Ok, you’re getting close to done. You finally have a fleshed out resume and cover letter but you’re still feeling a bit insecure about it…
- Have you presented a compelling *and* accurate picture of your story?
- Do you jump off the page as a stand-out candidate?
- Would a Hiring Manager be excited to read this application?
And not only excited - will they be grabbing their phone to invite you for an interview?
To help answer these last lingering doubts we recommend using Peer Review. Yes, it can be a little awkward asking a friend or family member to read over these things, but the extra eyes are usually worth that little bit of internal squirming!
To help make it as easy as possible, here is a suggested approach. You basically want to make sure your resume and cover letter:
- Convey what you’re intending
- Showcase your full (relevant) skills/strengths
- Avoid too much modesty and/or dwelling on weaknesses
And as for specific questions…
1. Check you’re conveying what you’re intending
- What do you takeaway as my key strengths for the role?
- What do you understand as my rationale for applying?
- Would you be excited to hire me for this role? Why/Why not?
(based on resume and cover letter alone; not what you know from personal experience)
2. Check if you’re missing key traits / points
- Does this sound like me?
(after all, you want to be genuine - false portrayal now may be a short-term help, but won’t land you the job)
- Are there any of my skills/strengths that don’t come across? If so, which?
3. Check you don’t highlight weaknesses
- Do I “toot my own horn” sufficiently?
(you should also ask the reverse, though we find its far more likely for candidates to understate strengths than overstate)
- What weaknesses can you detect? Where/how?
How to take action now!
Take your latest resume and cover letter out with you next time you leave the house. When you’re with a good friend or family member ask for 10 minutes of their time and go over these questions. Once you’ve done it once, it will get easier and easier (and less internally awkward). As with many things, the first time is the hardest, so pushing yourself to start now will mean easier times are ahead :)