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1 ResumeEdge » Michelle K. | ResumeEdge Tue, 28 Jul 2015 19:16:17 +0000 en-US hourly 1 What things you should remove or change on your resume right now! Tue, 28 Jul 2015 19:16:17 +0000 Maybe you haven’t refreshed your resume in a while; or ...

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Maybe you haven’t refreshed your resume in a while; or maybe you have, but you’re still not getting the hiring managers attention. Here are a few quick ways to update your resume without having to do a complete overhaul.

Fonts– Make sure your font is professional. Often times people try to use one that looks different, however ‘different’ isn’t better in this situation. It’s best to use these fonts: Times New Roman or, if you want a bit of flair, Georgia offers an alternate option that still captures that traditional look; You can try Arial, Calibri or even Garamond for an old-time style. Changing to a different font can give your resume a quick and professional refresh.

Spell check– Do the obvious and make sure your resume is error-free. It’s always a good idea to read aloud and to have someone else read as well.

Drop the references line– It’s not necessary to have “references available upon request” on your resume. If the employer wants to check them, they will request them. Until that time, just have your list ready.

Include numbers- It’s a great idea to include numbers in your resume, however be certain they are listed in numerical form – it will help draw the recruiter’s attention!

Keywords– Make sure that you’re including the keywords that are directly in your target job description. Failing to do so is an easy missed opportunity.

Verbs– Use powerful verbs, however remember that a little goes a long way!

Dates– If you have been out of college for 5 or more years, you can go ahead and remove the graduation dates. Employers aren’t supposed discriminate based off of age, however it can, and does, happen. Don’t let your resume screen you out of an interview. At a minimum you want to get yourself in front of the team, where we know that you’ll dazzle them!

Formatting– Make sure that your resume is aligned and that all bullet points are consistent. Also, ensure that your headers and footers match, if using more than one page.

These are just a few quick ways to refresh your resume. If you still need help, or even a complete overhaul, you might request the help of a resume writer. ResumeEdge editors can help you with your resume needs and they will make sure your resume is a show stopper!







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What’s the difference between a CV and Resume? Wed, 15 Jul 2015 15:56:20 +0000 CV and Resume are the same thing right? In the US and C...

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CV and Resume are the same thing right? In the US and Canada we call it a resume and in Europe they call it a CV and, at the end of the day, it’s all the same, right? Well the answer is no….they are different! So how do you know which one to use and what makes them different

CV. We will start by explaining the CV, or Curriculum Vitae, (translates to ‘course of life’ in Latin). This type of document really showcases on in-depth level on achievements and accomplishments, primarily within academia. CVs work very well for persons pursing positions in academics and/or research, because it focuses on projects and teaching. CVs do need to be updated frequently, as it’s more of a living document. Overall, a CV is lengthier than a resume- they can vary from 2 pages, for someone starting out in graduate school, to more than 10 pages for someone who has many years of experience and a long list of publications or projects. Typically, the information is laid out in reverse chronological format.

What information is housed in a CV? Your CV will include education, grants, publications, research projects, professional memberships, employment experience, contact information and your references.

Resume. A resume is a concise document used to showcase your work experience and work-related accomplishments. A resume will highlight your skills and experiences as it relates to the position for which you’re applying. Keywords are huge in a resume and will help to make it past the recruiter’s screening process. Resumes are typically 1-2 pages in length- anything more will be too much with this type of document. Typically, resumes are accompanied by a cover letter, as the cover letter will be a quick read that ‘sells’ the candidate and gives some highlights as to why they are the best candidate for the position and why the hiring manager should look no further. A resumes formats can vary. There are functional formats- which will highlight your skills and experience; chronological formats- which will list your skills and main achievements (sorted by date starting with the most recent); or an endless blend of the two primary formats- whereby the focus is spread across both functional and chronological order to present a different focus for a targeted audience.

What information is included in a resume? Name and contact information, work experience, achievements and education.

