Everyone has come across a job they thought was PERFECT for them, right??? You get excited going over the qualifications and requirements. You think to yourself, “This job is MINE!!!” Then you take a closer look at the application requirements and notice that the deadline is 5:00 PM today……”OMG!!!! It’s 4:30!!! What am I going to do?” Do you go to your email and forward your resume from an old application? Or do you make the best of the time you have before the deadline to customize your resume and cover letter? It should be an easy answer but more often than not people are in such a hurry that they are not taking the time to tailor their resumes. And then they wonder why they are not getting any callbacks!
Every resume you submit should be tailored to each job you apply for. That being said, customizing your resume and cover letter for each job will leave you with multiple documents. You may feel overwhelmed if you are applying to numerous positions. Keeping track of everything can surely get pretty confusing. But if you have some type of strategy to manage these documents, it will definitely make
s life easier.
We all have
lots of different things to offer to various employers. This is a good thing. You have transferable skills that can be used in different industries and roles. If you are job searching with that in mind, then you know that you have to be organized. Otherwise you find yourself all over the place when it comes to creating a cover letter and resume. There is something you can do to help with that…CREATE FOLDERS!!!!
Every Potential Job Role Needs a Folder
If you are applying to several different roles or industries, create a folder for each goal. If you have customer service and administrative/clerical skills, there should be a separate folder for each. Why? Because each resume and cover letter should be different. This way when you are applying for jobs that requires customer service skills you have a resume that is specific to those skills. Then all you have to do is go into that resume and make minor changes. It sure beats having to create a resume from scratch!
Create a file folder on your computer first. Make sure you save it to your flash-drive as well. If you have a cloud storage account, save it there as well. This way if something happens (computer dies, lost flash-drive) you still have a backup. Placing all items in one secure place makes things easier. If you get a response from a prospective employer, you want to be able to remember a name or the details about the job opening. Otherwise, you could miss a good job opportunity.
Create Sub-folders for Resumes and Cover Letters
Within the master folder for each goal place your sample resume and cover letter. Then create separate sub-folders for each actual job application. Every job application folder should have:
- The job description
- Your cover letter and resume
- Reference letters
- Thank-you notes
- Any correspondence with the prospective employer
- Your own notes on your interview
- Any feedback on the interview you get from the employer
This process allows you easily find information related to a particular job. It saves you from having to search through tons of files looking for information. Taking the time to include the job description in the company’s sub-folder is extremely helpful. The job descriptions will help you prepare for the interviews. It’s also a good idea to have it on hand for any potential references that may request to look at the job description.
What if you get a call from a prospective employer asking you to send a copy of your resume and cover letter to another branch ASAP? Having your files and folders organized allows you to quickly access that information. It also shows that employer that you are on top of things. In this competitive job market, employers/recruiters are finding ways to slim down their applicant pools. This scenario could be a test to see if you have the skills and abilities you say you do.
Create Templates for Your Resumes and Cover Letters
Try basing your resume and cover letter on free templates that can be found online. These templates can be great for giving a professional look and feel to your application. Templates can also help
s you build your collection. Having several versions of your resume is important. Some industries like the legal and medical fields prefer basic black and white without all the frills. On the other hand, creative industries like design, fashion and photography want the color and accents. You have skills that can be useful in many places. Having these different representations of yourself is essential. Resume Now is great source for free sample resumes and cover letters.
Using a folder system to stay organized makes the job search process a lot easier. Every resume and cover letter that you create makes you a much better informed candidate. Your job hunting results will be affected by your ability to successfully organize your job search materials. You never know how long your search for employment may last. Searching for a job is not a sprint so pace yourself by organizing.