If you answered yes to any of these questions, the solution is to make sure that employers know that you are what they need with a resume that sets you apart. In today's increasingly competitive employment market, your resume is more important than ever. If your resume is written effectively, you will:

Get Interviews

for jobs you want and know you can do.

Be Asked

for interviews for jobs in organisations in which you want to work.

Maximise

your chances of getting a new job quickly if you have recently been retrenched.

Influence

recruitment consultants about where to place you.

Convince

recruitment consultants to submit your resume to their clients.

Your resume determines the number of interviews you get, influences the quality of the jobs you are offered and plays a pivotal role in the salary you can command.

If you do not have a well-written resume, you significantly increase the risk of being overlooked for the career opportunities you want and deserve. This is because your resume must be written in a way that make it easy for hiring managers to identify that you are what they are looking for. To do this, you need to understand how hiring managers think when assessing candidates. If you can get inside the heads of the decision makers, you have an edge.

My name is Tom Hannemann. Based on feedback from clients since 1993, I write resumes and prepare responses to selection criteria that significantly increase their chances of being selected for interviews. I also help people prepare for interviews using a unique method based on approaches adopted by people who consistently get job offers in competitive markets.

The experience and credentials that equip me to help people advance their careers include:

Working with one of the world’s largest recruitment firms.

You are therefore engaging someone who understands what recruitment consultants want.

10 years experience as an HR specialist and HR manager.

This ensures that you are getting help from someone who understands the recruitment process, how HR Managers think and the ingredients of an effective resume.

10 years experience as a senior management consultant specialising in HR and organisation development.

This means that you get the benefit of my understanding of how hiring managers think, what they value and what will convince them to invite you to an interview.

An MBA from Australia’s leading business schools,

which means I can interpret the impact and benefits of your achievements and experience.

Further evidence that I can make an outstanding contribution to your career is that:

• SEEK, Australia’s leading career portal, has enlisted me to provide expert commentary and advice on resume preparation since 2000.

• I have been the Australian Institute of Company Directors’ preferred resume writing service since 2005.

• Several recruitment firms refer candidates to me to help them overhaul their resumes so that they can successfully compete for the best career opportunities.

• Several career coaches recommend their clients to me so that they have the tools they need to position themselves for new career opportunities.

On this website I'll share with you what I look for when overhauling resumes. I'll also show you how you can make sure that your resume does the job you want it to and how it can lead you to the job you want. In addition, you find out how to prepare responses to Selection Criteria.

Once you are ready to engage me to help you advance your career, you can select and purchase the services I offer directly from this web site.

If you would like to discuss your needs and circumstances or to clarify any aspects of my services and approach, please contact me by email to arrange a time to talk.

tom@advance-yourself.com.au

Testimonials

Is your resume consistently getting you interviews:

for jobs you really want?

in organisations in which you really want to work?

If you’ve answered, “Yes” to both questions, that’s great. But if you’ve answered, “No” to either, your resume is probably not good enough.

Put yourself in the shoes of a potential employer recruiting for a new member of staff - you’d be busier than normal from the extra work involved in dealing with recruitment consultants and candidates and reviewing a pile of resumes. This is why it’s essential that your resume is of the highest calibre to distinguish you from your competition.

A resume that just outlines your career history and experience is not enough to convince employers that they should interview you. To get your foot in the door, you must have a resume that provides them with what they are looking for.

To do this it must present your experience, achievements, contributions and expertise in the most compelling, succinct and appealing way so that you optimise your opportunities to secure highly sought after roles in the most desirable organisations.

Your resume must be professional, crisp, clean and elegant to enable your potential employer to fully and easily assess your capabilities and understand the value you can add to their organisation.

Testimonials

When writing resumes for clients I use the following checklist to ensure they get the highest quality resume that gives them a competitive advantage and opens doors that would otherwise remain closed.

Go ahead, assess your current resume against my resume checklist and tips below to see how you could improve it. Even if you don’t have a resume, this checklist will help you prepare an effective one if you want to spend the time and effort writing it yourself.

If you adopt all the points in the checklist, you will have a resume that is worth reading and which could improve your career opportunities. Each point is important. Your resume must incorporate all of them. If you leave one or two out, you could see your efforts on the others go to waste.

