It's time to enter the job market, but this time you're ready to whip out a flashy new resume. You know what you want-the dream job. Now you need to figure out how to get there with a strong resume. As you do, beware of the myths. Here are some of the most devastating resume myths on the planet. Debunking these resume killers is a first step in crafting that winning resume.
Finally, be careful about overusing keywords or engaging in "keyword stuffing." Your attorney resume should be readable. While a computer will not notice that you crammed you resume with keywords, an employer reading your resume will. You need to use keywords sparingly so that it still looks and reads like a resume. You also need to use keywords that accurately reflect your professional experience and skills. Padding your resume with terms that have nothing to do with your actual skills and experience could cost you the opportunity to interview.
Job description example: Seeking attorney with 1-3 years experience in commercial litigation (breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, consumer fraud and business torts). Candidates must have excellent writing skills, good oral advocacy skills, strong work ethic, be licensed in Texas, and have a good academic background. The keywords you should select to appear on your attorney resume based on this job description are: commercial litigation, breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, consumer fraud, business torts, excellent writing skills, good oral advocacy skills, strong work ethic, and licensed in Texas.
Formatting your legal resume properly is almost as important as the information it contains. If you present an employer with a dense, hard to read document requiring a magnifying glass, you may find that your legal resume will not be getting the attention it deserves, even if its content is outstanding. Instead, use a font the employer can read easily, such as a 12-point font with variable spacing such as Times New Roman or Arial. While you may have to compromise on font size and style to keep your resume to two pages or less, try not to go below a 10-point font on the major sections of your resume.
I recall an HR Director who wanted me to coach him on his interviewing skills. He told me the "secret" to his "great" resume. He just keyword searched resumes in his company's database, pulled out ones he liked that closely matched his skills, and pasted together the document. When I questioned his ethics, he just shrugged his shoulders and said, "it's common practice."
Your resume is not just a list of your experiences; it is a document advertising you and your accomplishments. Companies spend thousands of dollars on advertising campaigns. They do market research, conduct focus groups, and pitch several different ideas - all to get your attention. Your resume is your only way to get the attention of a hiring manager. There are the obvious changes that can be made to your resume. If you have a simple typo or grammatical error, your resume could be tossed aside no matter how relevant your experience. But, this is something you can edit on your own. A good resume writing service offers more than just proofreading.
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