And speaking of resumes...

Subject: And speaking of resumes...
From: "James Barrow" <vrfour -at- verizon -dot- net>
To: <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 22 Jan 2007 20:40:56 -0800

I got this in an email from

Clarifying your Prior Employer's Business

I wish I had a nickel for every resume I have read that forgets to tell me
what ABC Company does. You might be asking, "I have never heard of ABC
Company." My reply to your statement would be "That makes both of us."

As a headhunter who recruits and reads resumes covering the fields of
architecture and engineering, I often make a judgment in a matter of seconds
whether a candidate would be a good fit for a particular position. What
truly is a shame is that when a resume fails to include a single sentence
describing a previous employer's specialty, the candidate runs the risk of
being eliminated from positions for which they could be emminently

Let's get back to the previously mentioned ABC Company. If this company is a
manufacturer of hula-hoops, and I am looking for a Registered Architect with
experience designing commercial buildings, then there is no great loss when
the candidate's resume fails to explain ABC's specialty. But if I'm
searching for someone with experience working in the toy and leisure field,
then by not summarizing what ABC does on his or her resume, a candidate
could be missing out on a potential dream job.

So what is the solution for keeping the person reviewing your resume
interested or at least properly informed?

The answer is a single sentence that captures what your previous employer
does or who their core audience is. What's even better is describing what
the employer does in a manner that reveals how your experience meets the
needs of the position for which you are applying. So if the hiring company
has a long history of producing items that can move in a circular motion
around one's waist, then please don't forget to mention ABC Company's
signature line of hula-hoops.

2000- 2004 ABC Company Minneapolis, MN
Job Title - position description

2000-2004 ABC Company Minneapolis, MN
America's leading manufacturer of hula-hoops and games.
Job Title- position description

*** Notice the description inserted on the second line in the "After"
example above. ***

At the risk of hitting job seekers over the head with my point, don't assume
everyone knows what ABC Company does. In fact you would be wise to look at
your resume from the standpoint of someone that lives several states away
and has no knowledge of your profession.

In summary, make sure your resume describes what your employer does and the
key skills you bring to the desired job. In other words, it's important that
your resume conveys the intended message. If this seems like too much work,
then please don't send me your resume unless you include a nickel.

- Jim


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