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Apr 2 15

Three Ways to Include Testimonials on Your Resume

by Heather Rothbauer-Wanish, Freelance Writer

As you send your resume to a potential employer, you may be wondering how you can make your information stand out above other candidates’ resumes. We know that everyone has included qualifications, professional experience, and education. But, have you considered adding testimonials and endorsements to your resume? Read below for three ways to use this valuable information.

  1. Add testimonials from supervisors and managers – corresponding to each job position. If you did a great job as a Marketing Manager, then gather a written testimonial from the CEO and include that sentence underneath your Marketing Manager achievements.
  2. If you are looking to add an entire section to your resume and have three to five testimonials from various people and different employers, add a section titled “Testimonials” or “Endorsements.” This will show that you have multiple people that think you are a great candidate.
  3. Is your resume two pages, but you have a large gap or white space at the bottom of page two? Instead of leaving it blank, add one or two testimonials to this section. Not only does this show glowingly reviews of your work, it allows the reader to end with positive thoughts about your potential candidacy for the position.

When asking for testimonials, be sure to confirm that it is okay with the writer to use the information on your resume. And, only add those testimonials that actually say something. Don’t add a testimonial that says, “Great job!” Instead, add written reviews that are specific—something like, “Heather led 18 managers throughout a new program implementation, increasing sales by 32% during her tenure. We would absolutely welcome her back in any leadership role.”

Finally, remember to ASK for testimonials or written recommendations. These tiny marketing pieces can be utilized on your resume as another piece of your personal marketing puzzle.

We are always excited and honored to help today’s job seekers. If you have questions about resumes, cover letters, or interviewing techniques, contact us!

Mar 15 15

Three Things You Forgot to Include on Your Resume

by Heather Rothbauer-Wanish, Freelance Writer

As you start to piece together all of the information for your resume, you may become overwhelmed with dates of employment, responsibilities at each position, and achievements while working for others. However, keep in mind that a resume shouldn’t simply be a detailed list of your work history. Oftentimes, people forget to include additional information—information that can be critical to catching the eye of a potential employer.

Freelance or Contract Projects

According to a recent survey from Elance, over 53 million Americans provide freelancing in a variety of areas. Whether you worked as a writer, photographer, or project manager, these freelance and contract projects are important. Not only do they show a particular skill-set within an industry, it also demonstrates your ability to ‘jump in’ with an organization and provide the services they need—all at the right time, the right price, and the right place.

Entrepreneurial Spirit

What if you are attempting to re-enter an industry that you left many years ago? An employer may wonder what you were doing throughout those years. Many of my clients have their own business ‘on-the-side.’ Don’t forget to include this information in your resume. This type of work can show a hard-working nature, the ability to schedule time, coordinate employees, and build your own income. These are all transferable skills that can be utilized in future positions.

Continuing Education

No matter where you have worked, chances are that you have attended training within your company, at the industry level, or through a national association. If you do not have a college degree or advanced education, this section becomes vital to showcasing your desire to better yourself in your career. Include the names of the trainings, along with the organization that led the events.

Remember that your resume should demonstrate what is unique about you, the skill-sets that you have obtained, and how those experiences could positively impact your future workplace. Be sure to include the items listed above in addition to your career history.

Do you have a resume question or would you like a free resume review? Contact us today!

Mar 3 15

How to Make Your Resume Stand Out

by Heather Rothbauer-Wanish, Freelance Writer

So, you’re about to send your resume out into the abyss that is known as today’s job search market. Rather than hope and cross your fingers that someone (maybe even a human being) will see your information, why not make your resume information stand out when you design the document. You can’t count on an applicant tracking system (ATS) to screen your document and put it in the ‘yes’ pile without some thought going into the resume up-front.

First, have clear sections on your resume. The applicable sections can include a career summary, areas of expertise, professional experience, education, and community involvement. Be sure to space these sections apart and add some type of border to each dividing section, ensuring that the human eye or computer system can clearly see a new section.