Many people talk about their achievements from a personal perspective rather than from their employer's. For example, some people include in their achievements that they were promoted to a more senior role or selected for a special project or won a trip or that they developed their expertise in a new technique. While these are achievements (for the individual), what is missing is an indication of the value or benefit to the employer. Prospective employers want to know what contributions you have made to the organisations for which you have worked. They want to know what you did to earn those awards or rewards or what you did with what you learned. They want to know what you have done for others so they can decide whether you are likely to be able to do something of value for them.

Some people leave out the value or impact of their achievements. For example, I read many resumes where a candidate says something like: "Led a review of the company's sales function and recommended the centralisation of the order processing department." What is missing here is the impact or benefit. What happened as a result of the re-structure? Or, some people say: "Developed and implemented an effective induction program.". What was the benefit or value of the induction program? What improved as a result?

The claims you make in your resume about your accomplishments and contributions are strengthened and have more credibility if you can provide examples and evidence. For example, if you introduced a method that improved workforce productivity, what indicators demonstrate that productivity increased and what was the benefit of the increase in productivity? If you reduced error rates, by what percentage? If you improved your employer's reputation in the market, what evidence indicates that this occurred and what was the benefit to the organisation of this improved reputation?

If your achievements are quantifiable, don’t just provide dollars or other “raw” numerical data because these are not very meaningful until they are put into a context. For example, if you increased sales by $1m from last year, this might be impressive if the company was a $5m a year business. However, if the company was a $500 million a year enterprise, a $1m increase is not nearly as impressive. Therefore, express increases in sales, decreases in costs, increases in market share and other changes to an organisation’s key performance indicators as percentages or fractions.

If you improved customer satisfaction to 90%, or if you increased on time in full delivery to 95% or if you reduced machinery downtime to 1%, indicate the previous period’s figure. This provides the reader with an understanding of the magnitude or scale of the improvement. (For example: improved customer satisfaction ratings from 75% to 90% within 12 months.)

If an achievement is not easily quantifiable, you can still provide a meaningful indication of the value of the achievement. For example: "Reduced duplication and enhanced the re-usability of test suites by improving testing and planning through discussion forums to enable team members to share knowledge and identify areas for improvement."

One of the frustrations an employer or recruitment consultant faces when reading a resume is when the method, approach or strategy adopted to get the result is not clear. This is important because employers will want to know whether your approach or style would suit their culture and way of doing things and whether you adopt strategies that seem sound and logical.

For example, if you increased sales by 10%, how did you do it? There are many ways of increasing sales. The value of the achievement is obvious, but was it achieved by penetrating existing accounts further with the same services and products or by introducing new products to existing clients or through a marketing campaign that attracted new clients? Or was it achieved by increasing the number of sales people? The how can often be as important as the what.

A resume is like a brochure, where you are the product. This means that the benefits of inviting you to an interview must be obvious from the outset. An effective approach is to summarise your competencies, skills, areas of expertise - your "offer" - up front. The rest of the document should then corroborate and expand on your offer and provide examples to substantiate what you claim to be your key strengths.

This last point is important. I have seen an innumerable number of resumes where a person claims to be an excellent contributor to a team, only to find no evidence in the rest of the document to suggest that they had ever worked in one. I recommend the competencies or key strengths section of your resume (see point 5 below) be limited to those attributes, qualifications, areas of expertise and knowledge that really are your strong suits. This means that a list of 30 (and I have seen this) so called key strengths is unlikely to enhance your credibility.

For example, if you claim to be an effective leader, then your experience and achievements should verify this. In this case it would mean, at the very least, that you have had significant experience in being responsible for managing the performance of one or more teams during your recent past. At best, it would mean that you have improved the performance, morale, motivation and turnover rates of the teams you have led.

There is a corporate myth that your resume will only get 30 seconds attention. This is not true. Some resumes only last 15 seconds before they reach the circular filing cabinet. It takes most people about that long (some claim even less) to form an opinion about you based on your resume. If they like the first half page, what it says about you and how it depicts you, it will stimulate them to invest in reading the rest. It's a bit like a newspaper or magazine article. If the headline and the first few paragraphs interest us, we are more likely to put effort and time into the rest.

Therefore, ask yourself: "What is of interest to my reader in the first half page?" Most people ask the reader to read their home address, e-mail address, phone numbers, date of birth, marital status and all sorts of other detail before they get to the heart of the matter.

In addition, many people start with their qualifications and training. Unless you are applying for entry level graduate positions, this is of little interest to the reader at this point.

