With light-hearted peer participation, Jack Molisani of ProSpring Technical Staffing deftly guided the audience through an engaging program. He emphasized the importance of avoiding common resume and interview mistakes. He addresses a litany of faux pas, including three major, timeless points that are worth revisiting. All levels of technical writers will benefit from improving these key areas of the application process: the resume, networking, and portfolio.
He imparts the importance that the resume is a brutal but simple tool of matchmaking. Molisani reminds us that worn out, overworked HR people barely have time to skim the resume submissions. The restless HR are scanning for keywords directly matching the job description. In turn, Molisani reminds us of the oft-forgotten value of keeping one’s resume exact, clear, error-free, and ultimately concise. Brevity isn’t only the soul of wit but a key to finding employment.
Once you perfect your resume and tailor it to match the needs and duties of the job opening, move on the the next step. You need to take advantage of exactly the other reason why we were present that night: networking!
Submitting resumes through anonymous online job sites is ultimately a dead end. Molisani confides that your online job-search submissions are sucked into the blackhole of internet oblivion. Therefore, tapping into your network is crucial.
For instance, a fellow STC member in your established network may work in the same company you’re eyeing to apply. Keep in mind that inviting her or him for a cup of coffee is worthwhile. Take the time to ask germane questions related to the opening. Your queries can focus on the nature of the company needs for technical writers or details related to the hiring manager. Only then should you ask your network peer to act as a reference for your application submission.
If you advance to the interview stage, you need to be prepared to win the job. You need to understand that your portfolio is a map to tell the story of your work. You can use an artist briefcase to house your portfolio and tell your story.
The order of the documents frames and controls the narrative that you present during the interview session. As this “path of understanding,” in Molisani’s words, conveys to the interviewer your expertise, evidence, ability to transfer the skill-set, and solve their in-house problem.
To further elaborate, the opening section of the portfolio establishes your area of expertise in a select field of technical communication. Meanwhile, the second section illustrates samples that evince it. You can use the third section to convince the potential client that you same can execute to this professional level for them. As a finale, they actualize a solution to their problem can only be serviced by you.
If you missed Jack Molisani’s presentation on tailoring your resume and portfolio, view the slides on the STC Meeting Archive page. You can also find additional insightful help in his book, Be the Captain of your Career. Check out STC San Diego meetings and professional development each month. So please keep an eye out for the next STC event.
Additional Resources to start your Tech Comm Career
So, you’re ready to put these resume and portfolio building tips to use and secure a job in Tech Comm? Here are some good places to start:
Search for your first/next Tech Comm job at our curated Job Boards: https://www.stc-sd.org/index.php/job-resources/job-boards/
Visit us at YouTube for more : https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCknncMtNB_vNzOMh9BVHbrw
For more Tech Comm Job Resources: https://www.stc-sd.org/index.php/job-resources/