As was foretold, we've added advertisements to the forums! If you have questions, or if you encounter any bugs, please visit this thread: https://forums.penny-arcade.com/discussion/240191/forum-advertisement-faq-and-reports-thread/
Options

Efficient job searching?

DrakeonDrakeon Registered User regular
edited May 2011 in Help / Advice Forum
Hey, was wondering if anyone had some tips on job searching? I'm (desperately) trying to find a job that will actually utilize my bachelors degree (or just a bachelors degree) and will pay me accordingly (aka, better than $9 an hour that i make now). However, I live in California (near Sacramento, which has 12% unemployment...) and the situation is kind of dire here. I'm not opposed to moving out of state for a job, but I don't really know how to look out of state (although if push came to shove, I'd rather be somewhere near where I live now). Some other useful info: My bachelors is in Criminal Justice, and im not opposed to working a job that isnt in the field if theyd have me, but again, having a hard time finding said jobs.

A few more background notes: When applying, I usually send a cover letter, a state application (i apply to a lot of state jobs), a printout of list eligibility (all state jobs require this), a photocopy of my transcripts (most require this too), my resume, and 2 letters of recommendation, one from a former professor and one from a former boss who was in state government.

I also use Monster.com and Careerbuilder.com, but I can't really find anything there thats useful to me.

I know its tough out there for basically everyone, but in an effort to avoid getting depressed about not finding anything that i really can do about my situation, nothing new to apply for, etc. I turn here, hoping that H/A can maybe spare a little advice on something I'm not doing or im doing wrong, or somewhere I'm not looking.

PSN: Drakieon XBL: Drakieon Steam: TheDrakeon
Drakeon on

Posts

  • Options
    Skoal CatSkoal Cat Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Care to post some of your resume? It might need some fixin'.

    Skoal Cat on
  • Options
    DrakeonDrakeon Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Skoal Cat wrote: »
    Care to post some of your resume? It might need some fixin'.

    Sure, ill post it in a bit, its on my desktop and i dont have access to it at the moment.

    Drakeon on
    PSN: Drakieon XBL: Drakieon Steam: TheDrakeon
  • Options
    DrakeonDrakeon Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Hmm, maybe i should've just read the other thread about jobs in california. I have been thinking about dispatcher positions too (dont require a bachelors degree, but they do pay well, so i dont necessarily care). Anyone have any experience with those? I'm looking up typing certification in my area now, since I need that. I'd link to the job posting, but the website is ancient and all java based, so i cant really.

    Drakeon on
    PSN: Drakieon XBL: Drakieon Steam: TheDrakeon
  • Options
    finralfinral Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    The thing I keep hearing is to volunteer to get experience. It's going to suck for awhile, but in theory, it can open up doors.

    finral on
  • Options
    DrakeonDrakeon Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Heres the google docs link to my resume: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1b9L0iFjmv6jzz_oKX1BMTxbGMV1v7n8hLrkSkVrC1V0/edit?hl=en&authkey=CNmWyXI

    Kinda hastily removed my address, name, phone numbers and email due to not wanting that to be out there.

    Drakeon on
    PSN: Drakieon XBL: Drakieon Steam: TheDrakeon
  • Options
    facadesfacades Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Everyone has their own opinions on resumes. I'll just give you a few pointers based on my own experience (used to work HR for Corporate Legal at Disney).


    1. Take out the objective portion, as everyone pretty much puts the same stuff there, and it doesn't differentiate you. At Disney, we spent about 30 seconds per resume, tops, for entry level positions.

    2. Based on the position, put what you want the employer to see first. If you're applying for a criminal justice oriented job, put your degree/GPA information first, as a 3.8 is very solid. I'd add if you were on deans list, or any other academic achievements on there as well. So in the reverse, if its a non-criminal justice position, perhaps put your work experience first, in reverse chronological order.

    3. I would put the internship with the CA Department of Justice under another heading, like "Internships/Volunteer Experience" or whatnot.

    4. Generally, if you could add any tangible accomplishments, that would be great. Like at work, if you implemented anything successful, or if you were able to accomplish something that you can point to and say "look, here is a time I made a difference," that could help.

