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Quality resume still counts when job hunting, career consultant says

Michele Dagle, Certified Professional Resume Writer
Michele Dagle, Certified Professional Resume Writer
Courtesy Michele Dagle

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- As the employment outlook brightens across the country and recent college graduates prepare for their first job search, a resume continues to be an important asset. I recently interviewed a professional writer who helps individuals find their hidden strengths to land their dream job.

Tell us a bit about yourself & give a bit of history about when you started your business.

My name is Michele Dagle, and I am a Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW). After several years of editorial experience in advertising, magazine publishing, and corporate communications, I began offering resume-writing services in addition to copywriting and editing. Through developing resumes, I help people market themselves to land better jobs. I am a member of the Professional Association of Resume Writers and Career Coaches (PARW/CC) and the National Resume Writers’ Association (NRWA).

What’s the biggest mistake people make when writing their own resumes?

I would say, overlooking your accomplishments and how they relate to your job search. Being objective about your own achievements can be difficult, but unearthing those achievements and clearly presenting them is key in creating an effective resume.

What can job hunters do to help their resume “pop” out from the crowded inbox?

First impressions are important, even for resumes. A clean, modern layout helps the reader to quickly understand your professional experience and qualifications. Good design and simple typography go a long way in creating an outstanding resume.

How important are services like LinkedIn and Facebook when it comes to finding a job?

I believe having some sort of online presence — be it an online portfolio, a blog, a Twitter account — is a must for most job searches. At the very least, consider creating a LinkedIn profile, one that reflects the information found on your resume. The online presence you choose, however, should be appropriate for your career goals and be directed at accomplishing those goals.

What advice can you give to people who have been unemployed for several months?

Expand your job search: If you have primarily been job hunting online, try other avenues, such as attending in-person networking events (through industry organizations, alumni groups, and community groups) and getting back in touch with former colleagues. Also, think about taking a course or enrolling in an academic program that would add to your set of skills and make you more marketable in your job search. An added bonus to taking a class: the opportunity to network with fellow students who may be in your field or industry.

Any career tips you can offer to recent college graduates?

I would suggest the same advice to recent graduates as to those who have been unemployed for months: Broaden your job search. When you first start looking for a job, do not restrict your hunt to the Internet — consider joining industry organizations and attending their networking events, becoming active in your alumni group, and remaining in touch with classmates.

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