We got a chance to talk with Brian about his experiences searching for a new job and creating his resume. Check out what he had to say below!
What were you looking for in a job when you started your search?
I was about to begin my last quarter of graduate school at Ohio University. The job market is very competitive now, but I hoped my pending MA and a desire to work internationally would help put me over the top. I was lucky in seeing a Peace Corps Response position that interested me and fit my background. Those positions are only open to Returned Peace Corps Volunteers which meant the total pool of competition was much smaller.
What did you hate most about the job search process?
Cover letters are the worst part of the job search. You spend a couple of hours going over it and honing your wording, but if no one reads it, that’s wasted effort.
How long did it take to land a job?
I was lucky. My background was a perfect fit for the position I applied for. Unfortunately it started about a month before I finished my degree program. My professors really went to bat for me and allowed me to finish my coursework early. The total time between applying and leaving for Eastern Europe was about two months.
How or where did you originally learn to write a resume?
I had a good English Comp teacher at Copiah-Lincoln Community College who really put us through the paces on writing everything. I’m fortunate that not too much has changed from what I learned there, although everything varies more now by employer.
How did Resunate help you find success on your job search?
The process of adding everything to Resunate was a little daunting. I had to go through and add in details and remove duplicate entries, etc. The end result was worth the effort. While the finished resume was a little longer than I liked, everything I wanted was there. Then I was able to delete and adjust things line-by-line. It was helpful, too, to be limited to the few default templates Resunate uses. Writing a resume in Word, you can end up with almost anything. It’s hard to know just how to prioritize things. If you don’t get it right, you probably cost yourself a job interview. With Resunate, I felt confident that people would see my resume in a format they liked or were at least familiar with. It was the first time I was completely satisfied with the resume I submitted.
What was the most helpful feature of Resunate for you? Why?
The best feature of Resunate is the ability to manage exactly what appears on your final resume. I admit to fighting their system a little initially, but once I understood how to make it work, I realized it was very powerful. I didn’t have to worry if it brought over jobs that weren’t applicable to what I was applying for because I could easily delete them.
What advice do you have for other job seekers?
Getting hired is a special kind of alchemy. Each resume has to be just right so the person reviewing the applicants will notice it. I think a shorter resume is better and hate to ever have more than a page. It needs to be cleanly laid out, too. Small text will go unread. Make sure you highlight your best skills, but don’t fib about them. Most of all, make sure you apply for jobs you actually want to do. The more passionate you are, the more that will come through to the people doing the hiring.
Have you found similar success on the job search after revamping your resume? Let us know in the comments!