Graduating in 1.5 months. Job search/resume questions

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Scott_J, Apr 2, 2004.

  1. Scott_J

    Scott_J Cinematographer

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    I'm graduating from college the weekend of May 15-16, and I am now starting to go full swing in my job search. I have some questions I'm hoping some of you can give me some thoughts on.

    If the ad says something along the lines of "mail, fax, or e-mail" your resume and cover letter, are any of those methodes considered better to use than the others? E-mail would be the easiest, best, and preferred method for me, but does that look bad from an employer's point of view compared to the other methods? I just feels it's inferior to the other methods, but it may just be me.

    And in the same vein, if I do e-mail my resume and cover letter, is it appropriate to essentially type a cover letter in the e-mail in which I attached my resume, or is it better to type the cover letter in a Word document and then also attach that to the e-mail?

    Any help, thoughts, opinions on these questions, and any other tips you can provide are much appreciated. Thanks in advance for your help.
     
  2. Dennis Nicholls

    Dennis Nicholls Lead Actor

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    It depends upon the employer. Traditional companies want things on paper. But technology companies often prefer using email. My current employer, a small semiconductor company that makes most processors used in personal computers, demands that you apply via their website, pasting your resume into the on-line application.

    What is your background, and what kind of job are you seeking?
     
  3. Scott_J

    Scott_J Cinematographer

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    Thanks, Dennis. I'm getting an atmospheric science (i.e. meteorology) degree, applying for weather forecasting jobs. I know the National Weather Service now requires applicants to apply online, so I'm thinking that private firms in the industry may prefer e-mail.
     
  4. Grant B

    Grant B Producer

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    I worked on a weather satellite proposal a while ago that used people with your degree, you might want to check out some jobs along that line.

    I had my resume up on monster for about a year and nothing. I redid it and got tons of calls and emails. If your resume is not getting looked at, redo it quick.
     
  5. Keith Mickunas

    Keith Mickunas Cinematographer

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    If your resume is going to be passed around to a bunch of people at a company, I'd recommend e-mail, that way they can store it in their database if they have one and e-mail it around. I imagine that a lot of companies that get paper ones end up scanning them. I'd definitely avoid fax, that just sucks as far as quality goes.

    Also, when it comes to e-mail, pay attention to the format. If none is specified I usually go with an older word format, such as Word 95, so I'm assured they can read it. Don't use the latest. But if they specify plain text or html, definitely convert it. Everytime I update my word doc I export it to text and adjust the formatting so it looks good. Don't bother trying to center anything in plain text, just left justify it.
     
  6. Don Black

    Don Black Screenwriter

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    I would send two via e-mail: 1) Word or PDF; and 2) Plain text appended to the bottom of the e-mail.
     
  7. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    I can't say whether email, fax, or paper is better. Probably email followed up with a posting to the companies online jobs section (since most big companies seem to use that).

    I have four versions of my resume: HTML, Word 97, PDF, and plain text. The plain text is to post into services like Monster.com. HTML for display on my website. Word because it's the best distribution and looks pretty. PDF, well, just in case.

    Don't forget that better than a good resume is contacting someone in the company directly. So far as possible, you want to bypass HR and speak directly with the hiring manager or the pushing the hiring manager to bring in new help. Talk to your professors and advisor, see if they can name names and give you contacts: alumni are great! Frat brothers? Call them. Friends of your family: nepotism is helpful. If you have attended a professional conferences in your field and met someone, give them a call or an email.

    If you call alumni, be sure to have some recent news of their favorite professor, college events, or whatever to tell them. They will appreciate some recent inside news of their alma mater, and will help break the ice and generate friendly conversation. Even if they can't help you, you will have made a contact for the future.

    When I got my B.S. I didn't do any of that, and I should have.

    Now that I've got my Ph.D. that's how I look for a job and it's far more effective and actually quite a lot more fun.


    I also like to have my resume on my website. I'm not sure how useful it is, but someone my stumble upon it and contact me. Check out my Digital Resume to see how I did it.

    Good luck!
     
  8. Seth--L

    Seth--L Screenwriter

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    From knowing people whose job it is to read resumes for businesses and state government, email is by far the best because your resume can quickly and easily be passed from one person to the next. Almost everyone prefers your resume in this form for this reason. There's a greater chance that it could slip through the cracks in paper form -- imagine someone having to go through the hassle of photocopying your resume and sending it 20 different people/departments.
     
  9. Scott_J

    Scott_J Cinematographer

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    Thanks for the help guys. I guess it makes sense that e-mail would be best, since that does make it easiest for them to spread it amongst themselves.
     
  10. Grant B

    Grant B Producer

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    My wife has gone through websites and have sent resumes directly to CEOs CFOs ets with good results. I guess they dont normally look at resumes and tend to be less critical. When they pass it to hiring those people think of it as coming from God and rarely reject the advice of their Big Boss.
     

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