When to use which type of document. You will want to use a CV when applying for research positions, education, academic, scientific, fellowships, grants and international positions. For other types of positions you will use a resume.

I hope this helped to shed some light on the differences and, when in doubt, you can ask for the assistance of a professional resume writer and they will help you to determine which will work best.


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Why leaving short-term employment off your resume is a bad idea Wed, 17 Jun 2015 19:42:51 +0000 When crafting your resume you may ask yourself if you s...

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When crafting your resume you may ask yourself if you should omit short-term employment. You didn’t work there very long, so it shouldn’t matter, right? Well, it does matter! Whatever the reason may be, it’s important to eliminate gaps on your resume, otherwise it may appear as if you have something to hide.

Gaps in employment are a bad sign

I know that you may have a good explanation as to why you have a gap in employment history, however you need to make sure to explain this in your resume. You may have been laid off and had to take a contract position that only lasted a few months; maybe you decided to take a different career path, or took classes or an internship to gain experience in a different field. Whatever the reason, make sure that your resume shows this and conveys what you were doing to the recruiter.

Highlight accomplishments

One way to really put a positive spin on your short-term position is to focus on the accomplishments that were gained during your stint. Maybe you learned a new skill or learned to navigate within a new industry. Make sure to show how it connects to the new position and what newfound skills you’ll bring to the role.

Review your career history

Take a look at your career history and make a list of the important aspects. If there are gaps, how did you spend your time? Are you able to tie these activities to the position you’re seeking? Maybe the short-term position doesn’t relate to the new position- include it, however try and keep the focus on other more related roles.

The point is to make sure that you’re eliminating gaps and keeping the focus on what you can bring to the table. A good idea is to have a great cover letter! A great cover letter highlights what you’ve done and are how you’ll be able to transfer your skills into results within the new position. At the end of the day it’s important to be honest and be prepared to explain your short-term employment during the interview. You must be able to explain what you have learned from your experiences and how this makes you a better candidate.

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Your Resume Template Does Matter! Tue, 02 Jun 2015 15:59:44 +0000 Choosing the right resume template is just as important...

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Choosing the right resume template is just as important as the content found within. While sifting through hundreds of resumes, when I come across an aesthetic mess… well, I won’t even bother digging in to see what the content really says.

Catch their attention

With so many applicants applying for a single position, you have to demand attention. The first way to do this is via your resume. You need to stand out from the crowd by presenting a professional document (Clean, succinct and free of errors).

Avoid these mistakes to gain attention

Select fonts such as Ariel or Times – trying to use other fonts will only get you into trouble. Often times other, less frequently used fonts are difficult to read or, even worse, the recruiter’s software may not recognize the font and it’s altered (altering your intended format) or even thrust into the lovely world of ‘wingdings’.

If you need a two page resume, by all means have one – don’t try and cram everything onto one page! Not only will it be hard to read, but your resume will be too difficult to quickly disseminate if you are the candidate for which they’re looking.

White space is very important! This give the recruiter’s eyes a chance to rest between paragraphs. When one reads, it’s just like speaking, and smashing everything together is like speaking a mile a minute. It’s nice to take a pause and give the reader a chance to digest what’s being said.

Finally, make sure to select a template that showcases your experiences. The idea is to present your background in an attractive, easy-to-read format that is also appropriate to your field. Don’t try and write a ‘super creative’ resume, unless you’re a design major. And, as always, when in doubt you can always reach out to a company that specializes in resume writing. They will craft a resume that will demand the attention you’re looking for and that will help to land the job.

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How to Gain a Workplace Sponsor Wed, 13 May 2015 13:56:28 +0000 One of the greatest determinants of success for ambitio...

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One of the greatest determinants of success for ambitious middle level managers is the existence of a sponsor. Sponsorship, unlike mentorship, is a two-way street in which protégés and sponsors depend on one other to help each of their careers. A protégé offers her sponsor exceptional work product, loyalty, and a unique view of team and company dynamics; she can help him fulfil his goals and build his legacy. A sponsor provides his protégé with visibility, access to key projects, and the path to promotions and pay raises. While on the surface, sponsorship seems more advantageous to protégés than the other way around, the protégé needs to keep in mind she has a lot to offer. A confident mid-level professional is much more likely to attract sponsorship from a top level manager.

If you are looking for a sponsor (and you should be!), make sure that the sponsor you pursue has the respect of company leaders and is effective in pushing ideas through political channels at your office. He will then be able to enhance your professional stature. And although it’s nice to enjoy spending time with your sponsor, affinity isn’t critical. But trust is. Without trust, you can’t develop a healthy working relationship.

Once you have targeted a potential sponsor, look for opportunities to network or work on projects and committees with him. Collaboration will be the best method of you getting to know each other. And the ideal way to convince your potential sponsor to continue building a working relationship with you is to demonstrate specific talents that will benefit him. Do you have strong relationships in another part of the company which will be helpful to him? Do you have creative skills that complement his more analytical nature? What are the unique talents that your past managers have recognized? Whatever they are, market yourself by highlighting these abilities through your work and your discussions.

And since political winds change in the workplace, it’s best to develop sponsorship relationships with a few senior managers. You may consider one of them your primary and the other your secondary. But having two sponsors will protect you from having one become marginalized through a management change or from him leaving the company altogether.


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How to Stand Out During Your Coding Bootcamp Application Tue, 14 Apr 2015 14:40:18 +0000 How to Stand Out During Your Coding Bootcamp Applicatio...

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How to Stand Out During Your Coding Bootcamp Application

By Joseph Rauch, writer at SkilledUp

If you enroll in a coding bootcamp — an intensive eight- to 12-week program designed to take you from coding newbie to hirable programmer — you’ll be on a fast track to a rewarding and high-paying programming career, where you can help close the vast coding skills gap and develop apps and websites.

But that’s only if you can make it past the application, which ranges from a simple phone call and payment to requiring an essay submission, interview, and coding test. More selective bootcamps will require at least one of the latter, and will always take into account your online presence.

To help you dominate these application processes, SkilledUp reached out to dozens of bootcamp staff and asked them what helps applicants make the cut. Keep reading for actionable tips so you can get into the best bootcamps.

  1. Have a Stellar Online Presence

LinkedIn — All of the bootcamp administrators SkilledUp spoke to said they checked candidates’ LinkedIn profiles and general online presence before accepting them. In fact, the quality of your online presence can make or break that decision.

This means it’s not just enough to have a LinkedIn profile. It should be tight and easy to scan.

“I’ve seen a lot of beginners write paragraphs explaining their skills and experiences,” said Chris Beck, lead mentor at online coding bootcamp Bloc. “Do the recruiter a favor and create a list of skills in your profile’s summary section so the recruiter can quickly scan them.”

Even if you are applying to a coding bootcamp that doesn’t require basic coding skills from the start, you should still make your LinkedIn profile complete yet scannable by citing skills up front. Recruiters expect the same from your paper résumé.

GitHub — If you have previous coding projects, show them off on GitHub. Think of it as the programming version of your LinkedIn page.

“Make sure your projects are named appropriately and that they each have a README that is clear, articulate, error-free, and professional,” Beck said. “Just like a LinkedIn profile, make sure your contact info and photo are professional and up-to-date.”

Other Platforms — None of the administrators SkilledUp spoke to mentioned other portfolio platforms or social media platforms on their list of places to check. Nonetheless, having a significant following on Twitter or Instagram will certainly not hurt you, especially if you frequently post about programming.

Graphic and web design work is also worth showing off on sites such as Behance, Dribble or Cargo.

  1. Show Your Passion with an Essay or Short Answer

“Passion makes a huge difference,” Mimi Bouhelal, program manager of RocketU, told SkilledUp. “We can see the effort reflected in the essays.”

SkilledUp also collected essay and short answer samples from the Epicodus and Ironhack bootcamps. All of the accepted essays and short answers had three elements:

  • Demonstration of passion for coding and noncoding related work
  • Storytelling
  • Demonstration of soft skills relevant to bootcamps and programming work, such as leadership, teamwork, ability to adapt quickly, etc.

The content is most important, but your prose should at least demonstrate that you can communicate and care enough to edit your submissions.

“A strong applicant gives answers about why they are applying,” Bouhelal said. “They use good grammar and writing, and show they can express themselves and be team players.”

Click here to see the complete bootcamp essay and short answer samples and tips from SkilledUp

Try a Video as Well, or be Prepared for Video Interview

Some bootcamp applications will require a personal essay and video, or just the video. Or perhaps they’ll suggest a video submission without requiring it, in which case you should definitely do it. In fact, some coding bootcamps such as Coding Campus prefer videos over essays.

“We’ve found that video is a much better way of getting to know applicants, especially for getting an idea about their ‘soft skills,’” said Michael Zaro, CEO of Coding Campus.

But it’s not just any kind of video. Bootcamp administrators such as Zara prefer video interviews where candidates aren’t merely talking to a camera and reading from a script.

“To dig into any questions from their initial application, get some data on an applicant’s soft skills, and to see if they are a good personality fit, we hold separate video interviews with each applicant,” Zara said. “Presentation ability isn’t a bad thing, but we’re trying to get at their ‘real self,’ so a live interview is much more informative than a rote video where applicants try to put their ‘best self’ forward.”

This isn’t the case with most coding bootcamp applications, but you should be prepared if you want to enroll at a place like Coding Campus where recruiters value videos and video interviews.

  1. The Value of a Good In-Person Interview

SkilledUp spoke with Startup Institute, a selective bootcamp that partners with startups so their graduates have access to interesting tech opportunities. Their staff stressed the importance of the interview.

“We’d rather have conversations with the applicants themselves to get a sense of who they really are, and how Startup Institute might help them to accomplish their goals,” a Startup Institute staffer said.

In-person interviews are also the best opportunity to show your personality, which is something bootcamps such as Startup Institute will want to see.

“Startup Institute is not a bootcamp focused exclusively on skills: We screen for cultural fit as well as technical skills,” a Startup staffer said. “A candidate may be incredibly talented on the technical side, but if that candidate were to be hired by one of our partners only to exhibit a resistance to change, single-mindedness, a poor attitude, or egomania, it hurts our reputation and the employability of all of our alumni and students, in turn.”

Interviews are an opportunity to show how you think as well, something employers value. You can do this whether they ask you questions about yourself or past projects.

“By listening to the candidate describe how they built it and the challenges involved, we get a better sense of their thought process and how they might tackle future projects” said Michael Nutt, co-founder and chief technical officer of email marketer Movable Ink, which has hired bootcamp grads from Fullstack Academy.

All of the bootcamp staff SkilledUp spoke to agreed that demonstrating an impressive thought process was actually more important than getting 100 percent on a coding challenge.

Finally, don’t forget to bring your paper résumé to the interview.

Treat it Like a College Application

Coding bootcamps may be designed, in part, to give you the skills you won’t get from traditional colleges, but the application process is quite similar. Recruiters want to see that you worked as hard as you possibly could on the application. This means a passionate essay with no typos, ample preparation for interviews and tests, and a polished online presence.

Don’t worry. You won’t have to take a bootcamp SAT or send in your grades again. Just work hard, follow these steps, and ensure you’re applying to the program that suits you best.

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Tips to help you stayed focused, while working from home Tue, 07 Apr 2015 14:28:03 +0000 Today, more people are working from home than ever – yo...

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Today, more people are working from home than ever – you might be a remote employee or maybe you’re a freelancer. Either way it’s always important to keep focused and keep your attention on your work, as opposed to doing other, non-work-related to-do’s around the house. Here are some tips to help you stayed focused.

