I’m in the interesting and enviable position of having an open (entry-ish level) position on my team, here at EMC. Over the years I’ve brought a few people into the company, either directly or indirectly. But it’s been a while, and it’s interesting to see the state of the hiring process … and the people trying to get hired.
When I was looking for my first industry job, putting your email address on your resume meant something about how tech-savvy you were (I get it — I’m old). Now, I attach that same significance to a social media link. Not many of my entry-level applicants have those. A few have LinkedIn profiles, but none of them have personal blog URLs, Twitter IDs, or other social networking information. This doesn’t surprise me much … social media is a bit of a polarizing issue. I can certainly imagine some hiring managers seeing a twitter ID and assuming certain unpleasant things about the applicant. I wonder what guidance new graduates are getting these days on the issue beyond the obvious?
I have been surprised to see more resumes having intern or co-op experience, which was rare when I was graduating. I’m pretty sure my first resume had my Kelly Services data entry job on it, so yes, I’m impressed by your stint at the big company down the road … no matter how banal the tasks may have been, I’m sure you learned some lessons that you won’t have to repeat wherever you land your first full-time position.
I still see applicants who list every type of technology under expertise, and then have no way of explaining it in the rest of the resume. I appreciate you listing every microchip whose machine code you’re proficient in, but since none of your listed academic or professional projects have used that, I’m going to assume it’s either a hobby or a class you took and have since forgotten. Other folks seem to just empty the buzzword bingo slide onto their resume — after the first couple programming languages and database vendors you list, they all start to blend together. I assume you can handle an IDE; I don’t need to see a list of seven of them.
I’m sure it’s challenging to write a resume as a new graudate. You have very little with which to differentiate yourself from your peers. I’m always excited to see a good description of a large academic project, especially one where peers cooperated and achieved something beyond any individual’s reach. But if your resume is 5 pages long and you’ve only been out of school a year, we may have different expectations about what this document is supposed to do.
Speaking of which, I am surprised at the number of people who haven’t taken the step of getting some assistance with proof-reading their resumes. I recognize that people have varying degrees of comfort with the written word, and a resume is so unlike “real” writing that it’s hard to infer much from one, but blatant errors still surprise me. I want to remember your resume for the right reasons, not because you’re the only one who didn’t run a spell check.
Overall, I am excited to be seeing so much interest in the position, and looking forward to bringing a new person into the team. Hopefully soon I’ll be writing about how great it is to interview so many bright and passionate applicants who so clearly have the potential to be excellent engineers….
(on a side note, it was difficult to choose how to spell resume. In the end, I went with simplicity. Feel free to review the usage notes on the wiktionary page and then come scold me.)