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Resume Tips That Will Get You an Interview

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Not getting any interviews? Maybe it's your resume. How does yours stack up against the competition? A few things to keep in mind:

* Your resume is your marketing tool to get interviews.

* Don't underestimate the value of a well-formatted resume! If it is poorly formatted no one is going to read it. So all that great experience and wonderful skills you have may go unnoticed.

* A well-formatted resume must also have great content. This is your chance to concisely document your experience, accomplishments, and skills.

* The most important information should be in the top third of your resume - and that is your career-related experience such as teaching/student teaching experience. If you are a new college grad you'll want to have your education section before your professional experience. You want to entice the reader to keep reading. If you don't have the important information that they are looking for in the top third of your resume, they aren't going to keep reading. Realize how valuable this "real estate" is on your resume and use it wisely.

* Always target your resume to the job you seek. Look at the position description and be sure to emphasize those requirements in your resume. You're not likely to be called for an interview if you didn't do this.

* Make sure that your resume is free of typos and grammatical errors. You'd be surprised how many are not, and those end up in the "no" pile.

* Always have multiple people review your resume - your college career center, professionals in the field, colleagues. And if you know that a particular principal wants things on a resume that you feel are counterintuitive, by all means, follow his/her advice if it means getting an interview. For instance, references should be listed on a separate page, but I have had students tell me that the principal where they did their student teaching said to put them on their resume before submitting it.

It's a very competitive job market and having a stellar resume is one way to increase your odds of landing more interviews.

Pamela Folger
Director, Career Center
Millikin University
Decatur, Illinois


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