By Janice Burch, Co-founder, Pro Resume Center
This statement may hold true for many of today’s grads.
The lack of calls and interviews among this group, currently listed as the most unemployed population group in the US, could be rooted in a poorly written resume and cover letter, experts say.
Some are sending out 30 to 40 resumes a week and having troubles just getting an interview.
When grads come to us for help, one of the first things we tell them is to take a good, hard look at their resume, what it is saying and not saying about their abilities and experiences. We find the silly errors like typos are the least of their problems. The bigger issue revolves around not knowing how to market themselves to a potential employer using these critical first impression tools.
Recent stats show that college graduates are today’s most unemployed population group, and angst is heating up among these eager job seekers wondering how they are ever going to pay back student loans, rent an apartment, make car payments and have any cash left over for the weekend.
Today’s job applicants have to think like a marketing expert to present compelling reasons to company recruiters as to why they would be a great hire. If not, their resume will get tossed in the “no” pile.
We have seen so many job objectives where they are busy telling potential employers what the applicant wants out of getting hired, but says nothing about how their skills relate to what the company needs. That’s a problem. You have to think how your skills and experience will improve things for the company, understand your audience. Always be looking for ways to translate your skills and background into value for the potential employer.
A strategic assessment of the resume, cover letter and LinkedIn profile can make an enormous difference for job seekers.
What we also find startling – and pleasing – is how quickly the status changes once our clients have us revise their resume or they follow our tips and advice to update their resume. Things change. They are getting calls and landing interviews. It’s competitive out there and applicants need to stand out, especially college grads who do not yet have much professional experience.
A number of statistics show young people are MORE likely to be unemployed than any other age group and drives home how competitive the current job market is for college grads:
Nearly 6 million young people nationwide are out of school and not working, according to a study by the Opportunity Nation Coalition.
More than 3.5 million Americans work at or below the minimum wage, up more than 50 percent from a decade ago, and government data show that the numbers of minimum wage workers have swollen even among those who hold college and advanced degrees.
The number of college graduates working minimum wage jobs is 71 percent higher than it was a decade ago, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ latest figures. As of 2012, 284,000 college graduates were working at or below the minimum wage, up from 167,000 in 2002.
The Institute for College Access and Success reports that the average class of 2012 graduate left college with $29,400 in debt, a figure that has climbed an average of 6 percent each year for the past four years.
College grads should focus on these primary tips to get out of the job search rut to start getting interviews:
- If you choose to do things yourself, develop a strong value statement for your career profile statement on your resume – this replaces the old job objective
- Focus on the most important skill sets you have acquired with your internships, paid positions, campus jobs, and other experiences. Social media skills? Office management? Software programs? Managing people? Identify it and list it if it applies to the position you want.
- Get a professional looking headshot photo for your resume and LinkedIn profile
- Make sure your resume is error-free and organized in a way that highlights your most important strengths to the position for which you are applying
- Make sure you have a LinkedIn profile with a professional looking profile photo and your interest area highlighted. Recruiters are using LinkedIn more and more to discover potential job candidates
- Develop a website/gallery highlighting important information about you and your work. Shows you know how to navigate social media by doing this.
- Network, network, network. It is powerful and will help you spread the word on what you are looking for. People love to help others – use this to your full advantage.
Today’s job seekers need to be sure they are doing everything possible to make a great first impression starting with the resume to the thank you note, a rocking LinkedIn profile and a website showcasing work and experience to stand out from the rest.
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Pro Resume Center, LLC offers the best resume writing and cover letter services available, along with personal consultations and coaching for every stage of your career. We provide one-on-one service via phone or Google hangouts and Skype with EVERY purchase, connecting you with experienced, seasoned professionals who understand how to strategically position you for job search success. To find out why Pro Resume Center, LLC is the best choice to help with your job search CLICK HERE.
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