Happy Friday Everyone!
All of us at Dennis Staffing Partners are wishing everyone safety and health during these trying times. For our first blog, I thought I would offer advice on how to handle being unemployed with resume tips and interview communication strategies. Over the past several weeks, the job market has been greatly affected throughout the world. Many are losing their jobs, getting laid off, or are stuck in limbo applying for jobs. While I do not have all the answers, I am happy to offer any support I can to those whose job has been affected and companies struggling to hire during the COVID-19 pandemic.
A.) For those who have lost their job or are laid off with no immediate answer, try and use this time to assess and update your resume. This can be time consuming, but can make all the difference when applying for jobs. On average, a recruiter or HR representative only spends 6-10 seconds scanning it. It is encouraged to tailor each resume to show relevancy to the individual job you are applying for.
1.) Keywords are VERY important. All job postings will have responsibilities and job duties listed. Make sure your resume is filled with all pertaining keywords to match the job positing. This is what a recruiter is going to scan for. So, if those keywords on your resume match those in the job posting, the better the chance for your resume to stand out from others. My recommendation is to do this for every job you apply for.
2.) Keep everything UNIFORM. Make sure you use the same font for the entire resume and always spell check and proof read each line. You also want to make it as simple, and easy to read as possible. As far as a blueprint, here is a sample recommendation:
(address, phone number, email)
EDUCATION (not all roles require education, but it makes it easier to lead off, especially if it is a technical/management role)
SKILLS/CERTIFICATIONS (great place to use those keywords)
Company January 2012 - Present
Trained all personnel in Lean Manufacturing principles and Six Sigma methodologies.
Designed and implemented multiple automatic molding optic manufacturing and inspection vision systems with full SPC capability. Productivity and quality levels increased by >25%.
Generated revenue of $3.0M, a YOY increase of 8.82%.
Each bullet point should be a quick breakdown of your job responsibilities, with the most relevant at the top (5-7 bullet points usually suffice for each job). Also, do not copy and paste bullet points from one job to another even if it is the same job title. While both jobs may have many similarities, each one needs to have its own identity.
Any metrics and numbers you can provide that show tangible results are always beneficial. Employers love to see these type of examples. There are many ways to put together a resume, but from my experience, this format is efficient, easy to navigate, and most companies I partner with prefer.
3.) JOB HISTORY IS CRUCIAL. I highly recommend to put your tenure with each job in bold as I have done in the sample resume above. If you have had long stints with companies, an employer will absolutely take that into consideration (make it stand out). For those with shorter stints whether it be contract roles, or just bad luck with previous employment, address it in the resume. Put a brief reason why you left next to each company name (company-wide layoff, relocated, department shutdown, etc...) Whatever the case is, be transparent, because it will come up in conversation. Companies want employees who are looking for stability and growth opportunities. Believe me, your future employer understands not every reason for leaving a job is your fault, but if they see a pattern of job hopping, they will want to dig in further; be prepared to answer.
4.) LENGTH CAN VARY. Many recruiters and agencies will tell you keep it 1 page or less, while some will say as many pages as you want. My advice is to keep it a length where each previous employment and job title are relevant to the one you are applying for. For instance, if you are applying for an Engineering opening, there is no need to put a paper route you had in 2004. Remember 6-10 seconds on average is all you are going to have to make that first impression when applying to a posting. Think to yourself, "What is going to catch this recruiter's eye, and is it relevant to the role I am for which I am applying?" On average 1-3 pages at the most should be adequate enough.
B.) For those who are in the interview process and stuck waiting to hear back from companies, I do not necessarily have the right answer for you. Each company is having to make their own decisions about how they are hiring right now. My recommendation is simple: communication. Recognize that they are in uncharted waters just like you and me. With that being said, this is your livelihood, so it is perfectly acceptable to continue to check in for updates. Put in calendar reminders or alarms on your phone to check back in at the beginning and end of each week. Sometimes a gentle nudge by the recruiter to the hiring team can keep things moving along.
While you have to make a decision that is right for you and your future, do not take a job just to take it. I absolutely understand any offer can look great on paper right now, especially if you are under financial stress. But if you are not excited about the role and your future with that company, chances are you will wind back on the job market again sooner than later. Wait for that role and company you can envision yourself enjoying while having success.
As we are technically approaching only our 8th month being fully up and running, we are very humbled by all the support and business we have received thus far. Call it grassroots if you want, but we pride ourselves on the relationships we have made over our lifetime honestly. We believe in waking up every morning and doing the right thing. Thank you all for your continued support.
For any questions, needs, or help email firstname.lastname@example.org
Wishing you all the best,