Thursday, May 31, 2012

“Just the facts, ma’am, just the facts!”

This was a quote made famous by Detective Sergeant Joe Friday, LAPD, on the old TV serial called Dragnet although you may be too young to remember.

It applies to everyone when it comes to writing your resume. If you try to convey every detail of your work history as you write, you are likely to get passed over. Most people will discard it rather than read it and they will move on to your competition’s resume.

Save the details for your interview. Save them for your biography or your obituary. Focus on crisp, concise, factual statements of your accomplishments (not just what you did, but the results thereof) on your resume.

Hiring managers have problems to solve or they wouldn't be searching for you. Gain their interest by telling them what you have accomplished, or better yet, what the result was. Quantified results are always best because hiring managers are results-oriented and numbers oriented. Their jobs depend upon them achieving results. Show them you are results-oriented too and they will be very interested in you. Your competition is going to!

Add a comment. And get more job search help by visiting or by emailing me at

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Please, don’t send your resume! … unless ...

Unless you meet the ‘must have’ requirements, and you have put the key word requirements you meet into your resume exactly as they are written in the ad, and you make sure your resume can be read by ATS software, and you make your resume easy to read quickly, and you tell what you have achieved in as measurable terms as possible, preferably quantified or qualified results, and you don’t try to fill in space with fluff.

If you want results from applying to positions follow the simple guidelines above.

Doing these things will dramatically improve your chances of getting a positive response. Ignoring them will result in people ignoring you!

Before you apply make sure your resume is 'right'. Make sure it has a good branding statement and core competencies section. These are two places to incorporate key words and phrases found in the job description. Learn how to protect your resume from falling into the 'black hole' of ATS. Refine the resume to pack the greatest punch in the fewest possible words. If you are too verbose, it won't get read. Most important, don't just tell what you did, tell what you accomplished. What were the results of your hard work?

If you like this blog add a comment. And get more job search help by visiting or by emailing me at

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Things your resume writer may not know.

I learned a long time it takes all kinds of people to do specialized consulting. And it takes only a hammer and nail to ‘hang a shingle’ out on the web. You need to find a knowledgeable resume writer or you may suffer the consequences of the ‘black hole’.  Before you spend any money, ask your writer some key questions.

Ask them to describe what ATS parsing can do and cannot do.
Ask them to tell you how word processor programs can cause you to create problems for ATS parsing software.
See if they know how your resume is stored on a company server and how it is ‘read’ by parsing software.
Ask them if they’ve ever been a hiring manager and see if they really understand what motivates hiring managers.
Ask them what things in your resume hiring managers are focused on.
Ask them if they’ve ever been an external (third party) recruiter and if they understand search strategies and can teach you the nuances of each of the various search tactics.

Rest assured, Hooch Resumes can answer all of these important questions and more. If you were to sign up with Hooch Resumes I can give you help with the following: edit your resume to make it ATS-ready and provide you with detailed information that will enable you to keep it ATS-ready as you edit it in the future. I can show you how to create a comprehensive cover letter. And I can counsel you on your job search strategy and tactics (interviewing, salary negotiation, how to pick a recruiter and what you need to know about the recruiting industry, how to find and reach a hiring manager BEFORE you send your resume, how to make cold-calls and how to get past the gatekeepers, how to network properly and how to use job boards and company websites so they actually help you). Visit 

My background includes over 23 years as a hiring manager in technology driven industries plus more than a decade of full service external recruiting. I have been helping many hundreds of candidates with their resumes, cover letters and job search strategies and tactics for almost 14 years and I have followed and kept up with the technological changes that have occurred in hiring practices. I'm here to help. Contact me.

Get more job search help by visiting or by emailing me at

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

On your resume, don’t just tell what you did. Tell me also what the outcome was! Why are results statements on resumes so important?

Think about the people you hope will hire you and what motivates them. Just as all people are different, so are hiring managers. But I’ll make a generalization about them. They are results oriented. If your resume only tells them what you did on each job, they are left with a question, “So what, lots of people do that! What did it accomplish?” If you demonstrate your results in your resume you will capture their attention. If you don’t, your competition will, and guess who loses!          

Most people only write about what they did. That’s a natural tendency. They want to remember everything of importance. And they totally forget about why they did it. There had to be a business reason. Managers don’t just ask people to do things to fill in their time on the job. They have objectives, goals and targets to meet. They need everyone on their staff to perform a function that helps achieve those needs, from the support staff through managers who work for them.

In writing resumes, differentiation is what it's all about. As a job seeker, think about how your work contributed to the success of the organization and write your resume in those terms. By doing so you will differentiate yourself from most other job seekers you are competing with! That's what you want, isn't it?

You think you don’t have a way to state results? Let’s look at some examples from real resumes from people who thought the same and how they were revised:

Original resume: Transcribed office visits and letters for two family practice providers and two OB/GYN providers on a daily basis.

Revised: Provided 24 hour transcription turnaround on office visits and letters for two family practice and two OB/GYN providers on a daily basis.

