The impact of job search correspondence cannot be understated. How you represent yourself on paper has a tremendous impact on your chances for being selected for an internship or job. An effective resume and cover letter are likely to form a positive first impression to an employer, resulting in a competitive advantage.
All correspondence develops an impression, even a brief email makes an impact. A timely and well-organized thank you letter following an interview can dramatically sway the employer's deliberations in your favor.
1. Ensure that everything listed on your resume correlates to the job you are applying to.
2. Your resume should be either one page or two full pages (not 1.5 pages).
3. Your resume should include at least 5 keywords from the job description. Also, all bullets need to be lined up correctly.
4.The font on your resume should be easy to read and not too small (preferably size 12).
5.Your resume should clearly show that you meet at least the minimum qualifications (preferably meeting additional qualifications).
6. Your resume should have a summary section at the very top that shows that you meet the requirements of the job. The summary section identifies how you can help solve the company’s problems. Hint: Your resume should not say “I am looking for a job in ……”
7. Each bullet on your resume should start with a positive action verb.
8. Correct verb tense should always be used. If it’s a past job, all verbs should be past tense. If you are currently working there, use present tense. This seems easy but you would be amazed at how much this is missed!
9. Your experience section should clearly detail results and accomplishments using numbers whenever possible (preferably quantified with percentages and numbers).
10. Your resume should show how you have added value and solved problems at every company you list. It should not just be a list of tasks.
11. Your education section should be clear with your degree, school name and applicable courses, projects or training that relate to the job you are applying to.
12. There should be absolutely no misspellings or grammatical errors.
13. You should leave the reader wanting to know more about you and it should include something unique and memorable about you. Remember, they are looking for someone who they can spend 40+ hours a week with. Show them that you are fun to work with too!
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