How to retool your resume


by Mia Gradney / KHOU 11 News

Posted on September 3, 2012 at 8:10 AM

Updated Monday, Sep 3 at 9:03 PM

HOUSTON -- So many Houstonians, whether unemployed or underemployed, are working hard to find a good job.

Longtime administrative assistant and customer service representative Julia McAfee is constantly working to improve her resume.  “I have my resume and a couple of jobs that I’ve searched and found.”

Now the real work begins, according to licensed career counselors Rachel Eddins and Joan Mullinax.  “You need to have something that presents you powerfully, that can get people’s attention, and that will make them want to read the details,” says Mullinax.

Your resume should be concise and to the point explains Rachel Eddins, “for a resume it’s either one full page, not ¾’s of a page, or two full pages.” One page is sufficient for up to 10 years of experience.  Use an attractive easy to read format and focus on what you can provide versus what you want recommends Rachel.

Rachel says to ask yourself the following when penning a new resume, “What did I actually contribute to an organization, If i compare myself to another person what are some unique things I brought to the table, changes I’ve made, initiatives I’ve taken as I’ve been in this position,”  she also adds, “ to quantify as much as possible.  She stresses the use of key words too, “You would say achieved, accomplished, led, you know.  You want to start your sentences with an action verb.”

Certain words are key to getting a possible call back, especially if the employer utilizes a scanning program. Rachel explains, “If they have that software, a larger organization would be more may be more likely to have that software or a third party.  So, it is common that first pass. good sign is if you’re going into a database, If they say, hey go apply online in our database then that very well likely could be scanning.”

You can’t review your resume enough for type-o’s.  After all, your resume is your marketing tool.  Whatever you do… don’t overlook you cover letter.

Rachel says, “Once they’ve sort of interviewed some people, kind of narrowed down some candidates, that sort of thing, that’s when they may be looking at the cover letter.”

A crafty cover letter along with a strong resume could help you get hired.

For more resume writing tips see: