If you’re unemployed, you probably have a few choice words to describe the job hunting process other than “it sucks”. In the event you have a job, but want out, you realize you’re too overworked to spend any quality time conducting a job search. Whether unemployed, underemployed or overworked, everyone comes to the same conclusion . . . there has to be a better way.
I’ve written previously about why you’re still unemployed and given reasons your hairstyle may be preventing you from getting a job, but after reading John Sullivan’s blog about why you can’t get a job, I thought it might be time to get you out of the doldrums and into thinking about a positive plan of action.
Let’s focus on your resume. I published a detailed course which walks you through step-by-step instructions on revising your resume, but it won’t help you to have a great resume if no one sees it.
Searching for a job is not the way any of us would like to spend our time, so I’m going to help you out and give you 3 ways to increase your chances of success.
The Six-Second Scan
I read the research report from TheLadders which uncovered the fact that recruiters spend on average 6 seconds reviewing your resume. That is not a mistake. Six seconds is all you get. So what are you doing with your six seconds?
Don’t distract the recruiter by using odd fonts or different formats in order to stand out. You want to be memorable for your skills, not as an anecdote in not what to do on a resume. Don’t waste the recruiter’s time by making us search for information. Make your start/end dates, job titles and education are easily
recognizable and in areas where we expect to see them.
In a recruiter roundtable I attended earlier this month, each of the recruiters gave examples of candidates who were rejected because of spelling errors on their resume. CareerBuilder’s statistic is 61% of rejection by recruiters for typos. Their rationale is that if you can’t get it right on a document which you know is of utmost importance and is under such a high amount of scrutiny, how are you going to perform once hired when the scrutiny is greatly reduced.
There is a simple fix for this. Make sure your resume is error-free. Send it to a friend to review, send it to your career counselor at your school, or hire a professional resume-writer to review, critique and if necessary, re-write.
The Black Hole
If a resume enters an online application system, but no one ever sees it, does it really exist?
How many job applications have you submitted online which did not require a resume? I’m 100% sure the answer to that question is zero. When you submit a resume online, where does it go? Why doesn’t anyone respond? You think you’ve uploaded a resume and the system ignored it. Why?
To increase your chances of getting eyeballs on your resume, make sure your resume contains the keywords that the applicant tracking system is seeking. Read the job description, pick a few key words and phrases and add them to your resume. Then make sure your resume is in a format that is easily scanable. If the system cannot recognize your resume, it will just move on.
If you have more resume questions, try the online course or reach out to a coach.