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Iowa Workforce Development
Region 12
Siouxland

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Region 12
IowaWORKS Center

 

Using Technology For A
Successful Work Search

Make Your Computer Work for You
Use Internet Resources
Schedule Your Time
E-Mail Tips
Ways to Apply For Job On-line
Formats of Electronic Resumes
Responding to Internet Job Listings
One Resume, Four Versions

Make Your Computer Work for You

  • Word process you resume and other employment related correspondence
  • Hone your skills-practice your typing, word processing or presentation development skills
  • Develop a web site and post your resume there

Use Internet Resources

There are a number of helpful sites job seekers can utilize--here are a few

  • www.webster.com  Merriam-Webster On-line. Look up the meaning of a word or access their thesaurus
  • online.onetcenter.org  O*Net online is an occupational information site that is helpful when writing your resume. Gives general information about occupations along with descriptions of common tasks
  • www.rileyguide.com  The Riley guide is an on-line resource for career related information
  • http://us.jobs/ - US. jobs by the National Labor Exchange
  • www.iowaworkforce.org  links to statewide and local Labor Market Information, jobs in Iowa, and jobs with the State of Iowa

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Schedule Your Time

  • Use a calendar to track more than just your interviews
  • Many of the e-mail accounts you establish have calendar features. Make the most of your calendar to plan your week.
  • If you are unemployed, make getting employment your full time job.
  • Schedule your time and then follow the schedule. For example, you can plan to fill out applications at employer sites in the morning (keep in mind, you will probably not be able to hit more than 3 in a 4 hour period of time).
  • Schedule follow-ups including calls and letters.
  • Schedule internet work search time. Track any "send-outs" you do. Note the company name, address, telephone number and contact person.

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E-Mail Tips

  • Set up a professional sounding e-mail address using one of the free e-mail services
  • Know your e-mail address
  • Check your e-mail on a regular basis-if you are a serious job seeker, this means at least 3 times a week
  • E-mail your resume to yourself and to a friend for review before sending it to employer
  • If your e-mail is corny sounding, you may be taken less seriously as an applicant. Avoid things that sound unprofessional.
  • Avoid using a friend or relative's e-mail address. An e-mail account is easy to set up and there are a variety of sites that offer free accounts. This way you can access the account from various locations and don't have to depend on someone else for access.
  • Again, know your e-mail address and be sure you note the password so you can remember it. Giving out an incorrect e-mail address is like giving out an incorrect telephone number.
  • Check your e-mail frequently. If an employer left a message on your answering machine you would return it in a timely manner. If you e-mail a resume to an employer, or complete an application on-line, it is reasonable to assume the employer may try to contact you through your e-mail address.
  • You don't typically know what kind of software programs a perspective employer has. You can copy and paste your resume into your e-mail, or attach your resume to your e-mail. If an employer specifies a format, try to send your resume in that format. If there is no specified format, rich text or text formats work well. Before you e-mail the resume, send it to yourself and to a friend. Open it. Does everything still look as you intended?

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Ways to Apply for Jobs On-line

  • E-mail
  • Electronic forms/Resume Builders
  • Via the World Wide Web as a Web page

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Formats of Electronic Resumes

The employer you are applying to determines how you prepare your resume for electronic submission.
For electronic resumes there are three popular file formats, all coded in ASCII (American Standard Code for Information Interchange): plain text, rich text, and hypertext.

  • Plain text: Advantages: it is the most popular ASCII format, Microsoft Notepad is a common text editor program, pc's, Macintoshes, UNIX Workstations and mainframe terminals recognize these text files. Disadvantages: a plain text resume is just that-plain--there is no formatting
  • Rich text: Advantages: Rich text provides formatting options that plain text doesn't, it is compatible across word processors. Disadvantages: Destination computers may not recognize a rich text file, rich text is not supported by some e-mail editors and sending a rich text file in the body of an e-mail will result in unreadable text.
  • Hypertext: Advantages: You can publish your resume directly to the world wide web and take advantage of HTML tags used by search engines to index pages of information. Disadvantages: You have to have a web browser, internet access, an HTML converter application or knowledge of manual HTML, Web resume must attract the interest of employers and recruiters on their own

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Responding to Internet Job Listings

  • Read the application instructions and follow them.

  • Use the e-mail address from the ad

  • If a job code is specified in the ad make sure and include it.

  • The employer may ask you to send the resume as an attachment in a particular format- i.e. a Word document.

  • Use the right Subject in the Subject line-include the job title or job code cited in the ad.

  • Include a cover letter in the body of the e-mail message.  The cover letter introduces you and encourages the reader to look at your resume. It should not be a summary of your resume.

  • Make sure your resume is formatted for e-mail. If you copy and paste your resume into the body of the e-mail be sure it will look good in all e-mail systems. Shorter text lines are important so that text doesn't wrap in funny places.

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One Resume, Four Versions

Print Version: the "pretty" version you print and mail or hand to contacts and interviewers.

  • Contains all out formatting: bullets, italics, bold
  • Can be printed on plain or quality resume paper

Scannable Version: no fancy design highlights, may have bulleted lists.

  • Load the resume with keywords and change the focus from action verbs to nouns
  • Use simple formatting-no borders, lines, special characters, bold, etc
  • Print the resume in black ink on plain white paper
  • Use a common and clear font like Arial or Times New Roman in a 12 pt size
  • Don’t fax the resume if you know it is going to be scanned
  • E-mail your resume when possible to avoid problems associated with scanned resumes
     

Plain Text Version: this version is ready to copy and paste into on-line forms or post in on-line resume databases. Advantages: you can spell check what goes into the resume builder, you can easily build resumes into a number of sites by copy and paste instead of having to type information in separately on each one.

  • Open your resume
  • Click on File in your toolbar and select "Save As"
  • Type in a new name for the document
  • Under the title field is the Save As Type pull-down menu-select Text Only (*.txt)
  • Click Save to perform the conversion
  • Open the newly saved file in Notepad
  • Change font to Courier 12 pt
  • Check keywords and adjust action verbs to nouns where possible
  • Delete references to "page two", "Continued" or header information if you have two pages
  • Make sure bullets converted to *'s and there is a space between the bullet and text
  • Use all CAPS sparingly to emphasize what you want to stand out
  • Rearrange and left align text as necessary
  • Save any changes
  • Copy and paste the plain text resume into the online resume builder

E-mail Version: another plain text copy, but formatted for the length of line restriction in e-mail.  You can save the print version of your resume as a Text Only document or open the text only resume you created for resume builders in Notepad.

  • Open your resume
  • Click on File in your toolbar and select "Save As"
  • Type in a new name for the document
  • Under the title field is the "Save As Type" pull-down menu-select Text Only (*.txt)
    Click Save to perform the conversion
  • Open the file you just created using Notepad
  • Check keywords and adjust action verbs to nouns where possible
  • Delete references to "page two", "Continued" or header information if you have two pages
  • Make sure bullets converted to *'s and there is a space between the bullet and text
  • Use all CAPS sparingly to emphasize what you want to stand out
  • Limit line length - change font to Courier 12 pt and margins to 1 inch on the left and 2.5 inch on the right
  • Select Format, Word Wrap
  • Rearrange and left align text as necessary
  • Save changes with a new file name


You are ready to e-mail

  • Select and copy the resume
  • Launch your e-mail program and start a new e-mail
  • Paste your resume into the body of the e-mail
  • Be sure to include a Cover Letter - Keep in mind 60 lines of text online equal one "page" of text on paper
  • Send a test copy of this e-mail to yourself and to a friend who is using a different e-mail program before sending it for the position

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