The first half page or so should be like a teaser. It should stimulate interest and arouse curiosity. You can achieve this by providing a brief career overview of your areas of expertise and setting out your offer up front.

One of the main weaknesses I see in resumes is when people provide the reader with a list of duties or tasks and think that is all the reader wants to know. In many cases the reader will already be familiar enough with the nature of the work you have done to know what your duties were. For example, if you are a Financial Accountant for a commercial enterprise, the reader, either a recruitment consultant specialising in finance roles or a manager in charge of the company's finance or accounting function, will have a reasonably good grasp of what a Financial Accountant does. In fact, if you were to examine position descriptions for the Financial Accountant of 50 different organisations, you will find an 85% overlap. Just look at the job advertisements for ten or so positions in your own field of expertise and note the similarity between the position requirements.

Therefore, you need to ask what you can tell the reader that they might not know and that will interest them. An effective resume will deliver more than your responsibilities or duties being concisely summarised. The reader will want to know what you were accountable for ensuring or achieving, what value your current and previous jobs were designed to add to the business of the organisation, the level, nature and scope of your accountabilities, your decision making authority and the impact the job has or had on the organisation.

This level of information helps potential employers and recruitment consultants understand what you were asked to achieve and the level at which you were or are working. This helps them decide whether you are capable of operating at the level of the positions for which you are applying.

Providing the reader with information at this level will also help differentiate you from your competition because most people don't go to this depth. It will provide employers with greater insight about your abilities and the level of responsibility you have had. It will help convince employers that you know what you are talking about and have thought through your value to the organisations with which you have worked.

There should be a logical flow and structure to the resume. You can read 11 books on writing resumes and find 12 opinions on the best way to structure and organise them. At the end of the day, the reader needs to know where you worked, when you worked there, the nature of the business of the organisations for which you worked (unless they are household names), what you were accountable for ensuring or achieving and what contributions you made or value you added. They need to know what you have to offer and how to contact you.

Many people agonise over whether to use a functional or chronological or hybrid format. The resume books will advise you what is most suitable for different situations. The main issue is whether the document has a structure that leads the reader from the general to the specific and whether it allows the reader to gain a quick overview and provides easy access to the details if they need them.

Some people go to extraordinary lengths by using sophisticated graphic design programs, charts, photographs, clip art and so on. Remember, you are probably going to send your resume by e-mail. Therefore, it should be created in Microsoft Word (saved as one version earlier than the current version in the market, since organisations might not upgrade their version as soon as it comes out), only use fonts that come as standard with Word and produce it in black and white, since most organisations will use a black and white laser printer and your efforts in selecting nice pastels, if you did, will look a bit washed out. Some people also use clip art. Clip art is cute, but cute is not usually what you want to sell.

Word has plenty of capacity to allow you to be a little creative in format and design. However, unless you are a graphics expert, I recommend that you keep things simple. Flamboyant attempts at "design" often fall flat unless you are trained. Some people try to create fancy cover pages. These are largely a wasted effort. They add no value. Remember, what’s important is substance, not form. Don't use fancy borders and other special "effects". They distract the reader from what is important and can unwittingly create suspicion in the reader's mind.

If you are confident and competent in using Word, tables can be used to create plenty of white space to help the reader scan the document and reduce fatigue. If you use tables, I recommend making each line of text around two-thirds to three-quarters of the width of the page – shorter lines are easier to read and aid concentration. Use font sizes that are easy to read. I have seen people use 9 point Arial or even 9 point Arial Narrow in an effort to minimise the number of pages used. Doing this can make it hard for the reader. Remember, your objective is to make it as easy as possible for your potential employer to want to read your resume.

If you are not confident or at least competent to an intermediate level, don’t use tables. They can be tricky and Microsoft, after all these years, has still not cleaned out all of the irritating “bugs” contained in the tables function.

A four or five page well laid out document that is easy on the eye and leads the reader smoothly through the information is more effective than something crammed into two pages that makes it impossible to find anything and requires the reader to make more effort than necessary to deal with the information.

The most persuasive writing is typically the easiest to read and understand. If your resume is full of jargon with technical terms or phrases only commonly used by a handful of people, the reader will reach their tolerance level much sooner than you want them to. I appreciate that some jargon is necessary. However there are two issues to consider.

