Re: FWD: handling non-tech writing jobs on resume

Subject: Re: FWD: handling non-tech writing jobs on resume
From: Bruce Byfield <bbyfield -at- axionet -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 03 Jun 2002 09:37:14 -0300

Anonymous wrote:

If I go from Sr. Technical Writer to... say... an office job,
bank teller, or retail for a while, how do I handle
it? If you've done this in the past, what did you put
on your resume. Hiring managers: What would you like
to see? I don't want to foul up my opportunities in
the future but I need to get benefits and support my

Your question predisposes that a resume is a complete and objective job history. This is a very common assumption, but, I think, a mistaken one.

Instead, think of a resume as a job history tailored to the job that you are applying for. You should never lie on a resume, but what you mention and how you emphasize it should depend on the job that the resume is being used for.

In this case, your non-tech writing work may not even rate a mention on your tech-writing resume. If you feel you must mention it, give it only a line or so. On my own tech-writing resume, my seven years as a sessional university instructor is only mentioned in a single bullet point at the end.

If you do decide to mention non-writing jobs in more detail, mention them in terms of how they are relevant to writing. For example, if a non-writing job gives you managerial experience, then it could be relevant if you are going for a publications manager job. If you can't make the work relevant, then it should be omitted or de-emphasized on your tech-writing resume.

Bruce Byfield 604.421.7177 bbyfield -at- axionet -dot- com

"Funny how the years have flown,
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FWD: handling non-tech writing jobs on resume: From: Anonymous

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