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"The winds and waves are always on
the side of
the ablest navigators." -- Edward Gibbon
The Right Way
to Send Your
a great resume is the first critical step in a successful job search.
Unfortunately, most people donít know the best ways to get that resume
noticed. In todayís job market,
where you are competing with hundreds of other resumes, knowing the right way to
distribute your resume can make all the difference.
First of all you need to get organized and stay organized.
When you get that call from the 200 resumes you sent out, you need to
make sure you are ready to show that you
know all about the company thatís
calling. So keep a log detailing
the name of the company, the position advertised and the dates you contacted
them along with any notes.
Next post your resume on the job boards. Note
that the job boards are not the most effective way to get a job with most of
them having an effectiveness rate of less than 3%.
Nonetheless, they should be a part of your strategy.
Put your resume on the large job boards and be sure to find the job
boards that are specific to your profession as many employers are skipping the
expensive giants and focusing their search.
To post your resume, youíll need an electronic (or ASCII) version of your
resume. You can do this by opening
your resume in MS Word, hitting File-Save As and choosing Text Only. This will create a .txt version of your resume.
Close the file, reopen it and edit out any stray characters left over
from your bullets and other graphics characters.
This file will now cut and paste into web sites and e-mails and
automatically format itself. When
you post to the job boards, remember to setup search agents that automatically
tell you about a new job posting. This
will let you be one of the first ones to apply.
Next find the advertised positions that meet your criteria.
You can do this by surfing the job boards, checking the papers and
looking at company web sites. Donít
forget to look at trade publications as less people respond to those ads meaning
youíre up against less competition.
As much as possible, try to find the name of the hiring manager and address your
correspondence directly to them.
Now revise your cover letter to fit the ad.
Remember that an employer will look at your cover letter for 3-7 seconds,
so keep it brief and easy to read using white space and bullets. Do not try to repeat what is already in your resume.
Instead, tell them how you meet the criteria they mentioned in their
advertisement. Then proofread the
cover letter as any mistakes will eliminate you.
Print your resume and cover letter on matching stationery, either a white or
buff colored 24 lb. paper. Stay
away from the fancy colors. If you
have the extra money, a 100% cotton watermarked paper is impressive, but not
really necessary. Look at the
copies to make sure they are neatly printed.
Buy matching 9 x 12 envelopes as they will stand out more and your
good-looking resume wonít have to be folded.
If you can print labels, buy the clear kind as they look almost as if
they were typed on the envelope.
Next, we will make sure that you are noticed because we will be e-mailing and
sending your resume and following up with a phone call.
Yes, this is aggressive and if you do it correctly, you will definitely
be noticed. Follow the instructions
in the ad first, so if they say e-mail the resume then do that first.
Otherwise send the paper copies first and send the e-mail 2 days later,
mentioning that the e-mail is a follow-up to your mailed resume. Remember to
mark in your Job Search Log the date you e-mailed/mailed them.
Finally, prepare to call the employer no later than 3 days after your resume has
arrived. This is critical as most
people donít do this. Most
importantly, develop a phone script to use.
If you just say, ďIím calling to see if you got my resumeĒ, then
youíve blown it. Instead show
that you know something about the company and state that youíd really like to
know more about the job. Then ask
one or two great questions that demonstrate your knowledge and insights.
For example, if you are going for a sales position, ask, ďI know your
company is growing, is this position for a new territory or an existing one?Ē
If they say itís a new territory, casually mention how you opened a new
territory before and delivered 120% of sales targets.
As much as possible try to build a rapport with the person youíre
speaking with, as employers hire people they like.
Key tip: watch your energy
level and intonation as they are the most important factors that define how you
will come across. Be friendly,
professional and conversational. End by asking if you may call them again next week to see how
the selection process is progressing.
Remember that most people donít follow these steps and if you do, your resume
will rise to the top of the stack!
Don Goodman is President of About Jobs,
www.gotthejob.com, a Resume Writing and Job Search Assistance firm. Contact him at 800-909-0109 or by e-mail at