    5. I'm in law school now, and on law school resumes, we add an "Interests" section. Supposedly adds a human touch, makes you likable and memorable.

    Good luck man! Looks like you have good experience and a good GPA, hope it works out for you.

    facades on
  • Options
    DeebaserDeebaser on my way to work in a suit and a tie Ahhhh...come on fucking guyRegistered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Your skills are filler. Drop the line "Great teammate" as it sounds very retail and downmarket. In fact drop that entire section. It's garbage. If you actually have "Strong research, problem solving, and analytical skills" show that in your work history, back it up. Replace with:

    Skills
    [STRIKE]Expert technical skills ([/STRIKE]MS Office: Word, Excel, PowerPoint[STRIKE], internet, desktop, etc.)[/STRIKE]

    Put your education at the forefront of your resume. You are still a recent grad with negligible experience.

    Deebaser on
  • Options
    DrakeonDrakeon Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    So another question, is it bad to have 2 pages for a resume? Because I was under the assumption it was. I like the interests idea, but I dont know where I could fit it in and keep it to 1 page still.

    I removed the objectives per your suggestions, as well as getting rid of some of the other stuff you guys suggested.

    Also, would anyone have any suggestions on what to do with a cover letter? I can post the a copy of the ones im sending (most of them are similar in language, just change a few bits).

    Drakeon on
    PSN: Drakieon XBL: Drakieon Steam: TheDrakeon
  • Options
    DeebaserDeebaser on my way to work in a suit and a tie Ahhhh...come on fucking guyRegistered User regular
    edited May 2011
    As a recent grad you should stick to one page. Leave out interests.

    Deebaser on
  • Options
    SixSix Caches Tweets in the mainframe cyberhex Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Two pages is fine if you have enough content for it to be worthwhile. I don't think you do.

    You have "Teamwork – worked well with managers, supervisors and other team members" in every job. That's pretty useless - you're better off listing projects or operational tasks you were involved with that required teamwork.

    Take out the dedication for each section. Use the space to describe your duties.

    You list leadership experience - where is it?

    Six on
    can you feel the struggle within?
  • Options
    Skoal CatSkoal Cat Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Drakeon wrote: »
    So another question, is it bad to have 2 pages for a resume? Because I was under the assumption it was. I like the interests idea, but I dont know where I could fit it in and keep it to 1 page still.
    You have a crop ton of empty white space. Drop the entire thing into a series of tables and work on your formatting, I bet you can get it to work. On one of my recent resumes I had an interest/personal skill section on the bottom divided into three short columns, all next to each other. Held a lot of info, made it look good, and didn't take up much room. I also regularly have my name, phone number, and e-mail address on the same line (with my name much larger for formatting's sake). I don't put my address on there, because people don't need it to want to hire me and it takes up valuable space.
    Remove "references available upon request." They know they are, its just taking up space.

    I'm going to stress layout. Your resume just looks boring as hell and my eyes aren't drawn to any important information.

    Skoal Cat on
  • Options
    Skoal CatSkoal Cat Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Here is a blank copy of my resume as a formatting example.
    https://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&pid=explorer&chrome=true&srcid=0Bz4sPJEI7NbWNTllMzBiNTUtMWRjMC00M2VjLWIwOTAtODk3ZjlmYzRkOTRl&hl=en&authkey=CICRo7QG
    The personal statement up top can be hit or miss, I use it to make up for my lack of professional experience.

    Skoal Cat on
  • Options
    MichaelLCMichaelLC In what furnace was thy brain? ChicagoRegistered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Drakeon wrote: »
    Heres the google docs link to my resume: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1b9L0iFjmv6jzz_oKX1BMTxbGMV1v7n8hLrkSkVrC1V0/edit?hl=en&authkey=CNmWyXI

    Kinda hastily removed my address, name, phone numbers and email due to not wanting that to be out there.

    Do you put that on your regular resume?

    I have my resume on Monster, Indeed, Dice, CareerBuilder, LinkedIn. All with full phone-book info, and honestly it's the only reason I've gotten any jobs - all from recruiters who found me on-line. Something to consider. Get a Google Voice number if you're concerned.