Next, use quantifiable information whenever possible. Consider the difference between saying, “Successfully increased sales during tenure,” versus “Increased sales by 52—to $2 million—within a 5-month time frame.” The second statement has more impact because there is a percentage, time, and sales dollar amount included.

Finally, make your accomplishments stand out from the rest of the text. Consider using bold text and/or indenting the accomplishment or achievement statements, drawing attention to these and immediately capturing the eye of the reader.

Take time to plan your resume. Get it ready before you need it and put some thought into the accomplishments and style of your document. After all, this document represents you and is the one thing that a potential employer will base a decision on before they meet you? Does your resume live up to your expectations? If not, consider hiring a professional resume writer or contact us today for a free resume critique.

Feb 25 15

Paid vs. Non-Paid Work Experience on Your Resume

by Heather Rothbauer-Wanish, Freelance Writer

As you make your new, up-to-date, and awesome resume, you start making a list of all of the things you have accomplished, the volunteerism you have contributed, and the job duties for all of your workplaces. Then, you begin to list your internships, community organizations, and church activities. Suddenly, you have a huge inventory of information and you have no idea how to include it. Does this sound familiar?

Before they contact me, many clients struggle with trying to figure out where to put this information on their resumes. How are you supposed to include both paid and unpaid work experience? Or, do you even need to do so? Should your internship experiences be broken out separately? Just because your work experience or volunteer experience was not paid doesn’t mean that it is not applicable to your job search. Please see below for three important reminders for adding both paid and non-paid experience on your resume.
Think relevance. The resume is not about you—it’s about what is important to a potential employer. For example, if you are seeking an accounting position and have worked at a workplace as a bookkeeper, also volunteered as your church treasurer, and had an accounting internship—all of that information is relevant. All of that information could potentially be included under your work experience.

Use your headings wisely. Instead of listing sections as “Paid Work Experiences” or “Internships,” name your section “Relevant Professional Experience.” This means that all information contained therein is relevant, but doesn’t necessarily mean that you were paid for it.

Unpaid work experience can be critical when you are switching industries. If you have been working within a particular industry for 10+ years and now want to switch to a different focus, unpaid work experience may be your ONLY experience. List this “Relevant Professional Experience” first and be sure to emphasize these skills.

Don’t be afraid to include your unpaid work experience, community involvement, and internship experiences directly in your professional history. Both paid and non-paid work experiences show that you are driven, have honed skills, and exhibited abilities that can be utilized in future positions. However, remember to only include that information which is both timely and relevant.

Do you have additional questions about your resume, cover letter, or LinkedIn profile? Contact us today for a free resume critique – we would love to help your information shine!

Feb 20 15

Is a Professional Resume Writer Worth It?

by Heather Rothbauer-Wanish, Freelance Writer

Sometimes, I will hear people say, “I can’t believe that you write resumes for a living. Don’t most people just write their own?” And, my answer is that, yes, many people choose to write their own resumes. However, did you also know that many people have difficulty writing and speaking positively about themselves? Please see below for the top three reasons why you should consider hiring a professional resume writer.

#1 – They will be able to extract information that you hadn’t even considered. A good resume writer knows how to ask questions, use the proper key words, and dig a little deeper to find the accomplishments at your past positions.

#2 – A professional resume writer is up-to-date on formats, technologies, and industry buzz words. Did you know that you should no longer use an objective on your resume? And, no one should use the word “I” within the document. If you aren’t sure what today’s trends are for resume writing, you may want to consider hiring a professional resume writer.

#3 – How much money are you losing while you sit and stare at your old resume? Figure out how much money it is costing you each day to not get started on your new, updated, and forward-thinking document. While hiring a professional resume writer may cost dollars up front, you will quickly find that the investment is worth it when you land your new job.

The bottom line is this—decide if you really have the time, know-how, and desire to craft your own resume. If not, this may be the time to hire out the process. And, if you want a resume writer that has gone through additional education, please be sure to hire a Certified Professional Resume Writer.

