Proofreading Your Resume

March 20th, 2018

Last week we discussed how to create a winning resume.  The final step, polishing your resume via a thorough proofing is so critical that we decided to focus an entire blog on it.

Begin with a break. Yes, you finally finished creating this oh-so-important document. Now put it down for a couple of days. If you read it immediately, your eyes will “read” what your brain knows you meant and can easily miss errors.

The break is over. Print your resume out – seeing it in different format helps your eyes to see mistakes, and then read it out loud. Hearing what you wrote is a great way to catch those common mistakes – like writing “you’re” instead of “your.” Read it slowly – line by line, word by word. You’ll be more apt to catch an error. Reading it backward is another trick.

Be on the lookout for these common resume mistakes.

  • Grammatical and spelling errors – the #1 way to kill your resume. This includes:
  • Homophones, such as two, to, too
  • Using and for an
  • Apostrophe errors
  • Subject and verb agreement
  • Using the wrong tense
  • Inconsistent formatting. Follow the same pattern of indents, bullets, highlights, etc. throughout your document.
  • Information overload – limit your content to what’s relevant.
  • Wordiness – if a section is too long, try to reduce it 10% and then reduce again – concise content with power words pack a powerful punch.
  • An objective or summary that fails to match the job description.
  • Telling (presenting a list) rather than showing (documenting with specifics).

Don’t depend on your eyes alone – have a colleague check it too. Consider using a reliable online program, or better yet, a professional service.

Finally, your resume is finished, proofed, and ready to go. There’s one more crucial step.

Follow directions on where/when/how to submit your resume for a specific position.

Your resume shows how much your road to professional success matters to you – or doesn’t. It reveals your more than your skills and experience. It also indicates essential character traits, such as diligence and commitment to detail.  Following the resume-building steps in last week’s blog and taking time to proofread will help you create a winning resume every time.

Don’t forget – bring your resume to Olympic Staffing. Together, we create a strategy that leverages your career goals, education, and work experience.  We work with a variety of companies and industries to maximize your exposure and opportunities.  We take the time to understand your unique talents and qualifications to place you in the best career opportunity.  We maintain ongoing communication with you even after you start your new position. Contact us today.


 

Winning Resumes

March 13th, 2018

Creating a winning resume isn’t easy – in fact, it’s downright challenging. On the other hand, the payback is terrific. Taking time to perfect our resume may very well be the boost your job search needs. These tips will help you get it accomplished.

Getting Started

There’s more than one way around the mountain – so choose the best way for your education, skill set, and work history.

  • Chronological: A fact-based resume listing your employment history (and corresponding accomplishments) in order from most recent to past.
  • Functional: Highlights abilities (with corresponding positions) instead of work history. Present your skills by category – in order of relevance, rather than by a timeline of accomplishments.
  • Combination: This combines functional and chronological by first highlighting your most pertinent skills/experience, followed by a chronological work history.
  • Targeted: Tailors any of the above types to a specific position. Customizing resume’s bullet points and skills to the job position, using keywords from the job description and rearranging resume’s sections to highlight your most relevant experience. Targeted resumes take time, but it pays off – especially when applying for jobs that are a perfect match for your qualifications and experience.

Choose a font that is easy to read – this is not the place to get creative and quirky – unless you’re applying for a position where creative and quirky are crucial aspects, such as graphic design.

Make contacting you simple. Include all – yes all – of your contact information.

  • Full name, street address, city, state, and zip.
  • Phone number.
  • Email address.
  • LinkedIn profile or professional website or blog – if you have them.

Getting Your Point Across

Don’t think of your resume as a “list” your skills, experience, and education. Think of it as an advertisement – you are convincing a company to choose your product – YOU.

  • Back up your skills with specific accomplishments that demonstrate those skills. Use power verbs to describe those accomplishments -quantify whenever possible – numbers talk!
  • Provide specific examples that highlight your leadership skills and present evidence that you’re a team player.
  • Include any awards or recognitions you have received for accomplishments directly and loosely related to your industry – or to skills that are pertinent to the position.
  • Show how you have continued to learn and grow. In addition to certifications you’ve earned, include industry-related seminars, conferences, etc. that you have attended – anything that contributed to your professional development.
  • Include a bulleted list of core competencies – customize it to keywords and phrases from a general job description for your industry or, better yet, to a specific job description when targeting your resume.