    No underline - OCR can have trouble with it. Differentiate with bold and font size, italics if you're feeling frisky. Actualy just cut the underlined words all together.

    For Safeway, don't mention when you were promoted - just use your current title. Also the start date should be August 2009?

    Give examples and numbers. So instead of, "effectively packed and delivered customer grocery purchases, and operated cash register in complex, high volume grocery store", it should be,
    "Received 25 comment cards for excellent customer service." and
    "Managed $10,000 in daily transactions with less than 2% error at 20 item per minute."

    Education should be broken out just like the jobs, since they're at different schools, and spell it out, don't abbreviate:
    California State University, Sacramento, CA 2010
    Bachelor of Arts, Criminal Justice

    MichaelLC on
  • Options
    Skoal CatSkoal Cat Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    I suspect he doesn't want his personal contact info associated with his name on this forum, not that he doesn't have them on his resume.

    Skoal Cat on
  • Options
    MichaelLCMichaelLC In what furnace was thy brain? ChicagoRegistered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Skoal Cat wrote: »
    I suspect he doesn't want his personal contact info associated with his name on this forum, not that he doesn't have them on his resume.

    Yeah probably is the case, hope I wasn't coming across wrong; just saying if they are concerned about the info, unfortunately it may be required (posting it on the job sites).

    On personal information and jobs, don't give out your SS unless they've made you a definitive offer. If it seems shady, it's better to walk than deal with stolen ID.

    MichaelLC on
  • Options
    HorusHorus Los AngelesRegistered User regular
    edited May 2011
    As your getting feedback you may to start getting overwhelmed with information given and the lack of content you need.

    This is my approach and worked for me:
    1. Free write your resume, have a basic structure and put every thing you have where it applies. This is your way of putting everything there. If you have no idea what to say, look for similar resumes in your field profession to get an idea what skills needs to be said.
    2. Become a resume editor trim that sucker down to a solid resume
    3. Have professional peers you can trust review it and give advice.
    4. Rinse and repeat
    5. Create an email for just job searching and begin creating accounts
    6. Don't wait around volunteer, network and put your self out there.

    Also read up on typography for resume to better structure your resume and make it look clean (I am a professional so just brush up on this topic)

    Horus on
    “You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You're on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go...”
    ― Dr. Seuss, Oh, the Places You'll Go!
  • Options
    Forbe!Forbe! Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    http://www.lifeclever.com/give-your-resume-a-face-lift/

    Read this and give the design of your resume an overhaul. A well designed resume can set you apart from the rest of the potential hires. What I am suggesting is simple things, such as using some basic design principles to improve the aesthetics of your resume, not to add clip art or choose drastic format changes. Being a recent graduate, your resume should be one page long. Save your resume as a PDF as well as a word format. PDFs are just super convenient to send and will look the same on every machine, unlike other document types. And in this day and age, most places are able to read PDFs.

    Just reading your resume, you should probably switch a few things up. I'm not entirely sure about the division of things into 'Customer Service, Communications, Teamwork, Dedications, Leadership' etc. Potential employers will probably get tired of being told the same information in a few different ways.

    This:
    "Customer Service – effectively packed and delivered customer grocery purchases, and operated cash register in complex, high volume grocery store
    Communications - professionally answered customer inquiries and handled special requests
    Teamwork – worked well with managers, supervisors and other team members
    Dedication - ensured store was well maintained and clean at all times
    Leadership/Learning – quickly and successfully completed all training; analyzed how my contributions could help meet the needs of the business"

    or This?:
    Packed and delivered groceries
    POS Operation
    Provided excellent customer service
    General store maintainance
    Working in a team environment

    You should keep several versions of your resume saved:
    Master Resume: Everything you've ever done that will ever be relevant to a potential employer. Skills, education, work history, etc. You might not use all of it, but at some point you may need it.
    Tailored Resume: Resumes made specifically for certain fields you would like to work in. Highlight skills that are important in this line of work.

    Forbe! on
    bv2ylq8pac8s.png
Sign In or Register to comment.