I see tons of resumes and have done a lot of interviewing for internship positions, so I have experience on the hiring side of business. Here are five big things you need to know about applying and interviewing for a job:
- File names are fair game. When you attach a rÃ©sumÃ© or portfolio with a misspelled or vague file name (John’s_resume.doc or articles.doc or even lame_portfolio.pdf), it’s another mark against you. If your material isn’t round-filed (a.k.a. thrown in the trash), it’s probably sent to the bottom of the pile.
- Always correctly spell the name of the person you’re applying to. It’s polite, professional, and shows attention to detail. If someone doesn’t take the time to spell my name right, then I think they’re probably not qualified to edit and are going to be lazy on the job.
- Bringing a hard copy of your rÃ©sumÃ© and/or portfolio in person used to be a must. Now you should always follow the application directions perfectly, and only bring a hard copy in person as a follow-up.
- Don’t include an “objective” in the beginning of your rÃ©sumÃ© unless it’s something specific, interesting and long term. If it’s a generic objective like “to gain valuable knowledge and experience,” then leave it out.
- If you’re applying right out of school and don’t have a lot to put on your resume, add classes or specific class work. Four years of math is not interesting, but if you took discrete mathematics then it shows that you have some interesting skills and are willing to challenge yourself. However, only list the classes or projects that may be relevant to the job you’re applying for. Engineers will not care about the ballet class you took.