Resume Advice for Someone Who Wants to Get Back Into PR

Maybe I was a little too harsh here, but this is some advice I recently gave a young lady who did PR in India and then came to the US and has been freelancing as a writer (she says - she lists no clients or examples).  She wants to know how to get a job here in the States.

 Most recruiters decide very fast whether to take the few minutes to read a resume or not (   So you need to get their attention in the very beginning with the most important things.
    1. Your experience doesn't start till more than half way down the page.  It needs to be up on top.
    2.  Use the cover letter for the things about you that you want the recruiter to know, that you're afraid s/he wont figure out himself.
   3.  Make sure all your words are spelled correctly and if English is your second language, have an English speaking person proofread it, even if you're a better writer
    4.  Don't waste space on the page with too much description about things that have nothing to do with the job you want.  (Recruiters see too many resumes and so we lack a certain depth and caring that we might have had years ago.  Because there are so many resumes to choose from we look for "who is doing it" not "who could do it").
   5.  Use the very same words that are in the job description to describe the jobs you have had.  Especially currently.
   6.  The first go around, the recruiter is going to look for buzz words and not going to spend time trying to understand what you do.  So even though you may be a great writer, give them what they need to see.   Use the cover letter or additional materials to show how creative you are.  This (and most of what I'm saying) applies to the recruiter or HR person that first sees your resume.  It does not necessarily apply to the Hiring Manager.  So if your resume is being put right into the hands of the person you want to work for, it might be different.  If they are not seeing a hundred resumes, then they care much more about who you are.
   7.  Keep the resume focused on the things that are germaine to the job you want.  Unless they are able  to demonstrate to the recruiter that it's something you can clearly use in the job you want, even your best successes of the past have to be taken out in order to keep it on point.  This is important for people who are changing fields.

You've done so many things in PR before your most recent job....get those things onto the first page if you can.  Look at the job descriptions and take out what doesn't apply.  Change the wording of what you have done so that it clearly matches the qualities and experience they describe in the job ad.  Don't overrate the intelligence of the person who is reading your resume, or their understanding of what they are looking for.


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