4 mistakes and 4 tips to help you improve the quality of your resume in the IT industry (and beyond).
Perhaps you're wondering why recruiters aren't responding to your messages?
Or would you like to improve the quality of your resume to increase your chances in recruitment?
Mistakes can be accidental and their solutions simple. But sometimes we need someone to make us realize that something can be done better.
Let me be that person for you today.
Is it worth listening to me?
Why should you take the time to read this article?
I leave the answer to that question up to you. I'll introduce myself, and you can judge whether it's worth going further.
You can, but you don't have to. I am not an HR professional with several years of experience. Neither am I a senior programmer.
I'm a fairly young Business Development Manager at TDSOFT – an IT company from Łódź, Poland, which creates software and mobile applications for the gaming industry, mainly for the UK market.
I am also a student of Computer Science. I have had my first work experience as a programmer, but at TDSOFT I discovered that B2B sales and recruiting is something that allows me to be truly fulfilled.
However, to find my first job in IT, I sent my application to tons of places, spent hundreds of hours gaining technical knowledge, and went to many interviews.
I learned from my mistakes. I read about how to get a recruiter's attention, what it means to make a "good first impression" at an interview.
I confronted the knowledge I gained with reality, looking at what doesn't work for me and why.
In the end, I was able to find a job in a great place where I can understand even better what my mistakes were.
Working at TDSOFT, I am responsible, among other things, for HR. I am involved in recruiting, evaluating resumes, interviewing candidates, trying to find the best people for the jobs.
I remember my own struggles and wondering why someone wasn’t respond to my emails, so today I'm going to show you the 4 worst mistakes I encounter as a recruiter and their simple solutions.
Are you intrigued?
If so, then let's go!
1. Resume file name
Excuse me? Is it possible to make a mistake here?
That's right – when recruiting programmers I sometimes see various titles of resume documents. Sometimes they were quite funny (I once received a resume from a candidate with the title "Finally did it" :)), sometimes it could be a sign of ignorance or distraction (spelling mistakes or typos).
The daily life of an IT recruiter is not that colorful, but I have noticed a small mistake that a large number of candidates make.
Are you 100% convinced that labeling your resume "resume.pdf" will make the process easier for the recruiter? Will you help that person remember your name and the position you are applying for?
Often there are many other candidates applying for the same position you are applying for.
A recruiter is also a human being – if they receive over 100 e-mails with an attachment entitled "resume.pdf", and is involved in several recruitment processes at the same time... Dear friends, let's not let HR go crazy!
Let's make it easy for them and name the document like this, for example:
Resume – Jan Kowalski, Job Title
Or perhaps even:
Resume – John Smith, Job Title (Company Name)
In this way, we immediately let the recruiter remember us – they see our personal information, the position for which we are applying, and in addition, by including the name of the company in the title of the document it looks as if the resume was created specifically for this recruitment process ;).
(changing the name of the file only takes a moment and creates a very good impression – if you like, after sending the email you can change the title of the document back to as it was before :)).
2. Not including a link to the repository
This point applies rather to young IT professionals, or those aspiring to this role.
There is growing competition in the IT market, especially among young IT professionals applying for internships or junior programmer positions.
More and more bootcamps and programming schools are appearing, tempting with the possibility of changing careers, mainly in the programming area.
A lot of universities (both public and private) have in their educational offer computer science majors.
Living in a world where it is easier to find a place with access to the Internet than without it, every year there are more and more people who decide to self-study in the area of IT that interests them.
All these people, motivated by different factors, later stand at the same starting line, and begin the race for their first IT job.
The COVID-19 pandemic and the facilitation of remote work in many companies has resulted in even greater competition – people from different parts of the country and even the world apply for positions, which are the first step in developing a career in the IT world.
When applying for a position, you have to take into account not only local, but even global competition.
Allow me to present you a small simulation:
Imagine a recruiter – a person who often has no technical background.
Their goal is to hire an individual for a programming internship or junior position.
They post an ad and wait for candidate applications.
And they get responses – dozens, sometimes hundreds of resumes.
hey begin to review them...
... And they see lots of resumes that look very similar.
How is a recruiter supposed to choose the right person from such a large number of applications?
How are they supposed to organize an effective "sieve", already at the first stage of recruitment, which will allow to select the most valuable individuals?
Do you feel confident about your technical skills? You don’t want to disappear in the sea of applications of other candidates?
BE SURE TO INCLUDE A LINK TO YOUR PROJECTS.
All you need is a link to GitHub, and the recruiter will have a chance to verify your skills themselves. Or they will show your repository to someone who can evaluate it.
By doing so, you increase your chances of making it to the next stage of the recruitment process. You are getting closer to achieving your professional goal! :)
You certainly put in a lot of heart and spent a lot of time studying. Show it off, don't hide it!
3. GDPR Clause.
A simple mistake can ruin your chances. Remember ALWAYS to include the following clause in your application:
I consent to the processing of my personal data for the purposes necessary for the recruitment process in accordance with Regulation (EU) 2016/679 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 27 April 2016 on the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data and on the free movement of such data and repealing Directive 95/46/EC (RODO).
Alternatively, you can include a shorter clause that looks like this:
I consent to the processing of my personal data by (company name) for the purpose of recruitment for the position I have applied for.
Please ALWAYS remember to fill in the above clause with the NAME of the COMPANY (e.g. TDSOFT) you are applying to.
A very common mistake (made carelessly) is to leave it with the phrase (COMPANY NAME) ;).
4. The same resume sent to everyone
When recruiting, it can feel like some candidates send the same resume to everyone.
To all companies, to all positions, but even to all... industries.
Often the resumes are very general – work experience from very different areas is listed, there is also a lack of a more in-depth explanation of why you are interested in IT.
If we add to this the lack of a portfolio or any information about completed courses, then the recruiter has no chance to find out whether the candidate is suitable for the position.
And then such an application is often rejected.
If our previous work experience or fields of study are not strictly technical, it is even more important to highlight our (from the point of view of the recruitment process for a given position) advantages.
Show what courses you have completed
Select the technologies in which you operate
Highlight which projects you have worked on
Let's try to select for the recruiter those experiences and skills that may be most valuable to them in the recruitment process for a particular position.
Let's present ourselves as a person determined and willing to develop in the IT industry, and not moving between several different industries and professions ;).
We went through 4 problems and 4 solutions that can bring you closer to your dream position. These are not all the aspects to keep in mind, but they are definitely worth remembering :).
The topic of recruitment is, of course, more complex. You can also think about:
Writing a proper email to send to your (hopefully!) future employer
How to present yourself the best way you can in a job interview
How to prepare for a technical interview
I will try to address these and other issues in the next articles, if you enjoyed this one :).
And what are your experiences? What else would you add to this list? What do you consider as the biggest obstacle in getting your dream IT job?
Please comment, I'm very curious about your point of view!
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