Home office– The first item on the list is to make sure you have an office or a designated place to do your work. Yes, the bed or couch might feel comfortable, however you will likely be less productive. If you don’t have an extra room to make your “official” office, often time’s people will use a kitchen table or set-up a space in another room in the house. When you have a specific designated space, you will get more done.

To-do list- Your list will serve as a reminder to help you stay on-track throughout the day. Keep a calendar and block off time to stay focused on specific tasks.

Schedule– Create your work schedule. If you will be available from 8-5, then let your friends and family know that just because you work from home, you’re not free to talk whenever they feel the need. They need to know that you have a schedule and, if they would like to chat, they can speak to you over your lunch. I encourage people to actually take their lunch break and have away time to call their friends or family. It can get lonely working from home and you can use your lunch time to talk to friends and have a laugh.

Keep the food at bay– It’s very easy for people to eat throughout the day. Heck, you’re in your home with unlimited access to food and it can be very tempting to snack all day. This can lead to “packing on the pounds.” Have some healthy alternatives around the house and take a stroll around the neighborhood over your breaks. This will not only keep you feeling healthy, but it’s refreshing for the mind. When you feel great, you will feel more productive!

This is just a few of what I find to be the most important tips to keep focused. Check out my blog on tips to stay organized when working from home


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Linkedin Tips Tue, 24 Mar 2015 14:03:04 +0000 Most of us are already aware that our Linkedin profile ...

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Most of us are already aware that our Linkedin profile is just as important as our resume during the job search. Making sure to follow these ever important tips will help guide you to a better Linkedin profile and have recruiters falling at your Linkedin doorstep.

Target keywords– I feel this is the most important aspect to having a stellar Linkedin profile. If you don’t have the correct keywords listed you will miss out on a huge piece of the puzzle. If you’re looking to be found and matched with the perfect role, you have to use the right words. I would suggest looking at positions that you’re targeting and look at the keywords they use in the job posting. For example, if this was the ad, “Looking for a highly-motivated Regional Sales Manager with experience in insurance and leading teams.”, you would want to make sure that you’re using the keywords: “sales”, “insurance”, “leading” and “highly-motivated” – this will ensure you are listed when the recruiter is doing a Linkedin search.

Keep it updated- Even if you haven’t switched jobs recently, you will want to think through any new skills you have acquired throughout the year. Try to include knowledge gained from conferences or seminars you attended, or other instances where you may have obtained knowledge or skills. At the same time you might be adding new skills, it might be a good idea to remove any outdated technology – times change and so does technology, so remove any irrelevant information from your profile.

Professional photo– Make sure that your photo is professional and it’s a photo of only you (not the pic your friend snapped of you and your 3 cousins last summer). Recruiters, myself included, do not love when there’s a group photo or a couples photo. Linkedin is a professional networking place and I would assume your professional work photo is a picture of you and not you and your friends. The moral of the story is “keep it professional.”

Summary- Your summary is the time to tell your story – what you can do and what you have been able to achieve throughout your experience. Again, keep in mind that you should have those all-important keywords within your summary. If it’s not searchable information, don’t waste the space on your summary.

If you take the time to make sure that your profile is up-to-date and that keywords are plenty – the return will be well worth it, especially when the interviews coming rolling in.

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Tips to stay organized when working from home Tue, 10 Mar 2015 15:06:10 +0000 As someone who works from home, people ask me, “How do ...

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As someone who works from home, people ask me, “How do you do it?” They feel that they would be too easily distracted or tempted to shirk their professional duties. The answer isn’t a simple, “No, it’s easy.” It does take major discipline and, if you’re like me, you may find it hard to take a step away from the computer after a long day, creating a different set of quandaries. Here are some tips to keep your day organized and stay on task.

 Get ready: Wake up and get ready just as you would if you were going into the office. This just makes for a better day. You’re still working and still a professional. While sweats and a t-shirt might be ok once in a while, the old saying of “dress for success” still applies. Everyone feels better after they start the day fresh!

