Resumes and Cover Letters that Get
You Noticed
July 26, 2011
Goals for this presentation
•The logic of writing for the employer
•Put yourself in the employer’s place
•What is important to the reader vs. writer?
•The Master Resume/Cover Letter
•The Resume
•The components
•Be sufficiently and relevantly descriptive
•You are your format
•The Cover Letter
•The components
•Context, spin, framework
•Matching to a job
Writing for the employer
•What is affecting the employer?
•Expanded responsibilities
•Lots of applicants
•Remember these factors as you write
•Reader vs. Writer
•What do you value in your resume/cover letter?
•What does the employer value?
•How do we match that up?
•The Master Resume/Cover Letter
•Your memory is not as good as you think it is
•You never know what might come in handy
•Who cares if it’s five pages long?
The Resume – Components
•Contact information
•Name, Street Address, Town, State
•Phone number, E-mail address
•Be professional
•I object to the Objective
•Summary of Qualifications
Certified Workforce Development Professional with 14 years experience
as a Career Specialist. Identify values, develop possible career paths, and
develop strategies for entering a career. Develop individual employment
plans, goal setting strategy, and networking skills. Provide job search and
resume writing assistance, soft skills vs. hard skills analysis, and instruction
on completion of career portfolios. Increased employment placement
rate by 20%. Proficient with Microsoft office programs, and use of
database programs.
The Resume – Components ctd.
•Did you get a degree there?
•Did you graduate yet?
•High school?
Doctor of Physical Therapy, May 2011
Sage Graduate School, Troy, NY
Bachelor of Science in Health Science, May 2008
Russell Sage College, Troy, NY, GPA: 3.9
Masters of Business Administration, Concentration in Business Strategy, May 2011
Sage Graduate School, Albany, NY
GPA: 3.8
Bachelors of Arts in Economics, Minor in Biology, June 2008
Union College, Schenectady, NY
GPA: 3.5; Dean’s List; Scholars Program
The Resume – Components ctd.
•Jobs, volunteerism, community service
•Internships, clubs, professional memberships
•Relevancy must be obeyed at all times
•Other categories
•Certifications, Skills
•Awards, Achievements, Relevant Coursework
Person of Reference Name, Title/Affiliation to You
Company or Organization Affiliation
City, State Zip Code
Phone number (if person is willing to be contacted by phone)
Email address (if person is willing to be contacted by email)
The Resume – Be relevant
•We all start with, “What did I do?”
•“Customer service”
•Ask a question: For whom?
•“Provided customer service for bank clients”
•What services, policies? Results?
•“Resolved consumer problems, explained bank
services and policies, and communicated knowledge
of financial planning resulting in greater customer
•Use action words
•Achieved, collaborated, developed, etc.
•Beware of “Assisted”
The Resume – Your format
•To period or not to period?
•I don’t care but be CONSISTENT
•Hyphens, date formats, job formats, verb tense
•Fonts, capitalization, typeface, sizes, punctuation
•“I right grammar real gud”
•I don’t mean to insult your intelligence but…
•Field specific jargon
•Where these resumes end up
•The immaculate resume and cover letter
•Properly aligned, no mistakes/inconsistencies
•The anal-retentive nutcase = Mike Breslin
•Do not upset him!
The Cover Letter – Components
•What position
•Where did you learn of it
•Don’t be afraid to kiss up
In response to your posting for the Marketing/Promotions Intern,
attached is my resume for your consideration. I learned of this position
through the Career Center at Sage College of Albany. After reviewing the
position description and researching Ticketmaster, I believe this
internship represents an ideal opportunity.
The Cover Letter – Components
•Middle section
•Highlight your qualifications
•Be enthusiastic
•Be relevant
As a sophomore at Sage College of Albany, I have undertaken a number of
courses and extra-curricular engagements that prepared me for this internship.
Majoring in business has helped develop my research, analytical and creative
thinking skills, as it has allowed me to contemplate the relationships between
human behavior and economical, environmental and cultural factors. As part of a
project, I am currently researching how companies effectively utilize branding
strategies and catchy logos to increase their client base and better capture their
target markets. I believe this on-going analysis of corporate markets and the
knowledge I am gaining regarding effective marketing strategies will directly
benefit the Marketing/Promotions department.
The Cover Letter – Components
•The Conclusion
•Reiterate your interest
•Provide contact info
•Indicate next action
•Be aware of the firm’s instructions
I believe I would be a strong asset to the Marketing/Promotions team at
Ticketmaster and would greatly appreciate the opportunity to further discuss my
qualifications with you. I can be reached at 518-333-6565 or via e-mail at
[email protected] Thank you for your time and consideration.
The Cover Letter – Context
•Purpose is to explain your experience
•NOT to restate it
•Provide reasons why you are a fit
•Cite experience to do so
•Cover letter is a writing sample
•What kind of writing does the employer value?
•Concise? Flowery?
•This is a business document
•Address it properly
•Format it properly
•Sign it
The Cover Letter – Matching
•Do not just send out the same letter again
•Match each letter to each job
The job ad asked for:
The cover letter says:
•Team environment
•Develop and maintain
client relationships
•Presentation and research
•Organizational, verbal and
written communication skills
•Strong teamwork
•Organizational and
interpersonal abilities
•Research, analytical and
creative thinking skills
•Marketing strategies
Any questions?
Mike Breslin
Assistant Director, Career Planning
The Sage Colleges
140 New Scotland Avenue
Albany, NY 12208
(518) 292-1793
[email protected]

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