How full-time parents can reclaim a full-time job

Posted by Guest Contributor

07:30 AM

You don't have to be paid for your efforts to list them as work experience on your resume.

By Lisa Vaas


Sonja Frye’s kids were getting older, and she decided she wanted to return to the workforce. The problem was, she didn’t have a resume. She hadn’t worked in years, she told her resume writer, Mandy Minor. What experience could she even put on a resume?

Frye had plenty of work experience, said Minor, co-founder and president of J Allan Writing and Design Studios, who helped Frye write a new resume. She just called it by a different name.

Minor interviewed Frye for several hours and mined a treasure trove of work experience related to her field that would impress any employer. Most of it was related to her position as a council representative to the advisory council of an 800-student elementary school in Florida. There she managed a $419,000 budget overseen by two leadership groups; it represented 100 stakeholders and drafted a 25-page report on the organization’s future direction.

Topics: Resume

How To Close The Gaps In Your Resume

Posted by Amanda Augustine

04:12 PM

Prove you’ve kept your skills relevant during time off by showcasing your unpaid experience. 


You took time off to raise a family and now it’s time to return to the workforce. Whether your time off was voluntary or beyond your control, the job search can be daunting when your resume contains employment gaps.

Many stay-at-home parents fail to recognize the valuable experience they’ve gained while managing the household and raising children. Consider how many of the following core competencies can be attributed to you as you prepare to update your resume and return to the workforce.

Topics: Ask Amanda, Resume

Resume renovations for your spring job search

Posted by Amanda Augustine

04:32 PM

Use these tips to dust off your job application materials and spruce them up for spring. [TWEET]


Here in New York it’s finally starting to feel like spring! Many of us use this season as an excuse to unclutter our closets and reorganize our work spaces. It’s also a great time to reevaluate our job-search tactics and give them a thorough cleaning.

If your current resume isn’t delivering results, it might be time to spruce it up or even start fresh. Below are articles with top tips to help you renovate your resume this season.

Topics: Ask Amanda, Resume

13 ways your resume can say 'I’m unprofessional'

Posted by TheLadders Contributor

07:00 AM

Hiring pros share the faux pas they find in real resumes, including wacky e-mail addresses, defunct phone numbers and cookie-cutter templates.


No offense,, but if nobody has told you yet, we’re telling you now: That e-mail address is not making you look particularly professional.

Unprofessional e-mail addresses are just one way of sending hiring managers the wrong message. If you want to be taken seriously when you apply for jobs, you need to put some polish on your resume, your cover letter and everything contained therein. Hiring professionals repeatedly run across these red flags that scream “unprofessional.” A number of recruiters and HR managers shared with TheLadders common errors from their own professional experiences.

Topics: Resume

Resume, meet Technology: Making your resume format machine-friendly

Posted by TheLadders Contributor

08:00 PM

How to format a resume so that the software recruiters use to store resumes doesn’t garble your document – and your chances.


You’ve probably heard this advice for making your resume stand out: Sprinkle in plenty of juicy keywords so recruiters will pluck your document out of the pile.

But these days, the first review of your resume is more likely to be a software program, known as an applicant tracking system (ATS), than a human being interested in the quality of your paper stock and the power of your prose. While those qualities will be important in subsequent rounds, your first challenge will be to win over a very sophisticated machine that plays by its own complex rules.

In these competitive times, is a grab-bag of keywords really enough to ensure your resume rises out of that mysterious electronic swamp? If not, what else do you need to know about the processes that happen inside these ATSes — systems that are, in fact, fueled by sophisticated data-warehousing technologies — to stand the best chance of getting your resume in front of human eyeballs?

Topics: Resume

7 mistakes that make your professional resume – and you – look old

Posted by Amanda Augustine

06:35 PM

Are your job applications saying the wrong thing about you?


Resumes, like many other marketing materials, have an expiration date. As technology changes and the job-search process becomes more mobile, it’s important to reevaluate and edit this important document periodically.

Your resume is a reflection of you – and you don’t want recruiters thinking you’re outdated because your document is. Here’s how to know if your resume needs an update. [TWEET]

It’s become too long

An eye-tracking study by TheLadders found that the average recruiter spends only six seconds reviewing a resume before deciding if it’s worth a closer inspection. Maximize your exposure by limiting your resume to one page if you’re new to the workforce or two pages if you’re a seasoned professional. Remember, your resume should always highlight the skills, experience, and accomplishments that are most relevant to your job goals.

Topics: Ask Amanda, Resume

Why your job search isn’t successful

Posted by Amanda Augustine

10:00 AM

We’ve isolated five common job-search problems and are giving you the solutions.

Are you stuck in a job-search rut? You might be making one of these classic mistakes. Read on to learn some of the most common job-search errors, and what you can do to get your job hunt back on track.

Topics: Ask Amanda, Interview, Resume

Job Search Strategies For Handling An Employment Gap

Posted by Amanda Augustine

08:00 AM

Overcome a resume gap when you’re back in the job hunt with these five tips. [TWEET]


In today’s tough economy, many professionals find themselves with substantial gaps in their work experience. Whether you were laid off, took some time to care for a family member or battled a serious illness, it can be challenging to explain these gaps in your resume. Here are five tips to help you handle the employment gap during your job search. [TWEET]

Topics: Ask Amanda, Resume

Start Bragging to Advance Your Career

Posted by Amanda Augustine

03:50 PM

Chronicle your professional accomplishments to manage your career. [TWEET]


Whether you’re updating your resume, preparing for salary negotiations, or are in need of a pick-me-up after a bad day at work, a brag sheet is a useful document to own.

In its simplest form, a brag sheet is a place where you record all your professional accomplishments and contributions. Some people store this information in a Word document, while others prefer a mobile format such as Evernote. Whatever format you choose, here are five tips to help you build a powerful brag sheet that can help you advance your career.

Topics: Ask Amanda, Salary, Resume, Changing Careers

Navigating the Resume Application Minefield

Posted by Amanda Augustine

02:08 PM

Craft a resume that clears the gatekeepers and lands in the hiring manager’s hands.


TheLadders conducted a study finding that the average recruiter spends six seconds reviewing a resume before deciding if it’s worth a closer inspection. Translation: you have six seconds to make the right impression!

The recruiter isn’t the only gatekeeper you need to worry about. Before your resume reaches a human being, it will typically get screened by a piece of software known as an Applicant Tracking System (ATS).

Here are 5 resume tips to help you get past these initial application gatekeepers.

Topics: Ask Amanda, Job Application, Resume