University of Southern California (Emily)



Aug '08 - Jul '09

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    4.18 :: Tips for Job Hunting (from a pro)

    Emily Kemper
    Apr 22, '09 8:43 PM EST

    We had recruiter and professional HR consultant Kristi Enigl come in and talk to us this afternoon about ways to stand out in the job market. She had a lot of great tips, and she helped to diffuse some of (not all) my job-hunting anxiety. I thought I'd share some of her suggestions here for the rest of you who are in similar situations!

    -Firstly, here is her list of Top Ten Resume Rules:

    With regards to #1... This is especially important if, like me, you have more than one page's worth of experience. One suggestion is to treat your resume like an Executive Summary to keep it concise, and leave the full version up online or on request.

    With regards to #2... She basically said that "Objective" line that many of us still have on our resumes is soooooo 2004.

    Some other important things to remember:
    -She said that firms have been hiring for the past few years on what she called a "behavioral basis": this is to say that the work you've done before is likely to predict your strengths. Especially in this market, then, if you are applying to a firm that does work similar to what you're used to, you will have an advantage, and you should play that up!

    -Cover letters: many people never read them! (And I've been putting so much time into mine!) Anyway, keep it short and concise and include indications that you will follow up with these people at a particular time in the future.

    -Portfolios: Keep them short (no more than 10 images), professional, and clean.

    -Be open to contract, part-time, or freelance work.

    -NETWORKING is a huge part of job-hunting. Apparently only 2-4% of jobs are secured through the online submission process. This means that 96-98% of jobs are found through good old-fashioned leg work and meeting people!


    Whew! That's a lot to chew on. Good luck to everyone looking for work, and when you feel up to it, come share your stories on the thread that I started.


    • citizen

      Thanks for posting, Emily. This aligns with a lot of what I've been reading about resume' composition.

      The exception is rule #1. The single-page rule is good but not hard and fast, particularly for people with a longer work history as well as teaching, publications, exhibitions, service work, et cetera. Cramming or editing out important experience to keep your history to 8.5 x 11 x 1 is not necessary in all cases.

      Apr 23, 09 2:51 pm  · 


      I just started reading your thread on the job search... lots of back and forth on this surprisingly controversial topic. Thanks for launching it.

      Apr 23, 09 4:38 pm  · 

      I really like "that "Objective" line that many of us still have on our resumes is soooooo 2004." Ha! I guess my career center staff is totally behind to hit the ms office now :)

      Jun 15, 09 1:36 pm  · 

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