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Resume Speak from Recruiters & HR Professionals

I recently had the opportunity to attend a panel presentation which consisted of recruiters and HR professionals from the local area (Target, Peace Corps, Cargill, Larson Allen and others). One of the topics they talked about was resumes.

They were asked, "What on a candidate's resume sets them apart from other candidates and puts them on the 'yes' pile?" The answer was suprisingly basic, but very useful:

* The resume is professionally formatted and well-written.
* Has absolutely NO errors (see Susan Gainen's post: http://blog.lib.umn.edu/lawcso/vocare/2006/05/no_interviews_got_typos.html).
* It is comprehensive and complete.
* Reflects the candidate's most transferable skills.

One of the resume issues raised was the problem they were experiencing with the electronic application process. Most of the employers who accepted electronic applications felt that far too many applicants didn't read the directions before clicking the 'send' or 'upload' button. While some of the organizations want Word (.doc) files - others prefer PDF files. And still, many employers will only receive text files (.txt). As a result of not preparing the document correctly, either the application materials don't make it through the system or the documents are unreadable (wingdings, random characters, etc.).

For more comprehensive resume advice and tips, visit CPDC's Career Files at https://inside.law.umn.edu/cpdc/careerfiles