me?”  If not, consider using your cell phone.

    Hobbies and “Extra-Curricular” interests

  • Unless they are related to the positions you are targeting, it’s best to leave these hobbies off your resume.

  • Your birthdate, marital status, number of children you have or religion:   Since it’s illegal for employers to consider this when looking at your resume, they cannot request this information, so offering it makes you look a little clueless.

If you would like assistance in writing your resume and would like more information on www.channingresumes.com, click here to begin working on updating your resume.

Why should you include the URL to your LinkedIn profile on your resume?

February 2, 2015

When writing resumes for www.channingresumes.com I suggest to clients to include their LinkedIn URL within the header of their resume.

  • LinkedIn allows you to create an online profile that summarizes the content of your resume. After completing your resume, simply choose the key elements from it that you wish to include in your profile.   Include your LinkedIn URL in the header of your resume to direct employers to view your profile (often people put it under their email address).

  • Online networking sites are becoming increasingly popular tools for employers and recruiters to find information about potential candidates. As high as 83% check online networking sites before hiring an individual.

  • Including your URL on a resume can send a positive message but providing the link before you establish your consistent online brand might send the wrong message.  Before including your LinkedIn URL, make sure your profile is nearly complete and includes a couple of recommendations.

  • You find your LinkedIn URL right under your picture on your profile and can customize your URL and eliminate the string of numbers and letters.  Log in to LinkedIn and select Profile / View Profile to find edit options.

If you would like assistance in writing your resume and would like more information on www.channingresumes.com, click here to begin working on updating your resume.


What does it mean to have an "Accomplishment - Based Resume"?

Your resume should begin with a summary statement, which highlights your key qualifications, then throughout your resume you need to “back up” what your summary is saying about yourself. 

  • This is done through accomplishment statements within your professional experience. While many resumes state “this is what I did” or “these were the responsibilities I had”, an accomplishment-based resume will emphasize “this is how I did it well and the results/impact I had”, thus emphasizing your commitment to benefit your employer. 

  • Powerful accomplishments are expressed with strong actions and measurable/beneficial results. They can be presented as: "Action leading to Result" or "Result by taking Action."

    Some examples:

  • Reduced downtime and increased order processing 20% by designing and implementing preventative maintenance program.

  • Initiated cost reduction program that saved $2.7M within first 2 years of implementation.

  • Designed and installed new product line conveyor system within an 11-week deadline, on time and under budget by 10%.

    The general guideline for the number of accomplishments to include on your resume is at least one per year of employment presented.

    If you would like assistance in writing your resume and would like more information on www.channingresumes.com, click here to begin working on updating your resume.

What if your New Year's resolution is to get another job?

December 30, 2014

You need to have a resume that stands out from other applicants.  There's a lot of competition, so you want to make sure you have the upper hand.

Here's how you can make your resume unique to showcase your skills and increase your chances for being called for an interview:

1. Make it Easy to Read

Knowing how to do a resume means writing it clearly and ensuring there are no errors. Avoid adding a lot of fluff. Since there are so many resumes, recruiters will quickly look over resumes, picking out the best candidates.

2. Go beyond Job Descriptions

Recruiters don't just want to see what your previous duties were. Chances are, they probably already know what your responsibilities were for your previous job. They're more interested in how you made an impact; the difference you made and how your work ethic stood out.

3. Don't Just State Your Objective

Don't use an objective that can be used as a default station put on a resume. Instead, take the approach of a professional profile. Let the employer know what qualifications, values, and experience you can bring to their company and how it can be beneficial to their foundation.

4. Stick to Pertinent Information

Keep everything professional. Avoid discussing your hobbies or anything that doesn't relate to the position of which you're hiring for. Stay on point with career facts and skill sets.

5. Add Social Media Profiles

Adding social media profiles allows recruiters to see exactly how you showcase your expertise on a massive scale. Interacting with the public and growing in large networks can be a huge addition to your resume.  Additionally, it gives recruiters an alternative way to get a hold of you.

6. Always Include a Cover Letter

Most recruiters refuse to even look at a resume if it's not accompanied by a cover letter. This provides a very personal, professional addition to your resume. It allows recruiters to learn more about your career, experience, and effort to obtaining a job at their company. Even if it's not asked for, write one anyway.

