|Resume Rules for Success
A resume should be attractive, clean and clearly written.
Your resume should answer some basic questions for a potential employer:
- who you are
- what you know
- what your capabilities are
- what you have learned
- what you have accomplished
- Don’t list personal information.
- Don’t title your resume, for example, as Resume or Curriculum Vitae.
- Don’t list reasons for leaving positions.
- Don’t use the third person.
- Don’t attach written references or certificates.
Keep it short. A one-page resume is suitable to describe your best capabilities. A second page is appropriate for senior level positions.
- Use 8-1/2” x 11” paper in beige, white or off-white.
- Margins should be 1 inch on all sides.
- Use an 11 point, Times Roman or Helvetica font.
- Your name should be at the top of the page and should be the largest item on the page.
Check and double check
Always have someone proofread your resume; do not trust spell-check alone.
Recent Graduates Should List:
- % of Education paid for
- Awards & Scholarships
- Sorority or Fraternity
- Foreign Languages
- Sports and Clubs
- Related Activities
- GPA if 3.0 or higher
You only have one chance to make a first impression. Make a good one. To do that, you need to prepare yourself ahead of time and make sure you follow some common sense rules about the interview itself:
Before each interview:
- Plan your day. Allow plenty of time for the interview. Drive there the day before the interview and find parking.
- Contact your references and alert them that they may be getting a call.
- Research your potential employer. Find out about the industry, company history and philosophy. Check out their website.
- Make sure you have a clear understanding of the position for which you are interviewing.
- Prepare a script to sell yourself.
- Be ready to answer the question, “Tell me about yourself.” This should not be biographical information. It should stress three points: How you were able to save money, make money, and save time in any of your previous positions.
- Understand and know your strengths and weaknesses.
- Anticipate three potential questions that you may be asked and prepare a response.
- Identify three questions you want to ask your interviewer.
- Practice answers to questions that you have had problems with in the past.
- Practice your speech patterns.
- Observe your mannerisms and facial expressions in a mirror.
- Get someone to “role play” with you.
- Do be prepared to tell your interviewer how much you are currently earning and when you received your last raise and when you expect your next raise. This information will allow you to express to the interviewer that you are looking for the most competitive offer regarding salary.
- Do bring more than one copy of your resume with you on an interview.
- Dress professionally for your interview even if the dress code for the company is casual.
- Carry a portfolio. A briefcase may be cumbersome.
- Be prepared to complete an application thoroughly and take any tests required.
- One last thing
Make a lasting impression. Prepare a “Thank You” note to send following your interview.
- Don’t wear sunglasses.
- Don’t allow your beeper or cellular phone to interrupt your interview. Make sure beepers and cellular phones are turned off or are on silent.
- Don’t eat or chew gum or candy.
- Don’t wear perfume or cologne.
You have an offer.
Congratulations! You've gotten an offer. But there's still a few more things you need to do:
- Settle all Benefits & Compensation issues with your recruiter.
- Formally accept the offer verbally or in writing using the exact words “I accept.”
- Tender your resignation at your present job.
Below are some sample letters you can use as a guide for accepting your new position and resigning from your old one.
Sample Acceptance Letter:
Dear Mr./Ms. (name of your new employer),
I am delighted that (company name) has extended an offer to me for
(XYZ) position. I accept your offer. This letter is to confirm my
start date of (start date). I am very excited about joining your team
and I look forward to becoming an integral part of (company name).
Sample Resignation Letter:
Dear Mr./Ms. (name of your current employer),
Please accept this letter as my official notice of resignation. I appreciate the work we have been able to accomplish together at (company name), although I have now made a commitment to another organization and plan to begin with them in two weeks.
Know that it is my intention to work diligently with you to wrap up as much as possible in the next two weeks to make my resignation as smooth as possible. If you have any suggestions on how we can best accomplish that goal, I hope you will share your thoughts with me, as I am eager to leave on the most positive note possible.