The Résumé: How to Separate Yourself from the Crowd Ronald D. Pollock







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The Résumé: How to Separate Yourself from the Crowd

Ronald D. Pollock

What should I take away from this Webinar?

Importance of analyzing job announcements

Understanding of how to relate to the job announcement Understanding of how to describe accomplishments Understanding of the different types of résumés Understanding of the value of the words you use Ideas for expanding the scope of job search

What is the purpose of a résumé?

To answer the employer’s question, “What can you do for me today?”

To provide the employer with a “knowledge representation” of ourselves - as related to the employer’s job needs.

To provide the employer with information about our past performance so our future performance can be predicted.

Ultimately, to get an interview.

Analyze you current skills in the terms used by potential employers HOW?

Ask yourself, “What do I know?” Do I know how to:

Identify and obtain information to meet the information needs of customers? Organize information for easy access?

Use a variety of media to meet the information delivery needs of customers, like the Web, social networking, etc.?

Develop and maintain a budget?

Develop and conduct programs of instruction to develop the information skills of patrons? Relate information services to the needs of the parent organization?

Interact with the public using written and verbal communications?

Job Announcement Review Steps

1. Read entire job announcement first. 2. Read job announcement second time.

a. From position requirements: Identify each requirement. b. From position duties: Identify each duty.

3. List requirements and duties on one side of a sheet of paper. 4. Review organization’s Web page.

5. Identify opportunities and background information from employer’s Web page.

6. List your skills and experience that match the requirements, duties, and opportunities on the sheet of paper.

7. Identify what is needed for the application process. 8. Identify deadlines for submission.


2 Types of Résumés 1. Chronological 2. Functional/Combination 3. Federal Chronological Résumé

Most commonly used résumé format - understood by both employer and individual preparing it.

Most effective if you have experience in the field of interest:

o Can include metrics indicating successes in previous jobs.

o Can include big-name employers or impressive job titles.

o Can include promotions or increased responsibilities.

o Includes reverse chronological listing of work experience.

Flexible: Allows sections such as “Summary of Qualifications” or “Profile” if you have specific experience related to the position.

Demonstrates continuity of work experience. Does not create questions about work history.

Chronological Template Limited Experience Heading Experience Skills/Languages Education

Organizations (If relevant)

Relevant Experience Heading Professional Profile Experience Skills/Languages Education

Organizations (If relevant)

Functional/Combination Résumé

Organized by skills/knowledge related directly to the job announcement. Facilitates inclusion of experience from internships and volunteer positions. Preferred by many high tech firms.

Usually limited to one page, but not always. Advantages:

o Provides a synopsis of skills and abilities.

o Communicates professional growth.

o Diminishes importance of a problem work history.

Caution: Employer may become suspicious about applicant’s work history. Combination Résumé includes listing of previous employers.

Federal Résumé

Usually use online program such as that in USA Will require personal identification information.

Will require detailed information about current/previous employers and educational experiences.

Don’t forget to include special skills (tech, etc.), languages, knowledge, relevant coursework, honors, etc. in the Additional Information section.



Includes section to address required Knowledge, Skills, Abilities (KSAs). Résumé determines if minimum qualifications are met; KSA statements determine position in selection roster.

Statements should be written so they describe the problem you addressed, the actions you took, and the results of your actions.

When Developing Your Résumé: Think in terms of ACCOMPLISHMENTS

Describe the WHAT. Describe the HOW. Describe the VALUE.

CAUTION: Must be able to verify!

What Is an Accomplishment?

You accomplished or achieved MORE with the same resources.

What you accomplished achieved the same results with FEWER resources. You IMPROVED operations or simply MADE THINGS EASIER OR MORE VIABLE for the overall operation.

You resolved panic problems with LITTLE OR NO INCREASE in time, energy, dollar cost, personnel, or other resources.

You accomplished something for the FIRST TIME.

What did you do?

Saw problems, opportunities or challenges and took the initiative? Developed something?

Created/designed new department, program, procedure, plan, service, or product?

Identified need for a plan, program, product, service, procedure, etc.? Prepared original reports, papers, documents, or grants?

Made/participated in any direct or indirect technical contributions? Participated in major management decisions or organizational changes? Implemented /participated in any sales and/or profit and/or cost saving recommendations?

Keys to developing statements

How did you develop, design, create, and/or implement your plan, program, product, service, procedure, etc.?

How did your employer benefit from your efforts? Can you quantify your results?

Ideas that may help:

o Did your results save dollars, generate new business, increase sales/profits?

o Did your results improve efficiency (time, manpower, procedures)?

o Did your results make an impact on the organization?



Caution: Avoid excessively general statements

Laying claim to improvements without explanation.

