Sunday, March 9, 2008

Your Resume - It's You on Paper

Is your resume up-to-date? Is it free of typos and grammatical errors? Is it honest? We try to be honest individuals, right? When it comes to job searching, we need to be honest on our resumes also.

Several months ago, there was contractor who applying for a opening we had on our IT team and his resume listed experience in data recovery which caught my and my manager's attention. As we conducted the telephone interview, the individual was going on and on about how he had experience doing data recovery, speaking in very general terms but nothing specific. I didn't think anything of it.

We decided to hire him and on the first day, we discovered that he knew nothing about data back-up/recovery. In fact, he had no knowledge of what files or folders to look for. I had to spend more time training him while reminding him to take notes so that the steps we followed didn't have to be repeated. Guess how long he lasted on the job?

Interestingly, his resume listed years of experience with data recovery so why couldn't he 'catch on'? We came to conclusion that he lied about himself - on paper and in person. Whether it was him updating his resume or the agency that that sent him to us, keeping your resume up-to-date includes being honest about yourself.

If your resume states that you're familiar with, say for example, Dream Weaver, then that should be the case. Sure, you may not have a certificate in it or you didn't actually attend a software class for it, get the software, download it on your computer and become familiar with it so that when you state that you know it, you really do. If not, don't bother to list it on your resume.

Your resume represents YOU - point blank. When prospective employers see that you have Dream Weaver listed, they may very ask you questions about it and if you can't answer their questions, you've ruined your chances in that interview and to be further considered for that job you applied for.

Why polish our resume with lies and misrepresentations? Instead of making ourselves look good on paper, we're actually making ourselves look bad in person. Which do you think is worse?

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