Glenn Wise: Resumes
The resume screening process is done in stages by most HR departments in order to narrow a large stack of them to a smaller, more manageable quantity.
Since employers are looking for the best workers to produce a good quality product, the quality of the resume is a good place to start culling out those candidates who did not submit a quality product.
Therefore, the very first stage in the process is to determine which resumes have grammatical and formatting errors. These conditions reflect poor workmanship and inattention to detail. The trained eye can detect formatting and typographical errors in less than 30 seconds. Resumes that are not free of those errors will go straight into the “no” file. The clean ones will go into the “yes” or “maybe” file for a further sort.
Michele Deuterman, Senior Vice President of Human Resources for ITG Brands, recently counseled members of The Triad Job Search Network on the value of making sure the resume is perfect in grammar and formatting. And, she revealed a broad problem among professionals today in not taking the time and effort to produce a high quality product in the resume.
Poor formatting can include spelling or grammar errors. Other errors are not bulleting an entire list, having improper or inconsistent spacing between words or sentences and mixing fonts within the same document.
One should read a resume multiple times before sending it out. The best way to detect visual errors is to have another party read it with a critical eye toward obvious errors.
There are several reseume forms that are acceptable: chronological, functional and a hybrid of the two. Every resume reviewer will have their own preference as to which is best. As long as the information is accurate and addresses the skills needed for the job, a good, standard resume with no “cute” fonts or pictures will suffice. The beauty of the resume is in the eye of the beholder.
However, a document that irritates common sense as far as format and grammar deserves to be rejected for carelessness. So, if a resume is failing to get responses from submittals, some time should be spent in cleaning up the document being sent to get an interview.
While some factors in job search are beyond the control of the job seeker, they must take great care with those things they do control, such as a clean, well-written resume. With computers and good printers today, there is no excuse for a good looking resume that is tailored to the job position being offered.
The resume is the first offering given to a company in order to get an interview. First impressions are lasting impressions. It is a foot in the door to get the door open further for a personal discussion about what you have to offer. So, make the resume look so good that the door is opened wide to welcome you in for a fruitful two-way conversation about how well you match the position opening.
Glenn Wise is owner of Right Hire Solutions, which provides prescreening and outplacement programs for companies in the Triad. Contact Wise at (336) 509-5606 or careerfocussolutions.com.
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