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How To Get Your Resume Noticed


According to human resources consultant Greg Chartier, “If you are sending your resumé out or filling out application forms and you are not getting interviews, something is wrong with your resumé and you need to change it.” Assuming you’re applying to jobs for which you’re well qualified, Chartier, principal at The Office of Gregory J. Chartier in Ossining, has a few suggestions for those changes.“Your resumé is a marketing tool,” he says. “Its purpose is to get an employer interested enough in you to schedule an interview.”

Below, his eight tips for getting that interview:

Don’t Leave Anything Out
“When employers see applications that are not complete, they wonder what you are trying to hide,” Chartier says. “And if you are looking for a certain salary and the employer is not willing to pay it, it will come out at some point anyway. So why wait?”

Tailor Your Resumé 
“If you are responding to an ad, make sure that you use the same terms that are in the ad in your resumé or application,” Chartier advises. “A good applicant will tailor his or her response so that their experience more closely fits the requirements.” But, he says, be truthful.

Make Each Part of the App Count
Don’t use different parts of the application to convey the same information, Chartier says. So in your cover letter, don’t just reiterate your resumé in prose instead of bullet points. “A good cover letter will try to answer the question, ‘Why should I interview you?’” Chartier points out. “If there is a story to tell, use the cover letter to tell it.”

Explain Your Work History
“If you have been out of work for long periods, explain why,” Chartier advises. “If you have been unemployed due to the economy, give the prospective employer some idea about what you have been doing while you have been out of work. Did you volunteer? Did you rebuild your house? Did you use your time productively?”

Get Good References
“Coworkers, friends, and relatives are not good references,” Chartier says. “Someone in a position of authority who actually knows your work is a good reference. A letter from the president of the company who did not actually know you or observe your work is not a good reference.”

Don’t Make Things Up
“The most common exaggeration is about education,” Chartier says, “but it’s one of the most easily checked facts. Don’t lie about your education!” (This one seems obvious to us, but, then again, we employ a fact-checker.)

Don’t Oversell Yourself
Most employers won’t be fooled into thinking your previous work was “excellent” just because you say it was. In fact, Chartier says, “the more adjectives and adverbs used in a resumé, the more suspect it becomes.”


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