From the Northeastern Section of the ACS, focusing on career management and development

June 2020
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Improving Chances for Interviews: Tailor Your Resume
Filed under: Position Searching, Public Relations docs, Recruiters
Posted by: site admin @ 9:11 am

Hi Dan,

 You are back! :)
 Hope you had a nice vacation (?).

 I visited the acs website you sent me, and under CCP I requested you to be 
my consultant. 

I was at the Biospace career fair in Burlingame and forwarded my resume to 
some small companies, such as Vaxgen, Cotherix, Codexis.

 At the fair I also submitted my resume and cover letter to Gilead 
Sciences. I applied for a Sr. Research Associate position (synthesis).

 Moreover, I talked to Bayer Healtcare’s people (from engineering, 
manufacturing and also to the hiring manager of R & D).  The engineering 
guy turned out to be a german guy, called G, with whom I had a nice 
conversation. He suggested me to start from analytical chemistry 
department. So I talked to the R&D person, E. She was interested in my 
analytical background and german skill. She gave me her business card and 
asked me to e-mail her my resume. I did that already on thursday.
 I was searching online for some analytical jobs at Bayer Healthcare and I 
then contacted G to find out about the specific tasks. We should talk 
on the phone some time next week.
 Before coming to the fair, I didn’t consider Bayer, as they don’t have any 
openings for someone with my background. Now, I am also open to analytical 
work. I will keep you updated.

 I as well talked to two scientific recruiters, and after the fair I 
e-mailed them my resume, as requested. I have an appointment with one of 
them on Monday, October 30th, 2006. We will have a detailed conversation 
about my qualifications and interests. I think it is not a bad idea to 
have the recruiters to find me a position.

 That’s pretty much what was significant all this time.

 Your comments and suggestions are always welcomed.



2 Responses to “Improving Chances for Interviews: Tailor Your Resume”

  1. site admin Says:
    Hi T,
    Terrific, you have done some job exploring in
    person that seems like will lead to interviews.

    Please consider some items about your resume
    and working with recruiters (next reply).

    We have talked, both in San Fancisco and on
    the phone, about tailoring your resume to the
    job descriptions of positions for which you are
    applying. John Marcus in WSJ states things
    pretty well.

    “A resume can either open doors or keep them closed.”
    A revised resume can begin opening doors where
    the first draft seemed not to hold reviewers’ interests.
    What can be improved upon?
     specific clear display of accomplishments
     clear choice of words
     describe my skills and abilities that interest reviewer

    “While these are valid concerns, there’s a greater issue.
    Never assume that people are going to read your
    resume because the fact is that most resumes get
    only a passing glance. You must do everything possible
    to spark immediate interest during that moment.”

    Marcus highlights six do’s and don’ts to follow when
    composing your document.

    1. Have a Highlights at the beginning.
    “Showcase two or three of your most exciting
    accomplishments. Bullet these items and use numbers
    to illustrate their extent.”
    [Refer to ones related to the position in your cover
    letter, which should be with each resume submittal.]

    “2. Use a chronological format.
    The next section of your resume relates to your experience.
    Always list your experience in reverse chronological order,
    starting with your most recent job.”

    3. Tailor your resume to the job you’re seeking.
    More can be done to strengthen your candidacy within
    the chronological format.
    … always cite your activities in order of their importance to that job.
    … Omit information that’s unrelated.
    “If you’re seeking two or three different positions,
    prepare two or three separate resumes, each tailored
    to the job you’re after.”

    “4. Focus on your accomplishments.
    …Discuss your accomplishments, not your responsibilities.
    Recruiters and prospective employers are primarily
    interested in the value you’ve brought to your past

    “Always look for opportunities to show how you
    exceeded expectations…” 

    “5. Use descriptive verbs. [See article for list.]”

    “6. Make your resume appear organized and not overly
    stuffed with text.”

    Now, the Don’ts. What you shouldn’t do when writing
    a resume is nearly as important as what you should do.
    “1. Don’t simply list many accomplishments.” Organize them.
    “2. Don’t use the same words to begin sentences or use
    the words “I” and “my.”
    “3. Avoid clichés. Don’t use “dynamic,” “people-oriented,”
    “results-oriented” or “self-motivated,” or state what a
    great “out-of-the-box thinker,” “hands-on leader”
    or “visionary” you are.’
    “4. Don’t use underlining or italics to add emphasis.
    These devices cheapen a resume’s appearance.
    Additionally, some computer scanners can’t read
    underlined or italicized copy.”
    “5. Avoid using a fancy font to gain readers’ attention…
    choose Arial, Garamond, Helvetica, Tahoma or
    Times Roman.”
    “6. Don’t state the reasons for your job changes.”
    Hope this helps, T.

  2. site admin Says:

    Hi T,           RE: Working with Recruiters
    Sarah Needleman
    has written a neat article on working with recruiters
    in WSJ.

    Although the focus is on executive positions, she
    points out some helpful items. Highlights:

    “Should you approach more than one recruiter at a time?
    Yes. It’s always beneficial to have a broad and
    robust network, so you can get different perspectives
    and feedback. There will be different opportunities
    in different places. Be targeted about who you’re
    reaching out to. It’s important to build relationships
    with those who specialize in your area of expertise,
    because they will be working on searches likely to
    interest you the most. ”

    “When talking with lower-level candidates with an
    eye on the corner office, what impresses you most?
    I’m always impressed by someone who is really
    clear about what they want to do.”

    “Candidates who have a high level of confidence
    and energy generally stand out. They know who
    they are and what they bring to the table and they
    show that they’re really interested in the next
    opportunity and what the next step might be.”

    “If you’re not happy with a pay offer, what’s the
    best way to indicate this?
    This is why it’s important to build relationships with
    recruiters, so you can be comfortable with being
    candid and straightforward about pay. Recruiters
    are there to help you be successful in the
    negotiation process.”

    “When talking to candidates, what’s a common turn-off?
    When you say you’re going to send additional
    information and don’t follow through. Not
    following through can be a deal-breaker,
    because it can give the impression that you’re
    not interested in the opportunity and that’s
    how you conduct yourself in business.”

    When unable to meet a commitment or response
    in time ‘you need to do in that case is drop a
    quick note to say you’re not able to get to it
    today, but will next week.’

    “Another turn-off is when you call someone
    about a search you’re working on, and they
    don’t return the call. Maybe it wasn’t the right
    opportunity for them, but it’s important to call
    back, because you show that you’re responsive
    and interested in building a relationship with
    the recruiter. If you’re not interested in the
    opportunity, the conversation will probably
    turn into one about you and your career. It’s
    just another opportunity to strengthen the
    relationship between you and the recruiter.”

    – Ms. Needleman is associate editor at
    See article for more discussion.

    T, this tells a bit about their expectations of
    job seekers.
    Hope it is helpful.

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