Questions about the resume writing process? If so, please contact us at Feather Communications. And, remember that we ALWAYS offer free resume critiques – find out if your document is up-to-par with your competition. We look forward to hearing from you!

Jan 28 15

The Importance of Personal Networking During Your Job Search

by Heather Rothbauer-Wanish, Freelance Writer

While looking online for your next job opportunity, many people get frustrated, exhausted from the search, or fed-up with the long application process. In today’s economy, searching online for job openings is an important part of the process. However, it is not the ONLY aspect that you should consider while seeking the next move in your career. In fact, many people underestimate the importance of personal networking during the job search.

Recently, I worked with a client that had casually met with a business acquaintance and mentioned that she may be looking for a different opportunity. The person told her to send her resume and cover letter to her—just in case there was a potential fit with the organization. Guess what? Less than a month later, my client was contacted because they are creating a new position and she may be the perfect. The job is not advertised nor will it be posted online. It is only because of the personal networking that my client has a chance at moving ahead in her career.

If you are interested in building your career opportunities, build and utilize your personal network. If your job search is not a secret, tell people that you are actively searching. Be specific and let them know the types of positions you are seeking. If you are a “stealth job seeker,” then tell only one or two trusted individuals that you are actively looking for a job so they can remember your information when a job arises.

Next, be sure to schedule time for personal networking. Make it a priority within your schedule. Attend local Business After Hours events, sign up for a workshop within your field, or invite a trusted colleague to lunch. Write down your personal networking goals. For example, “Attend one networking meeting and invite Bob Smith for lunch during February.” Make your goals as concrete as possible and assess them at the end of each month.

Finally, be prepared. While you don’t want to be pushy, keep a copy of your resume and your personal business card with you at all times. When meeting with business acquaintances and colleagues and they ask for your information, you will have it readily available. This will show that you are prepared, organized, and eager for that next job opportunity.

As someone that has built my business from the ground-up and utilized in-person networking greatly to accomplish this, please email me with any personal networking questions: heather@feather-communications.com. And, if you are ready to move forward with your job search, please visit our website.

Jan 21 15

Dr. Heather Rothbauer-Wanish Chosen as Speaker for 2015 NRWA Conference

by Heather Rothbauer-Wanish, Freelance Writer

Feather Communications owner, Dr. Heather Rothbauer-Wanish, has been chosen as a breakout speaker for the 2015 National Resume Writers’ Association (NRWA) Conference in Charlotte, North Carolina.

The NRWA Conference is designed to provide advanced training and education about the latest trends, issues, and technologies impacting the career industry. The conference, held annually, caters to professional resume writers, career coaches, and educational institution placement professionals. During the conference, held in September 2015, Rothbauer-Wanish will present a session titled, “Top 10 Methods for Marketing Your Resume Business on a Budget.”

“I’m excited to provide this session and look forward to sharing the knowledge I have gained during my seven-year entrepreneurial journey,” Rothbauer-Wanish said. “Job seekers have many options when writing their resumes and I’ve been able to cultivate a resume client base through networking, consistent branding, and word-of-mouth referrals—I’ll be sharing some of these techniques during my presentation,” she continued.

Rothbauer-Wanish also provided a session during the 2014 NRWA Conference in Denver, Colorado. “I attended the conference for the first-time in 2014 and was extremely impressed with the collaborations and professionalism of the attendees. I’m looking forward to participating again this year,” she concluded.

For more information on resume writing, please contact Feather Communications at 715-559-6378 or email heather@feather-communications.com.

Jan 16 15

5 Things to Leave Off Your Resume

by Heather Rothbauer-Wanish, Freelance Writer

As you start to design your new, forward-thinking, and exceptional resume for today’s marketplace, you may be worried about all of the items you need to include in the document. From education to professional experience, you want to ensure you cover it all to land that next great job opportunity. However, there are certain things that should NOT be on your resume.