Citing reductions in costs or increases in efficiency without quantified measurements.

Taking credit for progress without providing some element of detail.

Using terms such as excellent, world-class, superior, etc. without independent evaluation that provided the rating.

How to Write Your Accomplishments

From a résumé:

• Answer questions, shelve books, check out books, answer phone. Replaced with:

• Provided print and online reference services to students, faculty, and staff in the research library of a university with 52,000 students and 19,000 faculty and staff.

• Taught faculty, staff, and students the use of online reference resources such as Lexis-Nexis, Dialog, and Factiva.

• Maintained the stacks of a major research library using Library of Congress and Dewey Decimal classification systems.

Elements of Effective Statements

What ACTION did you take?

What CHALLENGE/PROBLEM did you address? What were the RESULTS of your actions?

Action Statements that Reflect Results-1

Original Entry:

Duties included Website re-design. Revised Entry:

• Created an effective association Website, as a member of a 3-person team, that resulted in a 25% increase in hits within 2 weeks through usability testing and re-design.

Action Statements that Reflect Results-2

Original Entry:

• Responsible for cataloging. Revised Entry:

• Managed the trouble-free migration of a card catalog system into an online catalog system through a comprehensive cataloging vendor selection process.

Action Statements that Reflect Results-3

Original Entry:

• Responsible for children’s programs. Revised Entry:

• Increased participation in a children’s summer reading program by 20% through the redesign of the program and the development of Web-based marketing.


5 Some additional details:

Limit résumé to two pages; one if you have little or no experience.

While some HR managers may not care, use a good quality white or cream colored bond paper for your résumé.

Use a 10 to 12 point font; 10 point Times New Roman is too small. Do not fold or staple the résumé.

Use a large envelope so the résumé can be mailed “flat.”

Use language and keywords that are used in the job announcement. Minimize bold lettering, italics, underlining.

Focus on providing education/experience that shows what you can do to meet the employer’s needs.

Choose Words carefully!

“Responsible for”

o Relates to job description, not what you actually did. “Assisted”

o Can mean you just “helped” by making copies, answering phone, etc.

o Does not indicate you actually developed skills in accomplishing a task with others.

o May still be useful if you supported a project directly related to skills required by the job announcement.

What if you’ve been out of the profession for a while?

Find out what skills are necessary for the kinds of jobs that interest you. Look for ways to acquire/refresh skills

o Volunteer at libraries, etc.

o Take CE courses or community college courses to acquire new tech skills

o Use local/area libraries to learn new databases, etc. Review the things you already do that relate to job requirements

o Committee/organizational activities

o Household management/budgeting

o Personal interest in Web design, social networking, etc. Convert your skills into the language used by the employer.

Current Students

Obtain experience any way you can while in school. Remember, volunteer experience counts.

Take courses that provide the knowledge/skills needed for your chosen field. Select projects that expand your knowledge and skills.

Use technology and develop the skills needed for your chosen field.

If you have a “capstone” project required for graduation, make it a project that showcases your knowledge and experience in your chosen field.


6 Learning Resource Center Manager

Tri-State Institute is searching for a Learning Resource Center (LRC) Manager.

The LRC Manager works daily with faculty and students of the school to support the curriculum, and provide information literacy instruction and reference services to patrons.

Duties include library orientation, database instruction, collection development, reference services, library outreach, and other duties.

The LRC Manager contributes to the development of the program’s philosophy, objectives, and services, and assures fulfillment of standards of all accreditation and regulatory agencies.

Interested candidates meeting the requirements above may send their cover letter and personal resume to Robert W. Noah, Director of Administration.


Master’s Degree in Library Science from an ALA-accredited program with experience and/or education in health science librarianship

Comfort level with IT hardware Proficiency in library software

Exceptional communication and customer service skills

Professional Profile

General Terms

Excellent communication skills Analytical mind

Inquisitive Reliable Quick learner

Specific Experience

 Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science

 6 years’ experience working with faculty and administration to support school’s


 8 years experience providing information literacy instruction and reference services to patrons

 8 years experience providing library

orientation, database instruction, collection development, reference services, and library outreach .

 4 years experience developing program philosophy, objectives and services as a member of library planning and school accreditation teams.

 8 years experience with library software such as Millennium, Horizon, and OCLC A well written résumé sets you apart from the crowd!


U.S. State Department Information Resource Officer:


Federal Library Jobs (Librarian is Series Number Search: 1410):




Presidential Management Fellows Program (Students about to graduate)

o o o LibGig o

UT School of Information JobWeb (Over 200 postings in last 30 days)


UT School of Information Online Job Site Listings



8 Federal Librarian Description




10 Fantastic Opportunity Contact Information Ron Pollock Phone: 512-663-6870 E-Mail:



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