Polish Before Submitting

Don’t skip the final step – Proofread. Proofread. Proofread.  We’ll show you how in next week’s blog.

Bring your resume to Olympic Staffing. Together, we create a strategy that leverages your career goals, education, and work experience.  We work with a variety of companies and industries to maximize your exposure and opportunities.  We take the time to understand your unique talents and qualifications to place you in the best career opportunity.  We maintain ongoing communication with you even after you start your new position. Contact us today.

 

 

Win the Job Search  

February 13th, 2018

It might be a talent-driven market, but the job search road can still be full of bumps and potholes. If you want to smooth out the ride and win the race (there are other seekers who want that same job), then you have to prepare, work hard, and never give up. Here are some Olympic tips for you – after all, we’re on your team.

Build a support network: You need people – to offer help, connections, and accountability. Attend events. Connect with old friends, while building new connections. Don’t forget, genuine networking is as much about helping and giving as it is about receiving.

Conduct a self-evaluation: Make a list of your strengths and identify your skillsets. Find ways to hone them. Take a class, volunteer, attend a seminar. There are multiple ways to build your value.

Clean up your digital image: It’s easy to post a pic in the moment of enthusiasm with your friends or spout off a hot response to a situation or comment from the security of your home, but unfiltered postings can come back to haunt you. Pay attention. Pause and ponder before posting.

Tackle your LinkedIn profile: Update. Update. Update. Have you won any awards, completed any classes, scored any special achievements? Include them in your profile. Pay attention to keywords and phrases that pertain to your industry and include them in your headline, summary, and experience sections – in appropriate ways, of course.

Refresh your resume: Keeping your resume updated and ready to go gives you one up on the candidate who is scrambling to add all their latest achievements, correct their contact info, etc. Of course, being ready to go means having your resume ready to customize to a specific position – a must-do if you want to get the best position for you.

Sign up for automatic job alerts: You can do this on LinkedIn, as well as various job boards.  Choose selected job titles and keywords to narrow your alerts to pertinent openings.

Prepare for Interviews: Research. Rehearse answers to typical questions. Arrive on time. Dress appropriately. Be courteous and respectful – to everyone. Have a few questions ready for the interviewer. End with a verbal thank-you and follow-up with a written one.

Partner with Olympic Staffing: Together, we’ll create a strategy that leverages your career goals, education, and work experience.  We work with a variety of companies and industries to maximize your exposure and opportunities.  Helping you achieve your career goals is Olympic’s priority. Contact us today.

Research the companies who have openings. Read the reviews, news articles, history, etc.  Get a glimpse of their culture. It will be easier to prepare for an interview.

 

 

 

The End of the Interview Questions

December 26th, 2017

You made it – the interview is closing, and you’re feeling pretty comfortable with how you did. But, there’s one last hurdle – “do you have any questions for us?”

Frankly, you need to have four or five questions ready and let the direction the interview went help you decide which one to ask. Better yet, ask two.

Here’s a list of questions that will help express your interest in the company and the job, reveal that you did your research, and give you insight into the opportunity that will hopefully be yours.

Questions that show your interest:

  • Who do you think would be the ideal candidate for this position, and how do I compare?
  • Beyond the hard skills required to perform this job successfully, what soft skills would serve the company and position best?
  • What are the challenges of this position?
  • What qualities are the most important for doing well and advancing at the firm.
  • Is there anyone else you would like me to meet?
  • Can you tell me what steps need to be completed before your company can generate an offer?

Questions that reveal you did your research:

  • I saw that your company recently announced _______ What does this latest major development mean for the future of the company?
  • I saw on LinkedIn that you have been with the company for a while. What do you like about working here?
  • I see that ______ and _______ are your major competitors. What do consider the top three things that makes your company the best choice?
  • I read _____ (something positive) about your CEO in Business Insider. Can you tell me more about this?

Questions that give insight into the job opportunity:

  • If you were to hire me, what might I expect in a typical day?
  • Can you give me an example of how I would collaborate with my manager?
  • What type of employee tends to succeed here? What qualities are the most important for doing well and advancing at the firm?
  • Where do you see the company in three years, and how would the person in this role contribute to this vision?