If you would like assistance developing your resume, click below for:

Why you should update your resume for the holidays

October 29, 2014

When I work with people at www.channingresumes.com who are considering a career or job change during this time of year, they often say they will wait till January to start the process, you might want to think again. Many people shut down their job search from mid-November till January based on an unproven theory that no one is interviewed or hired during the holidays.  Here are some things to consider:

  • During these months, employers hire to meet special holiday demands, to meet year-end business and financial goals, to fill budgeted positions for the current year, and to prepare for the new year – plus, there can be regular hiring, like replacing someone who has resigned.

  • If your friends and extended family don't know that you are looking for a job, casually fill them in at holiday events. The connections that lead to jobs happen in the unlikeliest places.

  • The holidays are a great reason to get back in touch with a former boss or co-workers, college friends, people in the neighborhood, your kid's soccer coach, etc. and let them know that you are considering a change.

  • Job searching during the holidays keeps you well-positioned when the traditional January 2nd job market expansion begins.  You will be actively engaged while others are just beginning or re-starting their job search.

  • Many companies have their next year budgets and projects in place and are recruiting people to start work in January. Looking in January is too late for jobs at these companies.

  • Fewer job seekers try to find jobs during this period, so competition is not as intense. You will have an easier time standing out from the crowd NOW.

  • So don't take the holidays off completely. Stay focused on your job search, and you'll increase your chances of landing that next job while others aren’t even paying attention!

    If you would like assistance in developing your next resume, click here to begin working on updating your resume.


Resume Writing Tips for Those Who Are Concerned About Their Age

October 5, 2014

As I write resumes for www.channingresumes.com, I am often asked the question: “what can I do to take the reader’s focus away from my age?”  If you are over 50 and concerned that you are being screened out because of your age, a good solution is creating an “ageless resume”.  The language, format and content you include in your resume can date you.  There are some tips to reflecting your qualifications for a position without revealing your age.  Here are some things to consider:

  1. Graduation dates are not required on resumes so you can eliminate them.

  2. Remove the mention of tenure in your summary statement.  Often resumes begin with the first line of a summary stating “over 20 years of experience...”  I recommend highlighting your talent and results rather than your years of experience.

  3. Limit the dated work experience to the most recent 15 years (which to employers is the best predictor of how you will perform in the future).  You can still include older work experience (if you feel that will enhance your marketing yourself), but I suggest creating another section on your resume called “Additional Experience” and omit dates in this section.

  4. Use current terminology and language on your resume.

  5. Include professional development details.  If you have updated your skills regularly and/or have completed certification in your industry or functional area, include them to demonstrate you are a lifelong learner.

By following these tips, you can reduce the risk against age discrimination.  Choosing the right information and terminology will demonstrate to hiring mangers that you are a valuable job candidate and the best person for the job.

If you would like assistance in developing your next resume, click here to begin working on updating your resume.

WHY SHOULD YOU KEEP YOUR RESUME UPDATED?

September 16, 2014

As a Resume Writer and Career Coach with www.channingresumes.com, I have often noted that savvy professionals keep their resumes updated whether or not they are contemplating a career move.  There are several reasons to do this, including:

  • In one of my earlier blog postings, on the hidden job market, I mention a job searching fact, most jobs are never advertised and gotten through people in our lives telling us about them.  If you hear of an opportunity that interests you (either from a friend/colleague or a call from a recruiter), are you ready to send your resume immediately or will you need to take a week or 2 to update it?

  • Promotions, many companies like to promote from within rather than hiring from outside an organization.  Because company executives and HR professionals might not be aware of your accomplishments, you need to make sure they become aware of them if you want to be considered for any future roles within the organization.

Whether you write your resume yourself or have it written professionally, there are a few things you need to do to make updating it fairly easy. Keep a file and include the following:

  • Any oral or written commendations.
  • If you lead or participate in a project, keep a description of the project and your part in it.
  • If you initiate a process improvement, make changes that increase efficiency or decrease costs, put that information in your file.
  • If you take a relevant course or workshop, include it; be sure to jot down the exact name of the course, the provider, and the date you completed it.
  • If you are promoted, include the date of promotion, a job description, and why you were promoted. Be sure to include the challenges of each promotion, the actions you took, and the results.
  • Include in your file anything that you think might be relevant to updating your resume.

