One of my clients needs to hire a part-time office assistant. I know my client and the office dynamic, so I’m managing the process for them. We want someone who is smart, dependable, familiar with MS apps and understands customer service. I put an ad on CraigsList and within 15 minutes was barraged with nearly 20 resumes; by the end of the day, I had more than 200 resumes to wade through and they’re still dribbling in.
Definitely time for a glass of wine and triage. Some trends and observations:
- Sadly, the economy has not bounced back as much as we might have hoped. People with Masters degrees were applying for a low-level, parttime job. I love smart people, but overqualified candidates leave as soon as they find a better job. Not interested.
- Did you even read the job description? One applicant’s latest experience was at Honey Bunny Daycare where she spent the bulk of her days changing diapers.
- 25-year olds haven’t lived or worked long enough to have 3-page resumes. Remember that it’s a lot harder to write a little than a lot.
- Kids today are terrible writers. Sentences need a subject and a verb. Rules dictate punctuation—not your moods or whims.
- Kids today list the most insignificant of skills, stopping just short of documenting the changing of toilet paper rolls.
- A greeting to a stranger you’re trying to impress shouldn’t begin with “Hey, there!”
- Loved this one: “Hi—I know I’m overqualified, but call me if you can’t find anyone else.”
- Attaching your cover letter and resume as separate files so I have to download twice tells me you don’t have any common sense.
- If you write three paragraphs explaining that a resume is attached, you need to learn to edit. Busy professionals want their messaging in the simplest language possible—a single sentence works just fine.
- If you’re trying to look professional, you should reconsider an email address that reads Iamgod@me.com.
Happily, there are a few resumes that fit my requirements—people with good experience who sound eager to work with us–because that may be the most important requirement of all.