My friend and frequent client Brad Abare has a great blog post offering advice for job seekers. In a nutshell he says to forget about the resume and find a way to show your passion. It’s nearly impossible for a resume to communicate everything it needs to, so you need to find a way to make yourself stand out.
My wife did that with her current teaching job when she turned a pack of crayons into her resume. When school started the other teachers were still talking about it. I remember applying for jobs straight out of college and I neglected to do anything creative. I just sent out resume after resume (and it was a sharp looking resume). It’s no wonder I had only a single interview.
When I was looking for a job four years ago I remember having a hard time finding positions I could get excited about. I worked hard on creative cover letters to go with my sharp looking resume, but I didn’t do much more. And I didn’t get very many interviews either. (Sometimes I think it’s a miracle I’m able to make do.) I think you have to go outside the box to find and get a job that’s more than a paycheck. You can’t settle for the posted jobs (I ultimately didn’t; I started my own company), and you can’t rely on a typical resume (being typical won’t get you noticed).
Finding a job is never easy, especially in an economy like this one, but you have to stand out. I think Brad offers some good advice, and it comes from someone who has seen lots of resumes, interviewed lots of candidates and hired quite a few good folks.