Firstly, not every recruitment consultant, senior manager or Human Resources Manager will be as intimately familiar with the terms and jargon associated with your profession or industry as someone who uses it all the time. Therefore, write for a broader audience than your colleagues or immediate manager. Someone once told me that they would not work for anyone who did not understand the technical side of the job as well as they did. They are still looking!

Secondly, an employer and recruitment consultant will want to know whether you understand the broader implications of what you do, not just the terminology and technical components. By talking to them in more general business terms you create an impression that you understand more than your particular field of specialisation. This gives an even better impression that you might be a candidate for promotion in the future.

Some people have MBAs and other post graduate business or commerce qualifications. If you know someone who does, you may find that something strange happens to their speech and writing. The word "strategic" appears in every other sentence and twice in others. Perfectly adequate, simple terms and phrases become tortured and vague so that the reader has to read three times before they think they know what is being said. People are impressed by resumes that express achievements and accountabilities in clear, concise, unambiguous, direct and active terms.

A resume should reflect your individuality, your unique achievements, and your particular combination of skills, expertise, achievements and contributions. It should set you apart from the other applicants.

Remember that its likely that the reader is going to be dealing with dozens of resumes. You don’t know whether yours will be the first they read or whether it will be the last in a large pile at the end of a hectic day. Assume yours will be the last one in the pile. You must therefore be memorable.

Being memorable does not mean using what you think are creative methods to give your resume a unique appearance or by using quirky headings or phrases to attract attention. Unless you are an expert in graphic design or linguistics or have the writing style of a best selling author, keep it simple.

A rule of thumb is that the more effort and time you invest in attempting to make yourself distinctive, the more irritating your resume will be.

What differentiates you from the rest of the field are your unique achievements, contributions and the value you have added. No-one can replicate that.

The most effective way to distinguish yourself from almost everyone else is to:

  • Express your achievements in terms of the benefits and value you have added to your employers.
  • Clearly corroborate your achievements with evidence and examples.
  • Indicate how you achieved what you did.
  • Make your key strengths and abilities obvious and demonstrable.
  • Link your strengths to your achievements and accountabilities.
  • Give the reader a reason to read the rest of it after they've read the first half page.
  • Explain what you do beyond your job description.
  • Structure and organise your resume logically.
  • Ensure your resume is visually appealing and distinctive.
  • Use simple and straightforward language.

because most people don’t.

So, how does your resume measure up? When I overhaul resumes I make sure they do and, in the process, save clients a lot of time and effort.

If you write your own resume, make sure you understand the Resume Checklist and Tips . Cover all of those points and you will be on your way to a resume that could increase the chances of securing interviews for jobs you want.

Or, make it much easier on yourself: get some professional help. As a professional resume writer, I can help you write your resume. Many people only have their resumes professionally written after they have missed out on several opportunities that might not be available again. Don’t let that happen to you.

Unless you are a qualified mechanic, you probably rely on someone who is qualified to make sure that your car works well. In some ways your resume is like maintaining your car: if it isn't done properly, your career could stall.

Developing a resume to significantly improve your chances of opening the right doors demands highly developed specialised expertise, senior level experience and insight into the needs of hiring managers and recruitment consultants. It also requires advanced writing skills, the ability to understand the value of your achievements and the judgement needed to interpret your contributions so employers will conclude that you are a highly valuable asset.

Many people find this a challenge and stress themselves over it.

On the other hand, investing in having your resume written by a seasoned professional like me can:

Save you thousands of dollars

by significantly reducing the amount of time needed to secure the right job

Help you secure jobs with higher salaries

by positioning you appropriately

Significantly improve your job satisfaction

by positioning you for opportunities aligned with your career objectives and aspirations

Give you peace of mind

by delegating the process to a professional resume writer

Reduce stress

during what is often an anxious period

Save you the time,

energy and effort needed to improve your resume

I've helped thousands of people advance their careers. Many clients refer their colleagues, friends and relatives to me because I have helped make a significant difference to their careers. I can do the same for you.

Testimonials

Responding to selection criteria for jobs in the public sector can be daunting, frustrating and extremely time consuming. While this is particularly the case if you have not applied for public sector roles before, even experienced public sector managers and professionals find it a taxing exercise.

