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Posted by Mindy Thomas on

Don’t Shut That Door on These 5 Resume Rules: What Job Hunters May Not Know

Seriously? Another article about resume writing? How many do we need to read on this topic? How much more is there to know about writing a resume?

Perhaps these are a few of your thoughts. But, in this chaotic world of navigating a job search and countless posts that make you want to scream, I ‘m pretty certain that you may not have heard of these tricks and tips.

1. Including a Hotmail or Yahoo email address on a resume is still holding people back from landing an interview. Believe it, because it’s true. Yes, there is discrimination relating to the domain name of your email provider that you are using. Six years ago when I was a legal recruiter, I remember my boss saying to me, “Oh, and by the way, if someone has a Yahoo or Hotmail address, they are not up with the times, so don’t bother.” I was horrified. Years later I started to read articles on this same subject. Some of the research is showing that if you’re in the technology sector, your chances of getting passed up are significant. If it’s happening in the legal and technology sectors, I think you’ll agree it’s not worth taking a chance. I’ve included a link to an article about this topic so you can see what I am talking about. Get with it and use a Gmail address (it even looks cooler!) and, above all, make sure you’re able to retrieve your messages through your smartphone.

2. Be sure to include multiple contact options on your resume to make it easy for a recruiter to get in touch with you. Include your Gmail address, your LinkedIn profile address, which should be hyperlinked to your profile, and your cell phone number. Additionally, with the issue over privacy concerns, I typically recommend including only your city, state, and zip code as your address information on your resume. Also, if you happen to see an unknown telephone number coming in on your phone, I would highly recommend letting those calls go to your voicemail. You certainly don’t want to get blindsided by a recruiter’s call when you are out to lunch, shopping, or sitting at your desk.

3. Use your LinkedIn hyperlinked address on your resume. A huge tip to ensuring you are completely doing what’s considered state-of-the-art LinkedIn etiquette is to customize your profile address. Showcasing your name on your resume with a bunch of numbers and dashes next to it really shouts out that you haven’t a clue about the nuts and bolts of LinkedIn.

Here’s an example of what you want to avoid: http//www.linkedin.com/mindythomasasjb1234t.

This is an example of what your link should look like: http://www.linkedin.com/in/mindythomas/

4. If someone writes your resume and cover letter for you, such as a professional resume writer, friend, or family member, be sure to change the authorship on each document. How do you do this? Simple. Go to “File,” then go to “Properties” and insert your name in the appropriate field. “Save” this as your final document. My feeling has always been that you do not need to advertise that you got help. However, with that being said, if your recruiter asks if you wrote your resume, be honest and tell them you absolutely had help. Hey, let me clue you in about HR folks. They are also investing in professional resume writing services along with marketing, sales, and social media specialists to stay ahead of the pack. How do I know this? I routinely get hired by these pros.

5. Give yourself permission to add job titles when your job title is generic or doesn’t make sense. Don’t be afraid to make appropriate changes because when a recruiter reads your resume (or the ATS does, for that matter), having a title that makes sense or one that is almost identical to the job posting will absolutely strengthen your candidacy. Use the title that the employer is using on the posting and put it in parentheses next to your given title at your company. You know that resumes are marketing and sales documents, so you want to be sure to grab this opportunity to boost your SEO and connect your background to the job posting. Often times what your company has designated as your title cannot do the heavy lifting of connecting the dots.

Resume writing in today’s world is full of slippery slopes, so don’t underestimate how even the smallest nuance can raise a red flag or boost your marketability to getting you to the next step in the job search process.