It’s so easy to forget what you have accomplished, and you’ll be glad later that you took the time to do it. The stress of losing a job is only compounded when you do not possess a strong, updated resume.

If you would like assistance and would like more information on Channing Resumes, Click here to begin working on updating your resume.

4 Things You Need to KNOW When Developing Your Resume

August 9, 2014

4 Things You Need To Know When Developing Your Resume:

1. Know your audience:  Define as clearly as possible who your target audience is and find out as much as you can about them, including their probable needs. Use that as a launch-pad for developing your resume. 

2. Know yourself: Avoid either selling yourself short or inflating your capabilities. Instead, honestly evaluate what you can do, what you want to do, and-within those parameters-what you can offer potential employers that they would find worth paying good money for.

3. Know the market: To set yourself apart from the competition, you have to find legitimate ways to show prospective employers how you have added value in the past.

4. Know how to job search:  This is often the biggest struggle for job seekers.  If you would want to learn how to job search within the “hidden job market”, read this blog posting:

http://www.channingresumes.com/
blog/2014/6/3/whats-the-hidden-job-market


If you would like assistance developing your resume, click below for:

Resume and Job Search Correspondence Package

Free resume review 

Sample resume and template


WHAT SHOULD YOU NOT HAVE ON YOUR RESUME?

July 30, 2014

WHAT SHOULD YOU NOT HAVE ON YOUR RESUME?

As a resume writer with www.channingresumes.com my job is to assist others in knowing what should be included on their resume.  When writing a resume, it is also important to know what should NOT be on your resume.   Below are some of those items:

  1. A Regurgitation of Your Job Description: In most cases, employers care less about what you did day to day (like answer phones and email) and more about what you accomplished over time (like increased customer satisfaction 20%). If you would like assistance in crafting an accomplishment-based resume, click here to learn more about our Resume and Job Search Correspondence Package

  2. Photos or Other Visuals: A recent study showed that “such visual elements reduced recruiters’ analytical capability and hampered decision-making” and kept them from “locating the most relevant information, like skills and experience.”

  3. All Those Fonts: Stick with one—maybe two, if you have some design skills. Any more than that and you risk the hiring manager getting distracted.

  4. References Available Upon Request:” that will be assumed to employers and omitting it gives you the extra space to add a detail about your abilities or accomplishments.

  5. Personal details such as Your Birthdate, Marital Status, or Religion: Since it’s illegal for employers to consider this when looking at your application they can’t request it (and offering it makes you look a little clueless).

  6. Typos: don’t rely on spell check and grammar check alone—ask family or friends to take a look at it for you

  7. Anything that is false, make sure everything on your resume is true and that you can back it up on an interview.

     

    Click Below For:

    Resume and Job Search Correspondence Package

    Free Resume Review

    Sample Resume and Template

How Long Should My Resume Be?

July 27, 2014

HOW LONG SHOULD MY RESUME BE?

Clients often ask me this question at www.channingresumes.com.

Much of resume writing is a “strategic process” rather than a science, so there are very few “definite rules”.  Having said that, one “strategy” you should always keep in mind, is getting the reader’s attention in a concise manner, as the typical resume is read very quickly (under 20 seconds). 

  • Ideally a resume should be no longer than 2 pages as you may risk losing the reader’s attention.  If the reader does not like what she/he sees on the 1st page, they will stop reading.

  • The strategy will involve determining what adds value to marketing yourself for the position and what might be extraneous.

  • When is a 1-page resume appropriate?  If you have under 7 years of professional experience and your resume is over 1 page, examine if all the content is necessary. 

    When considering length, also consider these points:

  • It needs to be easily skimmed by the human eye; it should have short paragraphs that are concise.

  • When highlighting accomplishments, use quantifiable results / statistics whenever possible. It helps the reader see them quickly.

  • Abbreviations instead of zeros. One million dollars should be written $1M, not $1,000,000.

  • For one thousand dollars use $1K and for ten thousand use $10K.