First, do not include an objective statement. If you are sending a resume to a potential employer, the objective is to obtain an interview and, eventually, a new job. Utilize this space for something that means more, such as a targeted career summary.

Next, don’t feel as if you need to list every single job position you have had since leaving high school. If you have been working for 20+ years, you may choose to only list more recent years on your resume—and, that’s okay. In fact, for most of my clients, I do only include the last 10-15 years of relevant positions.

Third, unless you are working at a well-known Fortune 500 company, you don’t need to include a summary of the organization. Use this space to discuss YOUR accomplishments and the responsibilities that you had while working at the company. After all, the resume isn’t about the places you have worked; it’s about what YOU can do for a new employer.

Fourth, don’t include the statement, “References Available Upon Request.” This is a waste of space and it is understood that you will provide references when the time comes during the interview process. Instead, add volunteerism or community involvement in this section.

Finally, and perhaps most important, don’t include personal information. There should be no references to your marital status, number of children, religious affiliations, or a photograph of yourself. Including any of this information can turn into a human resources nightmare and may put you out of the job competition.

If you’re concerned that you have this information on your resume and would like to know more information on how to eliminate it, please contact us at Feather Communications and we will work with you to ensure your document is prepared professionally and ready for the job searching process.

Jan 6 15

Get Your Resume Ready for the New Year

by Heather Rothbauer-Wanish, Freelance Writer

Are you ready for the New Year? Have you made your New Year’s resolutions? Did one of them include landing a new job in your 2015 future? If so, now is the perfect time to gather your information and ensure it is updated if and when you decide to move forward with your job search.

First, if you haven’t been organized in the past, now is the time. Ensure you have backups of your resume in several places. Save it on your computer hard drive as well as on an externally-stored flash drive or hard drive. In addition, print out a hard copy and keep it in a file.

Next, obtain copies of your college transcripts. While you may not need these for each position, they are required for certain fields and specific organizations. It can take several days or weeks to get these in the future, so be sure to order them now. If they are sent in an envelope, don’t open them as they won’t be considered ‘official transcripts.’ If needed, ask for a second copy that you can keep on-hand for future reference.

Third, keep a running list of all professional organizations to which you belong, along with committees and volunteerism. These can be critical to showcasing community involvement and extracurricular activities. Employers are consistently seeking candidates that go above-and-beyond the call of duty at work and are immersed in outside organizations.

Finally, keep all of your information in a safe and labeled location. When working with my resume clients, I can’t tell you how often they come to me and need a refreshed resume within a few days. By keeping organized and getting ready for the New Year, you will have the information you need to move forward.

And, if you are interested in working with a Certified Professional Resume Writer, I would love to work with you. I’ve helped hundreds of clients with their resumes and cover letters.  Please feel free to contact me today!

P.S. If you are interested, I also offer a free resume review. That’s right–free! Email your resume to me and I will offer you constructive feedback on how to improve it–send yours today!

Oct 31 14

Feather Communications Owner Receives Polka Dot Powerhouse Award

by Heather Rothbauer-Wanish, Freelance Writer

On Saturday, October 25, Dr. Heather Rothbauer-Wanish, owner of Feather Communications, received the “Extraordinary Business Woman of the Year Award” for the Eau Claire Chapter of Polka Dot Powerhouse. Polka Dot Powerhouse is a rapidly-growing, unique, and refreshing community for women’s business and personal networking.

Heather has been involved with Polka Dot Powerhouse for over two years and truly enjoys the camaraderie, business relationships, and friendships that have blossomed since joining this group. Furthermore, she enjoys the opportunities of being able to visit various Polka Dot Powerhouse chapters throughout the area.

“Being elected to receive this award means the world to me. There are so many amazing business women in this organization and to be voted on by my peers is humbling,” Heather said. “I’m excited to continue my journey with Polka Dot Powerhouse and look forward to the continuous opportunities it offers in both my personal and professional lives,” she concluded.

For more information about Feather Communications services, please contact us today!