Cracking the code on resumés: N.L. entrepreneur shares what it takes to land big jobs

Monday, October 2nd, 2017 - Resume

Fresh off his experience in Silicon Valley meeting with recruiters at big name companies like Apple and Tesla, a Newfoundland entrepreneur is looking to share his insights to help others land dream jobs.

“I really want to get out this information so people can do it themselves,” Adam Keating told CBC Radio’s St. John’s Morning Show.

Keating is a recently graduated engineer who was part of the team from Memorial University that launched the world’s first successful run of a hyperloop pod using air-bearing technology and placed second in the SpaceX hyperloop competition. 

During his experiences, Keating has had the opportunity to meet people from companies such as Tesla, Apple and SpaceX. Now he wants to help people cash in on his — and others’ — recent successes. 

Keating and his Paradigm Hyperloop team finished second in the SpaceX Hyperloop competition and made history with the world’s first successful run of an air-bearing model. (Paradigm Hyperloop/Facebook)

“All these really high-name companies — a lot of them in the Elon Musk portfolio — [are] looking to hire students from MUN, because they’re seeing these names now on an international level after seeing how well the hyperloop team has done, how well Enactus has done, the Baja team,” he said.

“There’s been so much success here that’s kind of been quiet for a long time, and now they’re really seeing that, hey, there are these people in Newfoundland that we should really be looking at.”

Despite thinking he’d end up working full-time in tech mecca Silicon Valley, Keating — who’s in his early 20s — took his talents home and started his own companies. He is one of the founders of CoLab Software and the chief technology officer and co-founder of Duxion motors.

Now that he is on the other side of hiring, he has some tools to beef up resumés and help job-seekers stand out from the crowd.

“The key is you need to know your audience. Understanding what they’re looking for is really essential,” he said.

Capitalize on skills, find out what you’re missing

Keating said a recruiter at a big company can get 500 resumés a day and will take only 10 seconds to look through each before moving on to the next.

“I learned — just from trial and error, really — what worked and what didn’t,” Keating said.

“Then I started doing my own hiring recently and it just became so much more evident to me how important it is how you structure what you’re submitting to people.”

In addition to knowing your audience, Keating suggests drawing parallels from what you currently do for work and what you want to do — if you plan on switching fields — and capitalizing on your skills. He also said it’s important to know where you’re lacking, so you can fill the void and improve your skills. 

First glance response

Keating said he can tell on first glance whether he wants to continue reading a resumé. 

“First, it’s formatted really nicely so you don’t have to go looking for things … the person is basically taking you through their resumé, instead of you having to look through their resumé,” he said.

“Honestly, when I look at a resumé, I don’t care about the fluffy stuff … I like to see what this person did and what that actually means. Filler words don’t do a whole lot for me, but saying what your experience was and what you learned, that’s the important part in your experience.”

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