Original: -Scheduling including company and CEO calendar
-Coordination of all aspects of travel arrangements
-Meeting coordination, including interfacing with hotel event/catering staff

Revised: Assured the CEO achieved all of his daily obligations in a timely and cost effective manner by organizing his schedule and arranging collateral support as required.

Original: Decreased factory accidents and injuries by improving job ergonomics.

Revised: Decreased factory accident and injury incidents 50% by improving job ergonomics.

Original: Provide advanced product and classroom presentations to company Sales and Service representatives and high-volume enterprise customers at the request of the sales mgr.

Revised: Provided advanced product demonstrations to over 10,000 Sales and Service representatives and High-Volume Enterprise Customers in on-site and classroom settings in 7-year period.

Get the point? Ask yourself “Why did I do this? How did it help the business? “

Add a comment and get more job search help by visiting or by emailing me at

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Have you figured out how to tap the so-called ‘hidden’ job market? Think about the purpose of your LinkedIn profile.

There are several approaches to discovering unadvertised jobs. Most of them require some good coaching to execute. But one relatively easy thing you can do is make sure your LinkedIn profile clearly indicates your brand and your value-added assets. This can help you get discovered by those who have unadvertised jobs.

Your resume is an outgoing marketing document. It’s what you use in your job search. Your LinkedIn profile is an incoming marketing document you use to attract those that are searching for you and your talents. Some hiring managers are looking for what talent is available for positions they have not advertised yet and some they don't want to post for various reasons. These are the 'hidden' jobs.

There are outgoing marketing techniques you can use to find them, but don't ignore the incoming marketing side. Your resume and profile are equally important and critical to your success.

Just as there are those who will provide you with knowledgeable professional assistance with your resume, you should also ask them to assist you with your linked in profile. Make sure your profile replicates the critical factors that make your resume a powerful expression of your accomplishments and capabilities.

If you have not revised your resume in years, it’s unlikely you understand what makes a good contemporary resume and less likely that you know how to create a great profile.

Add a comment and get more job search help by visiting or by emailing me at

Monday, May 7, 2012

Have you made sure your resume differentiates you from your competition? There are some imperative things to do.

We all know the job market is more competitive today than it ever has been. More people are searching for jobs than ever in history. As a result, companies are utilizing new technology to pre-screen and disqualify resumes to reduce the cost of recruiting. As a result many resumes never get into the hands of the hiring manager or even an HR rep.

To counteract that outcome you need to learn how to differentiate yourself from your competition and get your resume into the hands of the hiring manager.

Things to do to maximize your chances of getting an interview:

Target your audience.

Make sure you pick the correct type of resume.

Make sure it is in contemporary form.

Create a crisp, concise, complete branding statement.

Make sure you haven’t incorporated ‘fluff’ anywhere in your resume.

Make it possible to read in 30 seconds or less.

Tune it to the target. Be responsive to the hiring managers’ needs - it’s all about you as it should be, but it better show how you are responsive to the job descriptions’ stated needs (the ones you know you fit). Your competition has edited his or her standard resume to reflect the title and requirements of the job description. Have you?

Develop action-packed, value-added results statements that will attract attention.

Have you used a good spell checker and grammar checker? Even if you did, have you done a thorough check yourself to find words that are spelled correctly but used incorrectly. For instance, have you ever typed the word ‘manager’ and left out the second ‘a’? It spells manger. That’s a crib isn’t it? Your spell checker had no idea what you wanted to say.

And finally, will ATS parsing software be able to ‘read’ it? There are lots of neat formatting features in most word processing software. Are you using some of them that might give ATS problems? There are also some attributes other than formatting that will cause ATS issues.

If you like this blog, let me know by clicking +1. Add a comment too. And get more job search help by visiting or by emailing me at

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Want to know how to write an objective without saying “Objective”?

You’ve been told not to include an objective on your resume. This is because most people write mundane, boring, boiler plate, “me too” statements that add nothing that the hiring manager is looking for. In fact they are a huge turn-off! But there’s no reason why you can’t do it creatively and be responsive to a job requirement without saying the word “Objective”. 

Incorporate what you want to do into your well-written branding statement that provides the job you want with key words that are responsive to a specific job description.

Here's an example: Senior Sales Manager focused on turning around declining sales in the food and health product industries. This says what you are, what you do, even what industries you have experience in. Add a table of core competencies and you have defined your brand as well as your objective.

Another example: Sales and Marketing Manager focused on achieving exceptional results in highly competitive situations requiring growth and turnaround.  Diverse domestic and international experience. Tenacious commitment to driving revenue, profit, and market share by bridging the gap between strategy and execution excellence.  Highly principled relationship builder and team leader who empowers people to create cultures of success where team and individual accountability result in winning organizations.   Areas of excellence in:

§  Restructuring/Turnaround
§  Strategic/Tactical Planning
§  P&L Management
§  Sales/Marketing
§  Multi-Cultural Collaboration
§  Mergers and Acquisitions/Due Diligence
§  Business Transformation
§  Revenue and Profit Growth

Professional resume writers will tell you objectives are out, branding is in, and they’re right. Try being a little creative to get your message across.

If you like this blog, let me know by clicking +1. Add a comment too. And get more job search help by visiting or by emailing me at