Getting That Job!
Weather you are looking for employment in a particular field for which you have been trained, or just trying to land a summer job, the application process is critical to putting your best foot forward and getting that job!
Your application materials usually create a potential employer's first impression of you and your qualifications/suitability for the job they are offering. You want to be sure to make the very best impression possible. Keep in mind that many times there are several applicants for one position, and employers will often use application materials as a way to simply narrow the pool of candidates. In other words, if the application materials aren't engaging and error-free, they go into the recycle bin.
There are about a billion websites, videos, and blogs that will tell you how to write a resume. The video below really breaks it down into it's simplest parts, which is a great place to start. After viewing the video, check out the templates to the left. These are all available to add to your Google Drive. Just make a copy for yourself, add it to your drive, and take it from there.
While you are here, check out the four resume templates to the right. You can view them, and then access and make a copy of the template you like best. Don't like any of those templates? Check out this tutorial on making a resume using Google Docs.
There's a special way to use language in a résumé, the goal of which is usually to give as much information as possible with as few words as possible. In other words, you want to be brief and to the point. Here's an example of a résumé for you to review. Can you pattern your own word choices after this example?
More Résumé Resources
Want more tips and information? Check out the University of Virginia's Creating Your Resume resource for expert advice including lots of sample resumes.
Resumes use special language, and it can be hard to think of the correct verbs to express exactly what you did or accomplished. Check out this list for help with that.
Use this Resume Rubric to have someone else (preferably more than one person) review your resume for accuracy and effectiveness.
The Cover Letter
Unless the job advertisement says NOT to include a cover letter, you should include one. It is your chance to really sell yourself as THE candidate for that job. In fact, it's estimated that a well written cover letter can increase your chances of an interview by 50%. View the video to see how to write a cover letter in three easy paragraphs. There's even an example at the end, but don't be put off by the fact that it is written for a certified public accountant. Just think about what's required for the job you applying to, and write to highlight how your experience and skills is a good fit!
More Cover Letter Resources
For step-by-step guidance, including "dos and don'ts," check out the University of Virgina's cover letter page on their Career Center website.
Thank You Letters
As soon as possible after your interview, you should send your potential employer a thank you letter. Why? To remind them of how awesome you are, of course. Use the same template you used for your cover letter so that all your documents have the same style. That will help the potential employer remember you.
According the the University of Virgina's Career Center, a thank you letter should have three main parts:
Thank the interviewer for meeting with you and refresh his or her memory by stating the time and date of your meeting as well as the position discussed and the topics that were covered.
Reaffirm your interest in the organization. You may want to mention any personal characteristics, work experience, or other information that may be pertinent to the position but was not mentioned in the interview. If you feel any of your responses were inadequate during your interview, this is also the opportunity to provide a more well thought out response.
Wrap up what you have said in the preceding paragraphs and offer the employer a phone number where you can be reached for further questions. Another phrase thanking the employer for his or her time and consideration is usually added to close the letter.
Check out the sample thank you letters at University of Virginia's website.
Cover Letter Templates
Cover Letter Template #1 -- Goes with Resume Template #1
Cover Letter Template #2 -- Goes with Resume Template #2
Cover Letter Template #3 -- Goes with Resume Template #3
Cover Letter Template #4 -- Goes with Resume Template #4