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Resume Writing/Interview Tips

How to write an effective Resume
Ten seconds
  Studies show that regardless of how long you labor over your resume, most employers will spend 10 seconds looking at it. That's it.

Because of the masses of job searchers, most managers and human resource employees receive an enormous number of resumes. Faced with a pile of paper to wade through every morning, employers look for any deficiency possible to reduce the applicant pool to a manageable number. Thus, your resume must present your information quickly, clearly, and in a way that makes your experience relevant to the position in question. That means condensing your information down to its most powerful form.

So distill, distill, distill . Long, dense paragraphs make information hard to find and require too much effort from the overworked reader. If the reader can't figure out how your experience applies to the available position, your resume is not doing its job.

Solve this problem by creating bulleted, indented, focused statements. Short, powerful lines show the reader, in a glance, exactly why they should keep reading.

Think about how to write up your experience in targeted clear, bulleted, detail-rich prose. Here are some basic rules which you can follow.
Rule No 1: Do not write a long and boring description of your current job.
  Do not turn your resume into a tedious list of key responsibility areas. Many people even use their company jargon in writing a resume. Do tell the prospective employer how you made a difference to your job. Provide specific examples of how the company you work for gained from your performance. Highlight any goals which you achieved ahead of time, or any special cost-cutting measures spearheaded by your department. Your resume should answer the following questions:
  • What special expertise did you bring to your current job?
  • Attach any special praise, certificates of achievement presented to you or your department?
  • What were the problems or challenges that you or the organisation faced?
  • What did you do to overcome the problems?
Rule No 2: Do not use long-winded sentences and old-fashioned language.
  "Sir, I would hereby draw your esteemed attention to the way my talents are in tandem with your company's long-term gaols" is a sentence most employers do not have time to read. Be specific, be direct. Which goals will you help the company to achieve - better sales revenue, a new strategy to cut costs, better management of inter-department communication. Explain in a few crisp sentences what you do now, and what you aim to do in your new job.
Rule No 3: Do not write a CV of over two pages.
  Most employers just don't have the time to go through long CVs. If you've answered a newspaper advertisement, you can safely conclude that a flood of CVS would have landed on the employer's desk. To stand out, your CV should be short and to-the-point . List all your achievements but keep them short. Current job profile, years of experience, educational background and personal details are a must. Do put in a short paragraph showing your knowledge about the industry as a whole.
Rule No 4: Do not sprinkle your CV with personal pronouns (I and Me)
  It is your CV and is bound to be about you. However, try to avoid using I, me, my in the CV.

The statement: I overshot my sales target by 20 percent and I was given a special increment by the marketing director is better written as: Overshot my sales target by 20 percent, and was given a special increment by the marketing director.
Rule No 5: Do not list personal information such as how you spend your leisure time.
  Your interests such as reading, dancing, rock-climbing should not be included in your CV unless such information is specifically asked by the employer. But if you are applying for a job in public relations or communication, do list good writing, reading habits, enjoy meeting new people as your work-related interests. Personal information, such as date of birth, address, telephone n umber should be written in the last section of your CV.
Rule No 6: Connect your skills to your job history.
  Your resume should record your career progression. That is, do link new skills to jobs done. Also mention the skills that you now have to the job you are applying for. Here is the basic resume layout:
  • Lead with a strong profile section (detailing the scope of your experience, skill sets, key responsibility are as)
  • Reverse chronological employment history (emphasising achievements in the past 10-15 years)
  • Education (this might be moved to the top for new grads)
  • Other related topics include professional affiliations, community activities, technical expertise, and languag es spoken.
  • Personal details.
Rule No 7: Do write industry keywords in your CV.
  With the majority of large and medium-size companies using technology to store resumes, the only hope a job seeker has of being found in an applicant search is the inclusion of relevant industry keywords. These do not have to be a separate section; rather, they can be sprinkled throughout the resume. A good way to determine keywords is to read job descriptions for positions that interest you. If you see industry buzzwords, incorporate them into your resume.
Rule No 8: Keep references ready but supply them only if asked for.
  Referees (people in responsible positions who refer you for the job) are key to getting a good job. Do keep at least two good referees lined up but do not list them unless you are asked for them.
Rule No 9: Avoid Spelling mistakes.
  Read your resume at least three times for spelling mistakes or printing errors. Nothing turns off an employer more than a carelessly drawn-up CV.
Rule No 10: Follow-up on your resume
  Make a phone call to the company to follow-up, if you have sent your resume by post.

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