Re: Newbies getting jobs...

Subject: Re: Newbies getting jobs...
From: The Tech Writer <techwrtr -at- CRL -dot- COM>
Date: Tue, 14 Apr 1998 06:54:40 -0700

> Allow me to state here what my position is with regard to hiring, so that
> all the newbies can see my opinion and veterans can disagree.
> First, resumes are bogus. Or as close as makes no odds. A resume is like
> your front door; you have to have one, but don't put too much faith in its
> effectiveness. Getting a job is hard work; broadcasting resumes is laziness.
> Have one for distribution, but do it on good white stock and then stick it
> in an envelope for when it's asked for.

Well, I agree with everything else that Tim said, except maybe this
statement. I think that I agree with the sentiment behind it: "Don't rely
on your resume to land you a job," however, as stated, it sounds like a
good resume isn't important. I can't disagree more.

I see a resume as a tool to get an interview. If your resume doesn't look
good, I mean in layout, no typos, and so on, as well as content, you just
aren't going to be the first pick in the interview pool. We're hiring for
two positions, and just got a resume with a bunch of different colors
used randomly, online help written four different ways (on-line help,
online HELP, Online Help, and Online HELP). And it was in the third
person (Mr. Jones completed college in 1982 and then...). It was quite
amusing, but while the person had a LOT of qualifications, he just isn't
going to get an interview at our company.

So, a good resume is important. But definitely be willing to do more.
Email the person who posted the job and ask them about the company.
That's what one of our interviewees did. She's been conversing about
various issues with the one who posted the job to the list. It shows that
the person isn't just looking for "a job," but that she's looking for
"the right job." Which type of job is the applicant more likely to stay at
for a few years?

And, yes, network. Heck, I gave my card to a guy who struck up a
conversation with me at the mall while he and I were both waiting to meet
people. He wasn't in technical writing. Heck, he wasn't even in the
computer field. But I'll be he knows someone who knows someone who is.
Don't limit your contacts to people in the field. When you need a job,
tell your banker and your mail carrier and your neighbors and the guy who
walks his dog in front of your house. Word of mouth is worth a lot in this

-David Castro
techwrtr -at- crl -dot- com

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