Resume Writing Service – Q&A

What’s the best way to start writing the resume?

Here’s one of the best tips for getting started when preparing a resume. Would you normally start at the top, bottom, or middle? Most people start at the top and that’s where they get frustrated. You’ll find this whole process will go much faster and will be less frustrating if you start from the bottom and then work up. This strategy focuses on doing the easiest things first-write the factual sections on educational background, professional affiliations, and work history. These sections should go quickly and set the stage to completing the more difficult sections. After doing these sections, you can complete the more analytical parts of other sections, such as work expend statement of qualifications, and your objective. Many resume writers find the various parts of the resume come together much better if you approach the writing exercise from the bottom up. If you are having difficulty, using a resume writing service can expedite the process.

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Is it ever appropriate to handwrite a resume?

Not in the U.S. If you are applying for a job in Europe, you may be requested to handwrite your resume. Many European employers still use handwriting analysts to screen candidates for personality characteristics. These analysts supposedly can tell through your handwriting whether or not you are “fit” for the job. Using a resume writing service will professionally type your resume out on a computer and make you stand out.

Is it okay to handwrite notes on the resume?

Do this if you’re sending your resume to your mother or loved one. This is not the time or place to practice time management skills by scribbling brief notes on correspondence. Your resume should represent your best professional effort at presenting your qualifications to employers. Handwritten notes are too personal. Worst of all, they distract from your professionalism. They give your resume a killer “personal touch” for getting you screened out from consideration. If you have something to say that can’t be said on the resume, put it in your cover letter.

What should come first on a resume?

Always follow the principle of putting the most important information first on your resume. On a resume, this means starting with your name and contact information: mailing address and telephone number and perhaps your fax number, pager number, and/or e-mail address. Immediately follow this section with important summary information: “Objective” and “Summary of Qualifications.” These three elements make a strong five-second impression: who you are, what you want to do, what you have done, and what major strengths you will most likely bring to a new employer. A a resume writing service company understands resume writing protocol and will ensure proper presentation of your resume.

Should I include an e-mail address?

By all means, especially if you are over 40. An e-mail address communicates that you are up-to-date for today’s job market, someone who knows how to communicate. You can probably speak the language of younger people in the organization. In addition, the employer can always contact you by e-mail.

Is it okay to use a P.O. Box number rather than a street address on my resume?

Avoid using post office box numbers unless you are truly in transition from one street address to another. Post office box numbers do not enhance your image. Indeed, they may communicate the wrong messages, you appear transient or secretive. Always use a street address, unless for some reason it communicates the wrong message. If you are confused or uncertain, contact a resume writing service to ask questions or check out career tips to get help.

Should I include both a home and work telephone number?

Yes, if you want to be contacted as soon as possible. However, be careful with in eluding your work number, especially if you don’t want your current employer to know you are job hunting. Alternatively, you may want to only use your home phone number but enlist an answering service to handle your messages. If you’re very mobile and carry a beeper, include your beeper number.

Since no one is at home during the day, should I use an answering machine to take calls?

Yes, if you’re afraid you might miss any important calls and especially if you prefer no taking employment calls at your place of work. However, keep your message short simple, friendly, and professional. Avoid voice mail programs that include bells and whistles or comical characters. Try to check your messages at least once a day and return calls promptly.

In addition to my telephone number, should I include a fax number pager number, or e-mail address on my resume?

Yes. The principle for including such information is this: How can I best be contacted at all times? If an employer cannot contact you in a timely manner, chances are you may be eliminated from consideration and be viewed as “more trouble than you’re worth.”  Not sure, contact a resume writing service to address your career / job search concerns.

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I have a home page. Should I also include the URL on my resume?

Be careful here. It depends on what’s on your home page. Will the information enhance your resume and further communicate your qualifications to employers? Or have you included a lot of personal information that might distract from your professionalism? Does it include your photo, information on your family and pets, and you lifestyle? If it does, it should not see the light of day as part of your job search. If your home page is not designed to directly relate to and thus enhance your resume, candidacy, and professional image, do not volunteer this information on your resume. On the other hand you may want to create a separate home page which only contains your web resume or develop a web portfolio.

I look great! Should I include my photo on the resume?

Not unless you are seeking a position in modeling, theater, movies, or other occupations where how you look is key to the selection process. For most positions, a photo becomes a two-edged sword where 50% of your audience may like your photo, but the other 50% may hate it. The problem is that you don’t know which 50% like it. Regardless of how much you love your photo and yourself, it’s inappropriate to include a photo on most resumes. Exceptions to this rule arise when employers request a photo, often international employers, or it is expected in your professional field, such as modeling. Most resume writing services will help you confirm what is appropriate or inappropriate for your specific situation.

What other things should I avoid putting on my resume?

Avoid any extraneous information that does not support your objective or communicate your qualifications to employers. The first thing to leave off your resume is the word “Resume”; it’s obvious what it is. Avoid including your height, weight, age, sex, religion, health, politics, names and ages of children, spouse’s occupation, parent’s occupation, and other personal information that is not a bona-fide job qualification. Also, do not include references or salary history / requirements. Apply this simple guiding inclusion/exclusion principle for packing a suitcase: “When in doubt, throw it out.” Your focus should be on communicating just enough information about your qualifications so the employer will be interested enough to invite you to an interview. When in doubt, consult with a resume writing service.

Is it really necessary to write an online resume in today’s job market?

Yes. How frequently you use it will depend on what position you’re applying for, whom you’re applying to, and whether or not you’re using e-mail and online resume databases to market your qualifications. In today’s fast-paced job market, invariably employers will request that you send your resume via e-mail.

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Do many people get jobs by posting their resumes on the Internet?

We hope so, but probably not as many as one might expect, given all the talk about conducting an Internet job search. In fact, many job seekers may be wasting a lot of time and effort using the Internet to find a job. Probably no more than 15% of job seekers eventually get a job via their Internet job search efforts. In spite of all the Internet hype, we really don’t know how effective the Internet is for job seekers in terms of actually getting interviews that result in jobs. It probably depends on your background. If you are in computer and high-tech fields or have exotic skills that are difficult to find through other recruitment channels, you may get lucky with the Internet. Ironically, it’s especially effective for employers who can quickly screen hundreds, if not thousands, of candidates through Internet employment sites. Contacting your local resume writing service can be of great help here.

 

Indeed, thousands of employers now include the Internet in their recruitment strategies. A resume writing service can help you pinpoint what sites are relevant. After all, it’s much cheaper to advertise on the Internet than to purchase classified ads or use headhunters. In many respects, the Internet is a high-tech resume “broadcast” medium where you can expect to get few “hits” unless you are exceptionally well qualified. Be sure to use the Internet in your job search, but don’t spend a disproportionate amount of time looking for a job on the Internet. Like classified ads, job sites on the Internet are only one of many resources to include in your job search.