If you’re looking for a new job, contact Olympic Staffing. We can help you find a new job that is a good fit for your skills, education level, and current job goals. Our network is deep and wide – let us help you.

Revitalizing your Resume in 3 Steps

December 19th, 2017

If you want to keep growing professionally, keeping your resume cleaned up, on target, and ready to go at a moment’s notice is oh-so-crucial. Here are tips from Olympic Staffing to pull your resume together and be noticed. It’s a simple as 1 – 2 – 3.

  1. Know your career goals and ensure that your resume objective shouts it.
  2. Compose a tight, descriptive summary that covers the education, training, skills, and experience that supports your ability to reach that career goal. This is your chance to grab HR’s attention and keep them reading.
  • Cover the essentials – the information that rocks – and slash out all the fluff that everyone can do. Focus on what makes you the #1 choice for the type of position you’re seeking.
  • Give specifics – rather than say you can do such and such, give an example of how that talent made an impact in a past position.
  • Tailor your skills to align both with your goals and with the job description of the position you’re seeking. (All within the realm of honesty, of course)
  • Use power words and be unique. A little buzz is good, but too much sends your resume to the slush pile.
  1. Share your vision. It’s not just about education, skills, and experience. Share your life philosophy.
  • What’s your global view?
  • Where do you volunteer?
  • Share your thoughts in a way that expresses your personality and ideal work culture.

When you have that resume ready to go – contact Olympic Staffing.   We can help you find a new job that is a good fit for your skills, education level, and current job goals. Our network is deep and wide – let us help you.

Be a Pro-Community Company

December 5th, 2017

Every company is part of their community and can play a crucial role in promoting the greater good of that community. Investing in your community is an excellent way to give back to those who have helped support your business.  The holidays are a great time for giving, of course, but be a consistent giver: Community needs exist year-round. 

Ways to Give:

  • Share Financially: Set aside a specific percent of profits to go to charities. People respond positively when they know that patronizing their business of choice also means they are helping others.
  • Share your Time: Even when the economy is down, and finances are tight, company owners, management, and staff can be actively involved in their community by giving of their time.
  • Share your Expertise: Business owners and management can often offer a wealth of knowledge and experience to local organizations and individuals who cannot afford to pay for it.
  • Involve Employees: Encourage your employees, clients, and suppliers to participate through matched giving or personal involvement. Many of your employees may already be active in local charities. Find out where they are or would like to be, donating time and expertise. Organize company involvement in those charities.
  • Partner with Community Leaders and local organizations: When specific events are occurring in your community, partner with community leaders and local organizations to promote and conduct the event.
  • Support Local Economy: Although there are many ways a company can support their community, perhaps one of the best ways is by doing local business.

Olympic Staffing, a pro-community company, is committed to our clients and our community. If you’re looking for a new employee, contact Olympic Staffing. We can help you find an employee in sales or any department, who is perfect for your company culture and who will be a good fit for your fellow employees.

Hire The Best Seasonal Workforce Ever

November 28th, 2017

Hiring a seasonal workforce can be stressful because the holidays are enough of a stressful time already. Luckily, there are several ways in which you can circumvent these stresses to be able to hire the best seasonal workforce possible for your company.

Start Early.

The most crucial factor in hiring a phenomenal seasonal workforce is that you need to start early. If you haven’t already, get your help now because people do need time to prepare their plans for the holidays. Plus, a lot of companies need to hire seasonal support at the same time, so if you don’t start early, you very likely could run out of options for engaging reputable employees.

Be Clear About the Expectations.

Sometimes, seasonal workers come in expecting full-time hours and benefits. You do need to be perfectly upfront about the hours, time commitment, length of the seasonal employment, and anything else that could be relevant for anyone who might be applying to work for your company. When you’re clear and upfront, you won’t run the risk that people will leave because they’re confused or upset.

Have a Comprehensive Training.

It can be confusing when you’re introducing in new employees to your company, especially when you’re in a time crunch. Even though it could be tempting to rush training for the sake of onboarding everyone on time, you need to take the time to train everyone correctly and to make sure that they don’t have any more questions.

If you’re in need of a new employee to work for your company, contact Olympic Staffing. We will be able to help you find an employee who is a good fit for your business and will perform the job optimally while still being an excellent fit for your company culture.

