I have reviewed thousands of resumes during my career as a legal recruiter, and I know within 30 seconds whether the candidate is worth pursuing. And, I’m not alone. Employers routinely decide if a candidate is viable in the first few second of reviewing the applicant’s resume.
How to Get an Interview: Key tips
I recently conducted a resume workshop for the North Florida Association of Corporate Counsel CLE event that Special Counsel sponsored in Jacksonville. Here are four key takeaways from those sessions that will ensure your resume gets the results you want.
1. Include your LinkedIn profile
Your personalized URL for your LinkedIn account should always be included in your resume at the top of the page in the contact information section. If you do not have a terrific LinkedIn profile filled with your experience and achievements and highlighted with a professionally snapped pic, create one today! A LinkedIn URL makes your resume interactive rather than static and engages the reader. This link will show you some tips to creating an effective LinkedIn presence. In order to customize your URL, click here and follow the step by step guide.
2. Include your Twitter handle
Not yet on Twitter? It’s the most widely-used social media platform in the country and can be a great tool for lawyers building an online brand. By posting content that demonstrates your expertise, retweeting relevant legal developments and sharing personal touches that distinguishes you from others, you will give prospective employers a great deal of information about you that can’t be captured on a resume. Give an employer an idea of who you are as a person rather than just sending them a piece of paper. To get started, click here.
3. Embrace bullet points
Paragraph formatting is confusing and not pleasing to the eye. Instead, use bullet points to describe your experience. See the difference below:
Provided guidance to clients in finding the best solution to meet their goal, tailoring our strategy when necessary. Supervised implementation of a successful litigation program created for new clients to exceed their expectations. Provided day-to-day support to the company’s line of business, including consumer and commercial compliance, debt collection practices, and consumer bankruptcy matters. Interpreted and advised on all laws, rulings, and regulations with respect to bankruptcy, debt collection matters, and litigation and compliance issues based on our clients’ needs.
- Provided guidance to clients in finding the best solution to meet their goal, tailoring our strategy when necessary
- Supervised implementation of a successful litigation program created for new clients to exceed their expectations
- Provided day-to-day support to the company’s line of business, including consumer and commercial compliance, debt collection practices, and consumer bankruptcy matters
- Interpreted and advised on all laws, rulings, and regulations with respect to bankruptcy, debt collection matters, and litigation, and compliance issues based on our clients’ need.
4. Be specific
General descriptions don’t do the trick. Describe your experience with as much detail as possible so the words jump off the page. For example:
- Take and defend depositions OR
- Take depositions of medical experts such as doctors and nurses as part of complex medical malpractice cases.
Employers want to see key words with a quick glance at your resume. Make sure your experience lines up with the job description.
Make the most of the 30-second review that your resume will get by incorporating these tips today. And, tweet to @specialcounsel when you get the interview!
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