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Resume and Interview Preparation Tips for Job Applicants

Helpful Tips for Building Your Resume

Resumes can’t talk so they need to get to the point and interest the hiring manager to help you get an interview. Following these best practices is a great start.

  • No need to include your street address – city/town is fine.
  • Put experience in chronological order with the most recent positions towards the top.
  • Include all awards, clearances, licenses, and certifications, but keep it concise.
  • Bullets for work experience should always start with an action verb and be a complete thought – never start with “I”.
  • Education should be at the bottom of the resume (unless you are a recent graduate with limited professional experience).
  • Include Military experience and explain what you did while serving.
  • If you did an apprenticeship, internship, part-time or seasonal role make sure to highlight that to avoid the potential for a recruiter/hiring manager to misjudge your experience.
  • Try to keep your resume to 1-2 pages tops.
  • Choose fonts and spacing that makes it easy for anyone to read your resume.
  • Try to focus on your achievements and major contributions with your previous/current employers.
  • Tie things back to monetary value – Earned/Saved the company X amount of money.

Preparation Tips and Insights for a Successful Interview

A job interview helps an employer get to know you and your skill sets to make sure you’re a good fit for the position they’re filling. These tips will help you make a great impression so you will be the successful candidate who gets hired.

  • Prepare ahead of time and make sure:
    • Your internet connection is working for a Video interview.
    • Your phone is charged and has a good connection for a Phone interview. TODO periods or commas or none at the end of lines.
    • Your vehicle is in working order with gas for an In-person interview.
  • Research the company you are interviewing for and come prepared with a variety of questions to make the interview go both ways.
  • Bring copies of your resume with you to the interview or have it in-hand for a phone/video interview so you can answer any questions the interviewer may have about it.
  • Focus on your strengths and how you can contribute to the company (only address weaknesses if you are asked to).
  • Focus on being upbeat, confident, and focused in your interview because people can hear your body language over the phone as well.
  • Be authentic, honest, and concise (no long stories about how much you hated your last boss).
  • Overdress for the interview to show them the level of interest you have in the position.
  • Keep a list of common interview questions and continue to build the list as you’re asked new questions – Practice answering all those questions with a friend, roommate, significant other, etc.
  • Be flexible on interview times and respond to emails in a timely manner.

These tips are best practices and over time have proven to help candidates succeed in the interview allowing them to take the next step in their career.

Whether you’ve heard these before or not, KCI wants to help you succeed in your job search and build your career. Good luck!