Prepare Your Resume & Ace Your Interview
- Use a professional email on your resume. Unprofessional emails make a bad first impression.
- List current contact information at the top of your resume. Make it easy for an employer to contact you!
- Resume objectives are no longer necessary. They take up valuable real estate on your resume. Use the extra space to highlight some of your accomplishments.
- Make your resume clear and concise; utilize bullet points. This makes your resume easy to read for employers.
- With the exception of a few specialized industries, keep resume to no more than 2 pages. Recruiters are typically reviewing several resumes at once.
- Only include relevant job history on your resume. If you have more than 10 years of experience, it is acceptable to only go back 10 years.
- List relevant volunteer experience.
- Be truthful. Do not falsify your resume. You will most likely be found out and could be terminated from your job if hired.
- Provide only professional references on your resume. Use past supervisors, colleagues, professors, volunteer contacts.
- Review your resume several times for grammatical errors. Have at least one additional person review your resume.
- Don’t apply for a job unless you meet the qualifications. Carefully read the job description and apply only if you hit at least 85% of the requirements. This way you are not wasting your time, or the recruiter's.
- Change your voicemail to something professional and simple.
- Answer your phone respectfully when receiving calls. It could be your future employer!
- Ensure your social media pages are displayed appropriately, or better yet, tighten your security settings!
- Follow directions on how to apply for the position. Recruiters appreciate when you use the correct process.
- Understand where you are going for the interview to be fully prepared. Map your route in advance and account for traffic and parking.
- Arrive 5-15 minutes early. No earlier or the interviewer will feel rushed. If you arrive too early, wait in your car or grab coffee nearby.
- Receive ample rest the night before your interview.
- Dress professionally. Err on the side of being conservative to show you take the interview seriously.
- Do your homework on the company you are applying with. Review their website and the job description.
- Turn off your cell phone.
- Arrive alone to your interview. Do not bring along another person.
- Be polite and cordial to everyone you meet when coming to the company for an interview.
- Come prepared with questions. Asking questions shows you are interested in the company and have done your research.
- Need some ideas?
- How does the company provide growth opportunities?
- What are the common attributes of your top performers?
- How does the company measure success?
- Need some ideas?
- Be prepared for common interview questions.
- Have an idea of specific examples you can give from a previous work history that exemplifies your strengths and what you have gained from that experience.
- For virtual interviews, test your WIFI connection in advance and be aware of what will be visible in your background.
During Your Interview
- Find a quiet location if your interview is over the phone or virtual.
- Maintain eye contact.
- Shake the interviewer's hand.
- Be yourself.
- Show enthusiasm for the position.
- Have a positive attitude.
- Be honest when answering questions.
- Sell yourself.
- Take a moment to think the questions through before answering.
- Give specific examples to questions.
- Show appreciation for the interviewer's time.
- Answer the questions with confidence and humility.
- Keep a phone interview conversational.
- Be mindful of your body language.
- Practice interviewing before coming in for the real thing.
- Don’t talk too quickly.
- Don’t chew gum.
- Don’t use slang.
- Don’t talk about your personal life.
- Don’t badmouth previous employers.
- Don’t digress from your answers.
- Don’t be arrogant.
- Don’t act nervous.
- Send a thank you note via email or card.
- Understand next steps in the hiring process.
- Follow up appropriately if necessary. If the interviewer tells you they will notify you, let them.
- Be available.
- Follow through on paperwork if applicable.
- Reach out to references if applicable.