Sorry, but we are going to have to postpone our world’s greatest potato soup recipe. For many people just starting out, the most daunting task seems to be the dreaded job hunt. Resumes, fancy clothes and actually having to speak to a prospective employer in person. Sounds terrifying, but you can alleviate some of that worry by having a game plan.
Alright first thing is first, you need to gather all of your information. Where you went to high school, college courses you have taken or degrees you have received, previous places of employment, contact numbers for old supervisors and oh yes, dates for everything. Now you may have a lot or you may have a little. Regardless you are going to want your resume to take up one full page. Multi-page resumes get glossed over too easily and anything shorter looks wanting .
The resume itself is rather simple, the key is organization. I’m sure you can find dozens of templates online, but they all follow the same pattern. Your name and contact info is at the top, be sure to include both phone number and email. Also, drop the goofy high school email. Chunkymonkey47@email.com or PrinceofDarknessEmoKing@email.com are going to be a big turn off for prospective employers at serious establishments. Standard procedure is something like firstname.lastname@whatever or FLastname@whatever (the ‘F’ is your first initial.
The Second section is generally a small blurb about yourself. Here is where you can fill some white space if you need to, but generally a succint sentence detailing who you are is enough.
The third section: Education info. Only put the latest school you have been to unless you received multiple degrees, and dates you have attended or are attending. No need to put your major unless it actually fits the job. Or computer science, because everywhere you go you are probably going to use a computer.
The fourth section is previous employment info. Dates you worked, where you worked, what your job title was and a short list of your duties there.You can elaborate on the last part if you are hurting for more fluff on the resume. If you have too many jobs, pick the ones that make you look the best, more than 3 seems excessive.
The Fifth section: Here varies a lot. We here like to put character traits that best describe you. I’m not talking “bubbly”, “friendly” or “eats too much”. More like: Types 40+ WPM, Speaks Language1, Language2, Proficient with Microsoft word and Excel, Years of office experience, flexible schedule etc. Try and go with concrete (and accurate) things. If you don’t have many, feel free to use buzzwords like: Attention to detail, works great in a team, and follows instructions well, things like that. They might work, but they are seen so often most employers are just going to gloss over any buzz words they see.
Now go online and find a template you like. If it doesnt match what we described here, that is okay, but you have an idea of what you are going to need.
Once you have your first draft of the resume (oh yeah, there will be more), start hunting. You can go around your local area and try to apply in person, but more and more companies are starting to only take online applications. Try some of these websites:
We do not recommend craigslist. While it is a decent source of job listings, there are so many scams running around that you will spend more time vetting the potential employer than you will actually applying, stick to the more official domains. Now as you are searching, they are probably going to ask you for your resume. Don’t submit the first draft. Go back and modify the draft to make it geared more toward the needs of that individual company. Generally if you can make your resume hit all of the requirements listed on their site, you better your chances of getting a call. After you submit your resume, the company’s website will likely have you refill out all of the information anyway, just in a different. It is time consuming, however you should do both.
Don’t submit to one, submit to as many as you can and keep your cellphone handy. Check your email at least 3 times/day. Once you got all of the lines in the water, some fish is sure to bite. Well this article has gone on for a considerable amount of time, so let’s go ahead and save the interview stuff for another time.
Thanks for Reading!
If you have anything in particular you want advice on, email us at AskTheAdviceGuys@gmail.com
The Advice Guys are a collection of individuals from all walks of life. Their expertise ranges from Personal Finance, Nutrition, Fitness, Study Habits, Job Skills, Mental Well Being, Relationships, and Personal Communication Skills.