Why You Should Have Two or Three Resumes

November 21st, 2017

If you’re looking for a new job and are like most employees, you have one resume that you update as you need to. This is fine, but you should take into consideration having two or three resumes if you don’t already. Why? Well, the reasons to have more than one resume are numerous:

You Will Be More Versatile.

No matter what type of job is on the docket, you will always be prepared. It helps to have multiple resumes go for this very reason, and so that you can showcase certain parts of your career path or education depending on the type of job or position that is being offered.

You Will Always Be Prepared.

Don’t get caught off-guard by not having a resume ready to go when a new job/position comes to fruition. When you have two or three resumes and keep each one current and updated, you can always be ready to go – increasing your chances of having a resumes directly correlated to finding and obtaining the position you want.

You Can Highlight Different Aspects About Yourself.

No person can fit into a box, and for this reason, you should have different resumes to help you highlight the various aspects about yourself. For example, you may have one resume that plays up the managerial side of your career, another one that plays up the administrative angle of your career, and finally, one that builds on your technical skills. It can be advantageous to highlight specific aspects if you’re applying for a particular job.

If you’re looking for a new job, contact Olympic Staffing. We will be able to help you find a job that is a good fit for you both professionally and personally that is a good match for your current career skill set and future career goals.

Reasons Why You Didn’t Get an Interview

June 27th, 2017

Sending out resumes and not even getting called in for a job interview can be frustrating. Knowing why your resume isn’t getting you through the door is a critical step in finding a good job.

Make Sure Your Resume is Readable.

The first thing your resume has to do is open so the hiring manager can read it. Some companies won’t accept attachments, or only have software to open certain types of attachments. Check the website carefully to make sure you are submitting your resume in their preferred format; otherwise, it might not get read at all. No company is going to interview you until they see your resume!

Make Sure Your Resume Can Be Understood.

Once you make sure the prospective employer can read your resume, make sure it’s legible and easy to read. Beware the dreaded “wall of text” effect. Break up sentences and paragraphs into easy to read bullet points. Use bold tactfully to highlight sections and important keywords.

Are You a Good Fit?

Managers get a lot of resumes, and generally, they only have time to skim over them to see if they are a good fit. This way they only interview people they will want to hire. Read job postings carefully and make sure your resume fits the job. If the job post requests specific skills and experiences, your cover letter should mention those skills. Then ensure the resume highlights them in a way that is easy to find.

Update Your Contact Info.

This one may sound obvious, but every hiring manager can tell you of an instance where they read a perfect resume, decided to call the candidate in for an interview, and could not find a phone number or e-mail address. Be accessible if you want those call backs.

If you’re looking for a new job, contact Olympic Staffing. We can help place you in a job that is a good fit for your career goals and matches up what you’re currently seeking.

Spruce Up Your Interview Attire

August 23rd, 2016

If you’re interviewing for jobs, you know how important it is to present yourself well – both as a means of respect and as a way to show you take it seriously. If it has been a while since you’ve been on an interview, there are a few quick-fix updates for your wardrobe and accessories to spruce up your interview attire.

Wear a Watch

People underestimate the value of wearing a watch. Not only will a watch tell you what time it is so you can be early for your interview, but it also conveys a very important message to your interviewer. Wearing a watch tells your interviewer that you prioritize being on time for your commitments to the point that you want to have a visual reminder every day. And since your phone should NOT go with you into the interview, you need the watch. Wearing a watch also gives you the opportunity to have it match your personality so your interviewer can get a little more insight into who you are as a person.

Accessorize Your Notebook or Folder.

Many individuals forget that everything they bring into an interview is a way for the interviewer to judge them and make a perception about them. While this can be nerve-wracking for some, it’s also a great opportunity to stand out where other candidates may have failed to do so themselves. One great way to update your interview attire is to accessorize your notebook or folder. Instead of bringing in a plain paper notebook or plastic school folder, try bringing in a nice leather padfolio or clipboard.

Shine Your Shoes. 

This is a bigger deal than you might think. While your interviewer might not notice that your shoes are shiny, they will definitely notice if they aren’t. Some HR tips even suggest that managers can assess the quality of the potential candidate by the quality of their shoe care.

Ready to start interviewing? Contact Olympic Staffing. We specialize in matching your skills and job experience with the job that’s the best fit for you.