My Blog

Why the cover letter matters as much as the résumé

December 11, 2008
Written by Dawn Rasmussen | Leave a Comment Cover Letter

I have the occasional client who pauses when they are told what the investment level is for a cover letter. Why so much, they wonder. Is it really that important? Let me put it this way: What would happen if you had THE perfect résumé, but then sent along an accompanying cover letter that had grammatical, spelling and punctuation errors? What if you didn’t express thoughts in a clear, compelling way? How would an employer respond to this? If you guessed not favorably, you are right! Proofreading errors in a cover letter are the number one job prospect killer for… Read »

Do résumé distribution services really work?

December 8, 2008
Written by Dawn Rasmussen | 1 Comment Job Search, Resume

In this economy, when competition for open positions is the worst in decades, some measure of desperation takes over job seekers. How can a person get their résumé in the hands of of the right employers or job placement agency? In the maelstrom of searching for a job in a turbulent marketplace, many resort to résumé distribution services, posting services, and even direct mail. But to what avail? What does the end user think of the barrage of unsolicited résumés arriving daily, and even hourly in their email box, mail slot and fax machine? I talked to one such recipient,… Read »

Generation Y and Job Seeking

November 27, 2008
Written by Dawn Rasmussen | Leave a Comment Job Search

This week’s blogpost is generously provided by Bret Bernhoft, a Generation Y expert and public speaker addressing generational issues in the work place. For Generation Y, job seeking is certainly nothing like what their parents experienced. Today, the need to be Internet-savvy as well as have effective networking skills is even more imperative than ever. For Generation Y to stay competitive in an ever-tightening competitive job market, they must become more innovative and creative when hunting for available positions. Generation Y has to play a much more closely-managed game of cat and mouse in order to secure their future employment…. Read »

Video résumés – A passing fad or the future for job searchers?

November 22, 2008
Written by Dawn Rasmussen | 2 Comments Resume

There’s been quite a bit of buzz on business networking sites and blogs lately about video résumés. What are the pros and cons of such a concept? Upon first blush, these types of résumés might sound like an ideal way to constructively and convincingly build a case to get hired, but there are some definite down sides to this medium. Most people are not actors, and posing in front of an unflinching and non-interactive camera isn’t going to bring out the natural flow that happens when you are projecting yourself in an interview. Anything delivered to the hiring manager’s desk… Read »

Perils of Social Networking

November 13, 2008
Written by Dawn Rasmussen | Leave a Comment Networking, Social Media

In our electronically connected society, having an online presence is not only an easy thing to create, but also one that can be highly enjoyable and help us maintain our social connections. However, caution should be taken when ‘putting oneself out there’ on the Internet. In a human resource context, prospective employers preparing to make an employment offer can also review online social media as part of the due diligence process on a potential new employee. Think it doesn’t happen that often? Prepare to be startled: A recent article in Computerworld Magazine indicates that now one out of five employers… Read »

What Hiring Managers Look For In A Resume

November 1, 2008
Written by Dawn Rasmussen | 1 Comment Resume

This post has been generously supplied by Ernest White, an experienced human resources professional who has an extensive background in hiring and interviewing, with more than 15 years of broad experience in private and public sectors. His particular expertise is in employee relations, recruitment, diversity, succession planning and organizational development with a dedication to team growth and development. _________________________________________ When applying for jobs, it is important that you read through the job specs thoroughly before submitting your application. A lot of what employers are actually looking for in their potential new employee is written right in the job description and… Read »

Where to Find the Job

October 29, 2008
Written by Dawn Rasmussen | 2 Comments Job Search, Networking

Over the past five years, I have taught résumé-writing classes to literally thousands of people, and every single time I get into a classroom, I ask the attendees where they are looking for employment. Believe it or not, but out of all of those people, I’ve only met two (yes, really-2) that have ever found employment via a job board like Monster.com. This can be pretty discouraging for a job seeker. So this now begs the question: Where exactly DO you find jobs? Hint: The website ExecuNet reports that 70% of executives find employment through their networks. What does that… Read »

An Employer’s Perspective on Job Search Plans

October 21, 2008
Written by Dawn Rasmussen | Leave a Comment Job Search

This week, Tamara Roberts, People’s Department Director of Martin Hospitality, is our guest blogger. As the person managing human resources for a multi-unit hospitality operation that includes the prestigious Stephanie Inn, rated as an AAA Four-Diamond hotel property on the spectacular Oregon Coast, Tamara provides a unique perspective of applicants: Last week, Dawn blogged about creating a job search plan, and from my view, it is very easy to spot those applicants who have no plan at all. They show up in our reception area and tell our receptionist they are “looking for anything.” My first reaction is this: They… Read »

Creating a Job Search Plan and Strategy

October 15, 2008
Written by Dawn Rasmussen | Leave a Comment Job Search

For some people, the loss of employment becomes completely debilitating as well as demoralizing. Consider the fact that most people spend the greater portion of their time during the day functioning in the workplace, it is easy to start associating our personal self-identity with our work and career. When the paradigm shifts, however, and suddenly that major part of our lives is no longer there, a person experiences grief, sadness, despair, loss of self-esteem, and yes, even sometimes panic. Given the uncertain economic times, there’s even more to fear about what it is going to take to survive, let alone… Read »

Keywords: The Key to Getting Your Résumé Noticed

October 9, 2008
Written by Dawn Rasmussen | 1 Comment Resume

As the job market tightens and there are an ever-increasing number of applicants for each job opening, standing out from the crowd is becoming a matter of survival of the fittest. Or in the case of résumés, survival of the ‘key-wordiest’. Human resource and hiring managers have employed a variety of tools to help ‘weed out’ lesser or non-qualified applicants in the form of software that scans or ‘reads’ your résumé. Those résumés that score below a certain number of keyword hits go directly to the electronic round-file, while those who score high end up being viewed by a live… Read »