I have 10 years experience in the public sector in recruitment, selection and training roles during which I trained hundreds of managers in several agencies in assessing candidates against selection criteria. Subsequently, as a consultant engaged by the Public Service Commission, I played a key role in articulating and documenting the core competencies for the Senior Executive Service and the SES feeder group which formed the basis for the SES and executive selection criteria adopted throughout the public sector.

Every job in the federal, state and local public sectors, which includes all government departments, authorities and agencies, government owned business enterprises, police services, emergency service organisations, universities, TAFE institutes, local and shire councils and publicly funded schools has a set of selection criteria which a person in that job must meet to be considered suitable for that job.

Can you simply use your resume to complete these? The answer to that is, "Definitely not".

Many people find it challenging and difficult to respond to selection criteria. I make it easy and provide people with confidence that their applications will address the selection criteria to fully reflect their capabilities.

When you apply for a position in the public sector you will need to submit a response to the selection criteria for that position. Your response to the criteria must provide evidence of your experience, skills, expertise, qualifications and achievements which demonstrates that you meet the criteria for the position to the extent necessary to do the job to the standard expected by the organisation. Responses to selection criteria provide the information against which you will be assessed by the selection panel for the vacant position.

Responses to selection criteria require more detail about your experience and achievements than you would typically provide in a resume. In many cases you will need 3 – 5 paragraphs (half to one page) for each criterion to provide sufficient detail. Responses to selection criteria therefore provide information at a much more detailed level than you would normally provide in your resume. Your resume is a supporting document which provides the reader with a summary of your career and less important than your responses to the selection criteria when applying for positions in government organisations.

Many organisations impose word, character or page limits to restrict the length of the documents submitted by applicants. This is probably because many candidates used to submit 15 or 20 page documents which were too detailed and time-consuming for the selection panel. You need to determine whether the organisation has imposed such limits before you start preparing your responses to the criteria.

Composing your Response

An effective response to selection criteria should:

  • Explain the nature and extent of your experience
  • Outline your responsibilities relevant to each of the criteria
  • Show your accomplishments relevant to each of the criteria
  • Provide concrete examples which demonstrate that you meet each of the criteria

Specific examples enable you to demonstrate that you meet the requirements of the position. If a job requires a person to have the ability to negotiate, provide the reader with two or more specific examples of successful negotiations in which you have played a significant role. Describe the context, your goal or intention, your strategy or approach, the reason or rationale for the strategy and the outcome of the negotiation. Draw particular attention to noteworthy achievements.

Levels of Criteria

You will find several commonly used phrases or expressions in selection criteria which indicate the type or level of skill or ability or experience required for the role.

  • Awareness of involves the least amount of familiarity with a subject and can mean little more than having a perception or realisation of something.
  • Knowledge of refers to familiarity gained from actual experience or from learning, suggesting you need more than a passing familiarity with these subjects.
  • Understanding is more than knowledge. It requires having comprehension and perception of the significance of it. For example, to say you understand certain regulations or legislation means you grasp why the regulations were established, why they are important and how they relate to the role.
  • Ability means having the skills, knowledge or competencies to undertake a task or role.
  • Aptitude suggests suitability to carry out a task or role. That is, you have a leaning towards a particular skill or quality, such as, aptitude for policy formulation.
  • Capacity can mean that you are able to or qualified to perform a task. It suggests that you have the necessary skill or quality but may not have demonstrated it to any major extent.
  • Background in is often used to refer to educational or professional or technical qualifications or areas of specialisation.
  • Experience in means you must have done the work.
  • A proven record means that you must be able to substantiate any claims to the experience or skill, preferably with outcomes that have been documented. For example: 'a proven record in achieving sales targets’, means that you must document what you have done and achieved in these areas.

The following expressions indicate to you that claims must be supported with concrete examples which demonstrate depth of experience and/or capability:

  • Well developed - as in ‘well developed understanding of immigration policy', ‘well developed interpersonal skills'.
  • Demonstrated - as in 'demonstrated ability to use a word processor', ‘demonstrated qualifications and experience in marketing’.
  • Extensive - as in 'extensive experience in journalism and leadership programs'.
  • High level of - as in 'high level of appreciation of OH&S practices', 'high level experience in the preparation of speeches'.

Support claims with relevant, concrete examples. Don’t make claims based on personal opinion with no supporting evidence. Provide evidence that shows achievement and examples of experience. Instead of saying: "I possess superior liaison skills." , expand this with: "My liaison skills are demonstrated by ..." and follow with examples to illustrate the demands and complexity of the tasks.

