Robert Half Blog

Resumania: Rumpelstiltskin Impersonators Need Not Apply

Posted by Robert Half on Sep 15, 2014 9:43:58 AM

rumpelstiltskinPoets and novelists often use complex metaphors to further a reader’s understanding or to highlight important ideas, but crafting a cover letter or resume is not an exercise in creative writing.

Use a straightforward approach when contacting prospective employers. After all, a busy hiring manager simply does not have the time to search for the hidden meaning of your message.

The following job candidates made some odd comparisons:

Topics: Job Search, Resume, Resumania, Cover Letter

Resumania: Keep Sweating the Small Stuff

Posted by Robert Half on Sep 8, 2014 6:05:00 AM

mistakes_in_resumeOne incorrectly used term. One transposed letter. One misplaced punctuation mark. That’s all it could take to cause an employer to question your professionalism and attention to detail. And that’s why it’s so critical to carefully review your resume and cover letter.  

Relying on spell-check alone is problematic because the program won’t necessarily flag every type of error. Proofread on screen and on paper, and ask a friend or family member for feedback. Fresh eyes can catch tricky mistakes you overlooked.

Topics: Job Search, Resume, Resumania, Cover Letter

Resumania: Yo! Don’t Do This With Your Resume or Cover Letter

Posted by Robert Half on Sep 2, 2014 6:05:00 AM

resume_slangThere are many ways to address a prospective employer. “What’s up?” probably isn’t the best option. “Hey!” and “Yo!” aren’t any better, but some job seekers continue to take an overly casual approach.

Writing in a relaxed tone is an easy trap to fall into considering today’s texting culture. But your resume and cover letter must convey your professionalism and an understanding of proper business etiquette, so avoid using abbreviations, slang and colloquialisms. These job candidates were far too informal:

Topics: Job Search, Resume, Resumania, Cover Letter

Resumania: Does Your Education Section Make the Grade?

Posted by Robert Half on Aug 25, 2014 5:05:00 AM

education_on_resumeIt’s back-to-school season. As students across the country return to the classroom, it’s an appropriate time to take a good look at the education section of your resume. Here are the ABCs of writing and formatting your academic credentials:

Topics: Job Search, Resume, Resumania

Resumania: Bad Jokes Are No Laughing Matter

Posted by Robert Half on Aug 18, 2014 6:03:00 AM

RH_Blog-Bad_jokeWhen applying for a job, aim to present yourself as a highly qualified candidate – not a comedian. Yes, having a sense of humor can be helpful to your career, but there’s a time and place for it.

While it’s acceptable to inject a little personality into your resume and cover letter, don’t fill your application materials with jokes or sarcasm. Humor doesn’t always translate well on paper, so it’s generally best to stick to the facts.

Topics: Job Search, Resume, Resumania, Cover Letter

Resumania: Craft Compelling Cover Letter Conclusions

Posted by Robert Half on Aug 11, 2014 10:43:27 AM

RH_Blog_cover_letter_closeWhen it comes to cover letters, it’s important to write a compelling, attention-grabbing opening sentence. But to leave prospective employers with a favorable impression, you also must craft a solid conclusion.

Consider using your last sentence or two to reassert your strong interest in the position and suitability for both the role and company. And, of course, make sure your conclusion is free of errors. As the saying goes, “Good to begin well, better to end well.”

Topics: Resumania, Cover Letter

Resumania: ‘Miscellaneous’ and ‘Other’ Matters

Posted by Robert Half on Aug 4, 2014 10:06:38 AM

RH_Blog_Resume_MiscellaneousCompelling content about your qualifications or trivial tidbits that have nothing to do with, well, anything? Guess what a hiring manager is more interested in?

We’ve previously written about why you shouldn’t focus on hobbies in your resume, but you’d also be wise to avoid including a “Miscellaneous” or “Other” section.

If you struggle to find a place on your resume for a certain piece of information, it’s probably a good sign you don’t need to include it.

Topics: Job Search, Resume, Resumania

Resumania: Why to Put a Spotlight on Your Soft Skills

Posted by Robert Half on Jul 28, 2014 4:00:00 AM

RH_Blog_soft_skillsTop-notch people skills aren’t merely preferred by employers today — they’re now expected for most roles. 

Because attitude is everything on the job hunt, don’t just focus on your technical qualifications when crafting your resume and cover letter. Emphasize those increasingly pivotal soft skills, too. These strengths might include the ability to lead a team, negotiate, build consensus or resolve conflict.

Topics: Job Search, Resume, Resumania, Cover Letter

Resumania: Thank-You Notes Should Be Proofread, Too

Posted by Robert Half on Jul 21, 2014 11:08:21 AM

RH_Blog_Thank_you_letterAsk job candidates to name the most important part of the hiring process, and a common answer is likely to be the interview. But many applicants forget that what they do after the interview also impacts how employers perceive them. For instance, 91 percent of managers said it’s helpful for a candidate to send a thank-you note following an interview, according to a survey by our company.

Promptly showing your gratitude displays good etiquette. It’s also a smart way to again express your interest in the job and re-emphasize the relevant skills that qualify you for the role. But as with your resume and cover letter, your efforts will backfire if you fail to proofread your thank-you note or take the wrong tone. Here are some thank-you note mishaps we’ve collected over the years:

Topics: Resumania

Resumania: Don’t Go Old School

Posted by Robert Half on Jul 14, 2014 1:52:10 PM

RH_Blog_education_on_the_resumeThe prominence of the education section of your resume relates to where you are in your career. If you’re a recent graduate, for example, it makes sense to place education-related information near the top of the document. But as your work history develops, details about your academic career should move toward the bottom.

Employers are more interested in your recent professional accomplishments than scholastic achievements from years ago. These experienced professionals included dated academic details:

Topics: Resume, Resumania, Cover Letter