RE: resume fondling -- am I being too picky?

Subject: RE: resume fondling -- am I being too picky?
From: "Wright, Lynne" <lwright -at- positron911 -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 29 Apr 2005 13:41:44 -0400


By definition, tech writers should be able to write clearly and concisely; be thorough, consistent, and pay attention to details in terms of content and document formatting; and know how to do basic stuff like make pdfs...

So why would you consider the things you described as "harmless". I won't even bother interviewing somebody who's resume is sloppy and contains assaults upon the basic principles of tech writing, such as run-on sentences. ie. most of those "picky" things are actually proof that they don't meet the basic job requirements.

I mean, if a tech writer who's competing for a job can't be bothered to polish their introduction to you to the highest level possible, what does that say about what their work will be like?

-----Original Message-----
From: bounce-techwr-l-149168 -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Behalf Of T.W.
Sent: Friday, April 29, 2005 1:31 PM
Subject: resume fondling -- am I being too picky?

Am seeing quite a few resumes these days--telephony technical writing,
mostly books, a little online help, using FM and WWP mostly, some
Word. We receive mostly Word docs, to which I do not object (I prefer
reviewing these to reviewing PDFs). Here are some common things I trip
over, some are mostly harmless, but I trip on them anyway. Am I being
too picky?

1) Run-on sentences, especially in the objective/summary section.

2) Incorrect capitalization of the tools the candidate has said
they've used. For example, "Framemaker."

3) Everything tagged Normal. Or, a hodge-podge of style use. (Which is
why I prefer to receive Word files; I look at the structure of the
content in the resume and style use and evaluate the author based on
the sample.)

4) Failure to indicate which tools were used at which jobs.

5) Failure to indicate size of documentation projects at various jobs;
was it a long doc or short one? (I can infer some of this from the
tools used, PPT for example would cause me to believe the doc was
short, but I cannot infer that a user guide is either short or long.)

6) Oddly inconsistent case. For example, "I wrote User Guides and
online help"; I find it odd that User Guides and help differ in case.

7) Ambiguous employment descriptions anf an odd mix of sentences and
non-sentences in employment descriptions.

8) Poor font choice, manual kerning changes, that combined with
run-ons (1.) makes the resume hard to read.

9) Failure to embed fonts in PDFs.

10) Document properties that list an author other than the candidate.

I'll stop there. Thoughts?


Remember, this is online. Take everything with a mine of salt and a grin.


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