Watch your verbs. Use direct, active verbs, rather than passive verbs and use verbs that indicate exactly what your contribution was. For example, to say - 'I assisted with the project' could mean you drafted a document, negotiated a deal, operated a photocopier or swept the floor! While such expressions can imply more than what your contribution was, they can also undersell your worth! Be specific and select a verb that properly describes your role.

Use plain English. Write clearly and concisely and make sure that what you write is direct, to the point and that there are no spelling mistooks!

Address all of the selection criteria individually. Do not attempt to address the selection criteria in a broad sweep, hoping to encompass each criterion. Address each element of each criterion clearly and precisely.

Be results oriented. Focus on what impact you have, what difference you make and what results you achieve.

The STAR Framework for Responding to Criteria

The letters STAR stand for Situation, Task, Action and Results.

I strongly recommend that you use the STAR framework to provide the structure to your responses to each criterion because this is the framework which almost every public sector organisation in Australia requires or expects people to use. People who use the STAR framework tend to get interviews, provided they actually meet the criteria to the extent needed in the job. People who don’t use the STAR framework tend not to get interviews. Although using this framework does not guarantee you an interview, not using it almost certainly guarantees that you won’t.

There is no need to retain the words Situation, Task, Action and Result in your response. These ‘sections’ or elements of your response are designed to guide your thinking and provide you with a structure.

Situation: Briefly describe a situation or set of circumstances or issue or problem you encountered which is relevant to the criterion.

Task: Indicate what you thought needed to be done to address the issue or problem or situation, why it was important to address the issue or problem or situation and what your role was.

Action: Describe what you actually did, how you did it and the level or extent of your involvement in resolving the issue or problem or dealing with the situation.

Result: Indicate the outcome or impact or result or benefit of what you did.

Example Response using the STAR Framework

Position: Branch Manager of a Bank (some banks are similar to public sector organisations and have selection criteria for certain positions).

Criterion: Experience in managing threatening or hostile situations where there is a significant probability of harm to customers and/or staff. (Be aware that selection criteria are often written in loose language which makes them subject to broad interpretation).

Response: (Note: you would not keep the words Situation, Task, Action and Result in the document you submit. They are included in this example to show you what is meant by each.)

Situation

When I was Assistant Manager of the Coolum Beach branch of the ANZ bank, two people wearing balaclavas and brandishing what appeared to be shotguns entered the branch about five minutes before closing. One of them shouted that it was a hold up, ordered everyone to lie face down on the floor and to do exactly as they said.

Task

As the most senior member of staff in the branch at the time, my responsibility was to ensure the safety of the customers and branch staff and to endeavour to alert the police and the bank’s central security service as soon as possible.

Action

Although I had wet my trousers, I managed to instruct all staff and customers in a clear and calm voice to immediately lie face down on the floor, to remain quiet and to follow all instructions given to them by the armed people. When one of the robbers was distracted by the sobbing of one of the customers and walked over to him to politely request his silence, I activated the alarm which alerted the police and the bank’s central security service that a robbery was in progress. One of the robbers instructed two of the tellers to put all the cash into the fake Louis Vuitton overnight bags the robbers had thoughtfully provided.

Result

The police arrived within a few minutes and apprehended the robbers outside the bank as they were exiting. No-one was physically injured and all the money was recovered. The bank’s trauma counsellors arrived and did their psychobabble thing. My dry cleaning bill was reimbursed by the bank.

Although the example above is not based on a real situation, it provides an example of how to use the STAR framework. The reader can understand that the applicant has been exposed to a dangerous situation, that they understood what needed to be done, that they took appropriate action and that the action they took contributed to a positive outcome.

Dos and Don'ts

Do

  • Provide clear evidence of how you meet each of the criteria by outlining relevant and specific examples which illustrate your experience and achievements.
  • Be specific and clear.
  • Use everyday business language: keep it simple and direct. Using fluffy, convoluted, verbose or unnecessarily complex language makes it difficult for the selection panel (they have to read many applications). This reduces your chances of being invited to an interview.
  • Use the active voice where possible by explaining what you did using strong action words.
  • Provide relevant examples to the selection criteria, and indicate that you have the types and levels of abilities, skills, experience that are in, and at the level required of the job.