 Have systems in place: Label all folders and projects, so you’re able to identify quickly. You wouldn’t just let your files pile up on your desk if you were in the office, so there’s no reason that they should form a pile on your kitchen counter. Whether it be file cabinets or simple racks, find an organized system that works for you.

 Keep your desk clear of clutter: Keep your desk for work-related items and not a place to store other items. It may be tempting to double-purpose the space, but clearly defined boundaries are a good thing when working from home.

 Keep a trash can near: A trash can or recycling bin close by will help to keep your desk free from garbage. Sounds remedial, I know, but before I started working from home, I never placed a receptacle near my desk.

 Maintain a regular schedule: Have clear-cut guidelines and stick to your schedule; this breaks up free time from work time.

 Schedule breaks: It’s important to set break times on your calendar. Everyone needs time to recharge and just get away from the computer.

Lunch time: Try to leave the house during the day over your lunch break. You can always use the fresh air and exercise and being bound to the house all day can wear on a person. It’s tempting to just eat your lunch and continue to work, but it’s important to take time out. Maybe a quick walk around the block, or lunch on your balcony?

 Feeling sick: I’m guilty of this as well, but everyone should take a proper sick day. Sure, enough over-the-counter elixir will allow you to get through the day…but sometimes you really do need to take a day off, even if your days are spent at home.

 Distractions at bay: Avoid whatever might be a distraction – turn off your personal cell phone or personal emails might be helpful. If you wouldn’t do it in the office, you probably shouldn’t be doing it at your home office.

Set ground rules: This goes for both family and pets. It seems like my dogs always start barking or the kids get home from school and need something when I’m on a call, so set ground rules to keep your work time professional. Everyone in your household should be aware of your schedule and cues/clues as to when it’s appropriate to come into your workspace. Whether it be a door hanger or sign, a light on or off, or simply a shut door- everyone should be on the same page.

Some people will find that they aren’t cut out for this type of work arrangement, however for those who work-from-home arrangements do work or for those who are considering testing the waters, these simple tips will make your work-from-home experience more seamless and productive.








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Research the Company Before the Interview Tue, 24 Feb 2015 15:29:51 +0000 You just found your dream job and submitted your resume...

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You just found your dream job and submitted your resume, but what should you do next? If you haven’t already researched the company prior to hitting the submit button, you should start digging! Here are a few tips to make sure your research is thorough and complete, to help you stand out in the interview.

Company website– The easiest place to start searching is on the company’s website. You can learn a lot from their site, including key information about their culture. Here, you can research the leadership team and find out how long each member has been with the company. Don’t forget to check out press releases and other exciting, or not so exciting, business news. As a recruiter, one of the first questions I ask is regarding the research you have done. If you haven’t done your research or tell me you didn’t find any information, I will move on to the next candidate who has done the research. Researching shows a genuine interest in becoming part of an organization, not just finding a job.

Industry– Research the industry and their competitors. Not only will this give you an understanding of what’s trending in the industry and where it’s going, but it can also give you a few talking points of their company’s differentiators. You can also speak to why you’re excited to be a part of their growth.

Ask around– Chances are that you know someone who works there, or maybe you have a friend that knows someone working there. Ask around and find out the good and bad. You can always check LinkedIn see if you’re connected to an employee and ask them questions about the culture, growth, and what it’s like to work there or you can take a peek on GlassDoor and read company reviews from previous employees.

Smaller companies– A lot of small companies don’t have a strong web presence, or if they do, their website may be very lean or bare-boned. That said, when information if lacking, what should you do to prepare for the interview? You can tell the interviewer that you are very excited to learn more about the company. Mention some of the research you attempted. They will understand that there’s a lack of information out there and will likely be glad to talk you through the selling points.

The bottom line is, you should know important facts about the company and why you’re so intrigued. In addition to demonstrating your proactivity and enthusiasm for the organization, you’ll also be setting yourself up for that classic question most recruiters ask, “Why do you want to work here?” Having a solid answer will make you stand out from the rest.



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