Bob Eubank is the executive director of the Northeast Human Resources Association (NEHRA). He joined NEHRA in 2007 and his background blends human resources with general business management, legal, information systems, operations and strategic planning.
Sean Kenney is a partner at Essex Partners, a career management firm exclusively for senior executives. He helps clients from financial services, life sciences, healthcare, higher education and non-profit organizations position and market themselves for successful advancement.
Radhika Rana, CSP, is a recruiting supervisor at Professional Staffing Group (PSG), one of the largest staffing firms in Massachusetts. In addition to managing PSGs recruiting division, Radhika assists non-profits, such as The Asian American Civic Association, with resume critiquing and mock interviews.
What the professionals had to say ...
6. What made the résumé interesting? Did the person do anything unique to make their résumé stick out?
Eubank: Two things: 1) My eye went immediately to the title VP in the most recent position and this led to an assessment of the level right away. 2) An early job was HR related, and I note training and presentation work later on. This may indicate a progression that would be interesting to explore. How does this manager regard people?
Kenney: The layout is probably the most interesting aspect of the résumé.
Rana: The candidate's professional experiences made the résumé interesting.
Eubank: OK, but I'd like to see some examples of success while a student. Student body president, dean's list, leader of some activity, GPA, etc.
Kenney: The presentation of education in this résumé is fine.
Rana: I think the education on the candidate's résumé is presented well along with the licenses he's received.
Eubank: This is where I have the most difficultly with this résumé. Were I reading this (for real) I would have rejected it after reading the first position for the following reasons:
As mentioned, I would have stopped there. But had I continued, my reaction to the next section would have similar comments (although the tenses are correct) but there are also way too many bullets, too much redundancy and it is too dense. This section is not going to get read. Again, the overall major issue is that the job description should be separated from the major accomplishments achieved on the job.
The third position has some excellent concrete examples of success - closed over $62 million and cross-selling initiative that led to a 32 percent increase — but again is not separated from basic job descriptors.
I would consider cutting the final job. I don't think it really helps the case - only there for continuity.
Kenney: The bullets are a mix of responsibilities (e.g. "Responsible for driving sales performance, productivity and excellence nationally") and accomplishments (e.g. "Closed over $62 million, generating in excess of $750,000 in revenues"). Achievements are more compelling — just because one was responsible for something doesn't mean they did it well. I would suggest having two sentences under each job that outline the scope of responsibilities for the position (manage X, have X direct reports, responsible for X). Then restrict the bullets to well-defined and expressed accomplishments. How much did you grow revenues? Save costs? Create efficiencies? Develop new products, systems, etc? What was the business outcome of your efforts?
Rana: The candidate has presented his work experience in chronological order which recruiters prefer to see as it is much easier to understand the candidate's work history.
Eubank: Aside from the vagueness concern expressed earlier, it is reasonable. It just could be much more precise and hard-hitting.
Kenney: The language was good and responsibilities were descriptive, providing quantified accomplishments in places.
Rana: I think the language used is professional.
Eubank: The flow is fine. The format lends itself nicely to that.
Kenney: There is a clear flow from section to section.
Rana: The résumé has a total of three sections, and it flows smoothly section to section.
We took résumés from six different people looking for jobs and asked professionals to give us their opinion. See what they had to say.