for a Job
and application forms. Résumés and application
forms are two ways to provide employers with written evidence
of your qualifications and skills. Generally, the same information
appears on both the résumé and the application form, but the way
in which it is presented differs. Some employers prefer a résumé
and others require an application form. The accompanying box presents
the basic information you should include in your résumé.
many ways of organizing a résumé; choose the format that best
showcases your skills and experience. It may be helpful to look
for examples on the Internet or in books at your local library
or bookstore. Typically, an employer has a very limited amount
of time to review your résumé. It is important to make sure it
is clear and concise, and highlights your skills and experiences
effectively through the use of formatting, ordering, and headings.
scan résumés into databases, which they then search for specific
keywords or phrases. The keywords are usually nouns referring
to experience, education, personal characteristics, or industry
buzz words. Identify keywords by reading the job description and
qualifications; use the same words in your résumé that are used
in the job ad. For example, if the job description includes customer
service tasks, use the words "customer service" on your résumé.
Scanners sometimes misread paper résumés, which could mean some
of your keywords don’t get into the database. So, if you know
that your résumé will be scanned, and you have the option, e-mail
an electronic version. If you must submit a paper résumé, make
it scannable by using a simple font and avoiding underlines, italics,
and graphics. It is also a good idea to send a traditionally formatted
résumé along with your scannable résumé, with a note on each marking
When you fill
out an application form, make sure you fill it out completely
and follow all instructions. Do not omit any requested information
and make sure that the information you provide is correct.
letters. A cover letter is sent with a résumé
or application form, as a way of introducing yourself to prospective
employers. As with your résumé, it may be helpful to look for
examples on the Internet or in books at your local library or
bookstore, but be sure not to copy letters directly from other
sources. Your cover letter should be original, capture the employer’s
attention, follow a business letter format, and usually should
include the following information:
- Name and
address of the specific person to whom the letter is addressed.
for your interest in the company or position.
- Your main
qualifications for the position.
for an interview.
- Your home
and work telephone numbers.
If you send
a scannable résumé, you should also include a scannable cover
letter, which is created similarly to a scannable résumé, by avoiding
graphics, fancy fonts, italics, and underlines.
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