Applications, cover letters, resumes, references and thank you notes are all reflections of your current skills and how well you follow directions. Each piece of your marketing toolkit serves a distinctive purpose. Marketing materials either lead you to, or take you away from, the interview table!
TIP: Unlike your resume, you don’t pick and choose “what” to document. All questions on an application require answers. Most information can be taken directly from your resume.
TIP: If your application, a legal document, requests all employment within the last ten years, that means everything must be included – even the ones you’d rather forget. Gaps require explanations.
Dates, job titles and job descriptions are requested, but people often make things up. Educational accomplishments and salaries shouldn’t be exaggerated as facts are easily checked. Remember, research is the key. Retrace exact details of your employment history by contacting Social Security Administration or Texas Workforce Commission.
Considered companion pieces to resumes, digital applications often request cover letter uploads or copy/paste options. Some applicants ignore this request and move on. Ignoring this option says a lot about the applicant. The cover letter is a one page business letter that closes with a plan of action!
TIP: Ask the employer for an interview! When the option to upload cover letters presents itself – take action and do so!
Easily the most misunderstood document of the marketing toolkit, the resume carries misconceptions. The resume doesn’t take the place of an application; both are required. The resume is based on job specific skills.
TIP: Gaps between employment, salaries and reasons for leaving are not included. Addresses and zip codes are also not included. Resumes rely on knowledge, skills and abilities (or KSA’s)
- Usually, more than one targeted resume is necessary and encouraged during job search skills training through Workforce Solutions.
- Skills Development Seminars
The employer concentrates on all references but focuses heavily on professional ones.
TIP: Coach all references by reviewing your resume with each person chosen. Professional references should have different, detailed stories of your skills that can be easily recalled when questioned.
TIP: If your reference is slow in calling you back, returning texts or emails – choose a more reliable source elsewhere. After all, this is business. Your business!
Information Cyber Space and Networking
Foul language, cyber-bullying and inappropriate posts or photos can permanently destroy all integrity through social media.
TIP: Don’t assume privacy because you alone hold the password. Revisit all social media accounts to double check content! Networking is still the best way to find employment. You’ll need a clean electronic footprint!
See detailed discussion on Day 5 of our Boot Camp!
TIP: All documents should be mistake free including spelling, punctuation and formatting. Keep copies of resumes and applications near any phone that may be used for telephone interviews. You would be amazed at what you forget once nerves start to kick in.
Join me for tomorrow’s discussion – “Any Questions?”
Frieda Carmouche is a member of the Regional Navigator team specializing in training, educating and assisting employers, and career center staff throughout the Gulf Coast with community resources, outreach events and technical support in assisting job seekers with disabilities. A native Houstonian with a love of training and development, Frieda has been employed by Workforce Solutions for over 16 years.