Job Hunting in the 21st Century – The New Reality

Hi: I’m your new Monday blogger, and my goal from now on is to help you get your week started off on the right track and energize your job search.

Since this is my first post, I’ll take a few lines and briefly introduce myself and clue you in on why you should take my advice seriously.

I’m Perry Newman, CPC (that stands for AIPC Certified Personnel Consultant) and I am a successful New York City based Executive resume writer and career strategist, and CEO of First Impressions Resumes ( I have also been an executive recruiter in several fields as well as being the Founder/Managing Partner of Harrison Dane Associates, a Park Avenue Executive Search firm. Overall I have over 30 of years experience helping people make employment and career transitions in multiple industries, from coast to coast.

Throughout my career I have screened more than 20,000 resumes and written and edited well over 2,500 resumes in more fields and job titles than I care to remember. What’s more, I have worked in the trenches with human resources professionals and hiring authorities at all levels in numerous industries (from Fortune 100’s to start up dot.coms); and I have personally helped hundreds of people find a new job over the past 4 decades ranging from CIO’s and Executive VP’s to file clerks and secretaries when I first entered this business.

My initial piece of advice to you may seem self serving or self promoting, but I assure you it is not. There is a “New Reality” out there and what I will tell you is the truth as I see it.

So here goes:

You may be a great writer but not everyone is capable or competent enough to write their own resume. Especially since the downside of submitting a mediocre, cloned or inferior resume can be catastrophic to your job search and your career.

I won’t dispute that having a degree from an Ivy League college or some other top university is a great credential; however in and of itself it does not qualify a person as a professional resume writer who will influences a client’s (or their own) future as very few professionals do.

Beyond having an excellent command of the English language, a qualified resume writer must have an extensive business vocabulary, plus hands-on insight and knowledge about how decision makers in all walks of life think and what they look for in a resume in different fields and job titles. The higher up the food chain you go the more expertise you need, and these skills can not be acquired from a book or reading online advice articles. It takes years working in the trenches and screening resumes, plus interviewing hundreds of hiring authorities until you get a feel for how to present each client in the best possible light.

So to start off, this week I will offer the following advice to those brave souls who want to write their own resume, and to those of you who want help but don’t know how to tell the difference between an expert resume writer and a fraud.

A: Your resume is a snapshot and not an autobiography – it must be short and to the point. One page for most resumes and two pages maximum – even high level executives.

B: Your resume must REFLECT VALUE not facts. This is what separates your resume from the competition and what separates professional resume writers from the wannabes.

C: No one cares WHAT you did in your previous jobs; what hiring authorities and decision makers want to know right now is HOW WELL you performed. People are hiring you on what you will do in the future and not what you’ve done in the past. Concentrate on the job you want, not the jobs you’ve already left.

D: After 10 seconds of visual scanning your resume goes into 1 of 3 places: the circular file (70% end up there), the “this person is a possibility pile” (22% end up there), and the “I better meet this person ASAP before my competition does” immediate action pile.

Where do you want your resume to end up?

E: Seek professional help in writing a resume, or at the very least have a professional critique your work before you submit it. a poor First Impression can not be undone.

F: Beware of ATS (Applicant Tracking Systems) & OCR (Optical Character Readers); they are the 21st Century’s new HR gatekeepers. Bonus Tip: ASCII formatting helps here.

Career Rocketeers, if you need some professional advice, I will be happy to speak with you and/or critique your resume for free. I can be reached at 718-332-6130 up until 10pm EST, Sunday to Thursday. Or just email me your resume with contact info and I will let you know what I think

You can also find additional resume and job search advice on my blog: Job Hunting in the 21st Century – The New


Perry Newman, CPC, is President/CEO of First Impressions Resumes and can be reached for a no cost consultation at 646-894-4101.

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