Dear Mr. Walberg: I am attaching my current resume for your resume critique service. Friends of mine tell me it reads strong to them, however I feel it needs some work because I haven’t gotten a single hit yet. I am an RN with an MS in Nutrition and Food Systems. I am applying to a few hospitals, but want to be able to send it to other employers if jobs become available. — T.E. in Alabama
Dear T.E.: Thank you. Your resume is strong, however I will recommend a few changes.
I would change the font to Times New Roman for ease of reading. Although Comic Sans, your current font, is attractive, it isn’t as easy to read. In a resume, it’s better to be plain, and understood.
I am suggesting a new format that uses the entire page, rather than the one you are using that leaves a lot of the left side of the page blank. The advantage is balance to the reader and more use of each page reduces the length of your resume.
I would eliminate any “Objective,” unless you are responding to a specific job opening and can name that job title in the “Objective.”
In its place I would recommend a section called “Summary of Skills,” which will highlight your abilities relevant to the positions you are applying for.
We will strengthen your resume, but you must also strengthen your use of it. If you are relying on Internet postings and advertised job openings, you are missing many opportunities. You must network with everyone, including friends, family and even neighbors, social and professional groups, and try to develop insider contacts at hospitals and corporations that need chefs and nutritionists.
Be ready and able to make changes in your resume for different employers, targeting your skills and abilities to their needs.
Make contact with employers that your research shows needs your skills, not just to employers who are posting job openings. Sometimes jobs become available only after you have managed to make yourself known. Be an assertive salesperson, marketing your strengths to employers who need your skills and abilities. If you wait for job openings, your wait could be lengthy.
Be assertive; be creative; believe in yourself and your abilities ... and do what others fail to do!
Marvin Walberg is a job-search coach based in Birmingham, Ala. For contact information, see marvin-walberg.com.