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Keeping Your Career Files Organized

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If you are like most people who have been job searching during the past year, you have sent out hundreds of resumes. It takes a lot of time to do this, but it may only take one interview to give you the opportunity you need. Organization is key to cutting down on the time it takes to apply for jobs.

Create two folders on your desktop. One is for resumes. Name it “Resumes2013.” The other folder is for job descriptions. Name it “JobDescr2013.”

Use a uniform way to name each resume you create. You should be tailoring your resume to match the skills/qualifications in each of the jobs your applying for. Even if you only tweak a few words on an existing resume, you should still rename it.

Create names each resume keeping in mind your word processing program’s file naming protocol. Use something like SmithIBM0513, where Smith is your last name, the company to which you are applying is “IBM”, and follow that with the date. Make sure you change the company name on each resume you send in, even if you decide not to edit the resume. A hiring manager at IBM, for example, will not appreciate receiving a resume labeled Xerox and may see this as a lack of attention to detail. You may think it is not a big deal, but it is a major mistake, just like if you have a job and send one client’s paperwork with their name on it to a different client by accident.

Save a copy of each job description to which you apply. Do not rely on the description to still be online when you get an interview call 3 months after you’ve applied. Name the job description file something like IBMauditor0513, with IBM as the company, auditor as the position and 0513 the date on which you applied.

If you are diligent about organizing your job application files, you should even be able to pull up a job description when a recruiter calls you out of the blue, in response to your resume submission. Having the job posting information at your fingertips will show recruiters and hiring managers that you are organized and ready to take on a new job.

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