Don't

  • Provide the reader with a summary of your beliefs, philosophy or knowledge (unless this is actually requested).
  • Rely on the sheer amount of experience you have in undertaking a task or doing a job. We all know people who have been doing a job for many years, but who are ineffective and inefficient.
  • Write a thesis on leadership, teamwork, communication, negotiation, change management or any other subject. Telling the reader what you know about a subject is not evidence that you have the skill or ability on the job.
  • Tell the reader things they already know. Informing the reader about what you think is effective communication or leadership or teamwork and so forth does not provide the reader with the information they need about your experience, skills and abilities.
  • Assert that you are committed to something. No matter how many times you say you are committed to the principles of EEO, equity, ethical practice and so forth, you can’t convince anyone of this unless you provide examples of experience or achievements which demonstrate you are. Being a member of a minority group does not mean you are committed to EEO.

 

There is no point in being invited to interviews if what you say and how you say it don't match the expectations your resume has set.

Many clients tell me they will be fine once they get to the interview only to find they don’t always get as far as their experience, achievements and fit with the job suggest they should.

After a couple of hours and a relatively modest investment, you will have learned invaluable techniques and approaches that will give you the competitive edge you need. It’s a matter of covering all bases and properly managing your risks.

We identify where you really need to focus and concentrate on the few essential elements that contribute most to success.

I won't provide you with a set of standard responses and phrases - there are countless books and articles which will provide you with those. At an interview, you need to present yourself in the best possible way. Most of us do not have the acting skills or confidence needed to consistently pass ourselves off as something we are not…not to a skilled interviewer. Nor should we. We’ll regret it.

I won’t give you a script. A script only works when you know what the other person will say and do. (There are other web sites advertising clairvoyants.)

You won’t get a list of the "do’s" and "don'ts" of interviews or interview "tips" - you can read books and articles on that. In any event, It's almost impossible to remember tips in the heat of the moment and they make you seem artificial and awkward.

The most effective approach is to be the best that you can be because that's what the employer will be buying and because that’s all you’ve got to offer. An integrated and authentic presentation of you at your best will achieve the best possible outcome.

My interview coaching session will help ensure that you are able to deliver your best possible performance. There are no second chances. No second takes. It’s a live performance every time.

 

When you engage me to develop your resume or your responses to selection criteria, we’ll follow a process which makes it as easy as possible for you. You won’t need to make appointments for personal visits or have extended phone consultations either during or outside business hours. Instead, you decide when you want to allocate the time to provide the input I will need.

The time frames below are indicative only and may vary according to my workload at the time. Where possible, time frames may be negotiated around your job application deadlines.

More Detail

If you already have a resume
1. Your existing resume will be overhauled to produce a first draft: the information contained in your resume is re-worked, re-organised and re-formatted to ensure that its current contents are organised, expressed and presented in the best possible way. It becomes a professional, appealing, crisp and easily read document.

2. Questions will be incorporated throughout the draft to obtain additional information from you about your experience, expertise, achievements and the challenges and issues you have faced. The perspective of a potential employer or an executive recruitment consultant is adopted to ensure that your new resume will give them the type, level and depth of information and the insight they will need to develop the appropriate perception of your capacity to contribute in the roles in which you are interested.

3. The draft containing the questions is emailed to you as a Word document.

4. You respond to the questions contained in the draft and return it via email.

5. Your responses are re-worked, synthesised, edited and integrated to finalise the document and the final draft is sent to you for approval.

6. Necessary additional adjustments and fine tuning are then made.

If you do not have a resume
A template to enable you to provide information about your career will be sent to you via email in Word format. You can then provide the information requested in the template and send it back by email.

This document then becomes your ‘existing’ resume and the above process is then followed.

I recommend allowing 6 - 8 business days for the entire process. If you need to submit an application more urgently, I can often accommodate urgent assignments.

Resume Overhaul

A re-write, re-format and re-design of your resume to ensure that it provides employers and recruitment consultants with the information they need in the way they need it so you can confidently compete for the best jobs in the best organisations where the competition is toughest.

Selection Criteria

Your responses to selection criteria will be composed in a compelling and persuasive way to maximise your chances of convincing selection panels that you have what it takes to contribute at the next level.

Interview Coaching

You will rapidly learn a unique framework to ensure you are fully prepared for interviews and techniques that enable you to manage the interview process to your best advantage, founded on the approaches adopted by highly successful candidates.

Resume Update

(updating a resume that I have prepared for you during the past three or four years) Updating your resume ensures you will always be prepared for career opportunities if you want to leave your current employer, if your job becomes redundant, if your employer goes belly up or if your employer merges with another organisation and you no longer feel that you fit with the new culture or with your new boss (or both).

LinkedIn Profile Overhaul

A LinkedIn Profile is virtually a must have. It should be designed to optimise your chances of being 'seen' by the people you want to see it. While it should be tightly aligned with the content of your resume, there are some subtle and not so subtle differences in the way your experience and accomplishments should be expressed, the tone and the level of detail.

Occupation Level

Level 1

Administrative, Technical, Graduate and Trades

Resume Overhaul
$230

Selection Criteria
$230

Interview Coaching
$195

Resume Update*
$125

LinkedIn Profile Overhaul
$125

Level 2

Management and Experienced Professionals

Resume Overhaul
$395

Selection Criteria
$395

Interview Coaching
$255

Resume Update*
$195

LinkedIn Profile Overhaul
$195

Level 3

Senior Executive

Resume Overhaul
$525

Selection Criteria
$525

Interview Coaching
$275

Resume Update*
$295

LinkedIn Profile Overhaul
$295

* A Resume Update inolves updating a resume I have already developed for you within the past three or four years. Otherwise, the appropriate service is a Resume Overhaul.

All resume development services include a cover letter template accompanied by detailed guidelines to enable you to prepare cover letters for any opportunity. Many clients tell me that this template is invaluable.

 

If you are ready to engage me to help you advance your career, select and purchase the services you need using the secure online payment shopping cart below.

If you would first like to discuss my approach and method or your specific circumstances and needs, please contact me by email to arrange a time to talk:

 

tom@advance-yourself.com.au

Engage Me to Help You Advance Your Career

If you would like to move ahead now, there are two options: Secure Online Payment or Direct Deposit.

1. Secure Online Payment

First select your Occupational Level (see the Fee Table above). Then select the service or services you want within that Occupation Level and click the Add to Cart button. You will then be taken to a secure online shopping cart where you can complete the payment process.

Level 1

Level 2

Level 3

2. Direct Deposit

You can deposit directly into my bank account and send me a confirmation of your deposit by email.

Bank Account details:

Account: Tom Hannemann
Bank: Commonwealth Bank of Australia
BSB: 062010
Account Number: 10384846

Reference: Your Last Name

(I suggest copying and pasting the BSB and Account Number into the relevant fields in your online transfer form to ensure that the correct information is entered.)

Don't have a Resume?

Please email me to find out how to best advance your career.

tom@advance-yourself.com.au

Payment Terms and Conditions

Once you have engaged me, you have agreed to pay the full fee. No refunds are made after you have authorised or made payment, unless I am unable to deliver the service.

Testimonials

If you would like to learn more about my services and approach, or discuss your circumstances and needs please email me to arrange a time to talk by phone or Skype.

tom@advance-yourself.com.au

Testimonials

I respect the privacy rights of all clients, customers and visitors to my website, so I have policies and procedures to ensure that your privacy rights are never violated. The following outlines my privacy policy and the measures I have taken to safeguard and protect your privacy.

Q. What happens to my information when I communicate with you?

When you share your email address with me, you consent to receive communications from me, either by email or by updating or posting notices on the web site.

Q. What kind of information do you collect?

When you sign up for any of my mailing lists, for example, Interview Coaching Email Course (coming shortly), I ask you not only for your email address, but also your name so that I may address any communication to you personally. If you are getting in touch using the Contact Form, then I also ask for your Country, so that I have a sense of which time zone you are in. If you are making a purchase, I ask you for your first and last name, your email address, your billing address, phone number and credit card information.

Q. What do you do with my information?

Other than to process any purchase you may make, and to communicate with you via email and the newsletter, absolutely nothing.

Q. Do you share my information with anyone?

No, unless you provide me with your explicit written permission.

Q. How do you use my email address?

I only use your email address to send you what you signed up for. Other than that, occasionally, I may also send information on current services, products, specials and promotions.

Q. Anything else?

You acknowledge that using this site signifies your assent to my privacy policy. I reserve the right to change this privacy policy, at any time, without advance notice. If I change the privacy policy, I will post those changes on this page so that you are always aware of what information I collect and how I use it.