[colug-jobs] A first resume

Zach Villers zachvatwork at gmail.com
Tue Jun 7 09:53:37 EDT 2016

Again thank you both for your feedback.
On Tue, Jun 7, 2016 at 9:00 AM Scott Merrill <skippy at skippy.net> wrote:

> On Mon, Jun 6, 2016 at 11:31 PM, Rick Hornsby <richardjhornsby at gmail.com>
> wrote:
> >
> >> On Jun 6, 2016, at 16:38, Zach Villers <zachvatwork at gmail.com> wrote:
> >>
> >> Hello World,
> >>
> >> I currently work as a PMI certified PM at Time Warner (now Charter) and
> >> would like to move into a sys admin or related position at a new
> >> company. I made a first stab at a resume and would appreciate any
> >> feedback, guidance, or interview requests.
> Thanks for being brave enough to start this discussion.  There are a
> lot of nuances to job searching and resume building; and it often
> seems like people closely guard what works for them, without sharing.
> > So I'll provide my feedback publicly not to be publicly critical, but so
> that others can be publicly critical of my feedback and to offer my
> suggestions to others who are in your boat.  I'm looking at your resume
> from the perspective of it being handed to me as a potential candidate for
> a job.
> Rick's comments are great, and I agree with almost all of them.
> Personally, I dislike lists of skills or technologies without specific
> context.  These often look like a contrived effort to pad out the
> resume.
> Fun anecdote: a resume I reviewed for a junior candidate listed
> something like "experience with Linux and BSD".  When asked "Which is
> your favorite BSD flavor, and why" the candidate admitted that they
> were padding their resume.  It was a painful experience for everyone
> involved.
> If you include a list of skills or products, be prepared to speak
> cogently about each and every one.
> > Content-wise, the resume is a little bit light.  A 1 sentence summary of
> your role at each of your chosen positions is fine (including "Community
> Experience").  But please give me more.  Give me the technologies and
> projects you worked on.  Give me a quick snapshot of your successes in the
> role.
> >
> > Questions I would ask you in an interview would be things like "So Zach,
> tell me specifically about how you tracked and improved dispatch agent
> performance as a dispatch manager.  What was your specific role in
> implementation of large-scale systems integration and what was your
> contribution; what does large-scale mean to you?  Not including your RHCSA,
> what qualifications do you have that would make you a good Linux SA?"  Get
> ahead of those questions, albeit briefly, in your resume.  Be pithy and
> leave them wanting more, but give them enough to justify passing your
> resume onto the next step and spending the time with you for an interview.
> This is great advice.  Simply listing tasks accomplished is the bare
> minimum for a resume.  If you can include quantification of success,
> that puts you ahead of the game.  What efficiencies have you
> personally made happen?  How much better are things as a result of
> your work?
> > Don't go overboard though and give everything away -- as one of my
> business instructors reminded us over and over, the sole job of the resume
> is to get you a interview.  That's it.
> I'm going to disagree a bit here.  The resume PLUS the cover letter is
> what will most likely get you an interview.  See below for more.
> > If you want a job doing RHEL work, make your RHCSA more obvious. If
> you're going to put that in your professional summary, make it the first
> thing, not the middle thing.  I'm not 100% sure about this as a general
> matter, but I wouldn't mind if someone's resume was titled "Zach Villers,
> RHCSA".  I would remember that.
> +1
> > A link to your github is not necessarily bad.  However, be prepared for
> a technical interviewer like me to pick something of yours from there and
> challenge you to explain it, justify it, justify why you didn't do this or
> that, etc.  I'm not trying to be a jerk, I want to know first of all, if
> the work is yours (you'd be surprised) and I want to know how and why you
> think about a problem/solution the way you do.  If you want to show off
> code samples, you might want to provide a shortened url to a gist (ie a
> link each to a Python script and a shell script) or something along those
> lines.  I pulled up your github page and was having a hard time sorting out
> what was yours, what was someone else's (forked repos), but more
> importantly I had no idea what you wanted me to look at.
> It's not too hard to see which repos are yours, versus which are
> forked, by clicking the "Sources" link at the top of this page:
>    https://github.com/gr3yman?tab=repositories
> But few of your repos have useful READMEs in them, so I can't really
> tell what they are.  Make it easy for me to know what you're doing.
> > The interests section is a tough call.  I would set it aside while you
> work on elaborating out the sections about your professional career, and
> maybe if there's reasonable room left, maybe put that back in.  You don't
> want it to seem like fluff you're using to fill up the page.
> Personally, I think most of what you have in the interests section
> would be better suited in a cover letter.  This gives you a prose
> vehicle to relate your personal interests to your technical skills,
> and then to draw a connection to the professional job for which you
> are applying.
> Some people encourage tweaking your resume for the job, but I've had
> much better experience adjusting the contents of my cover letter to
> the job.  This allows you to steer how people see you, rather than let
> them draw conclusions based on an impersonal and forgettable resume.
> (And after you've looked at more than 2 resumes when hiring, they're
> *all* forgettable.  Nothing personal!)
> >> I do have an RHCSA cert and contribute as I can with Fedora
> Expound on this in your cover letter.  If you have links to
> publicly-viewable activity within Fedora you could include those in
> your resume, too. Making it easy to see what you've done, and how
> you've done it, goes a long way to distinguish you from other
> candidates.  Draw connections between the work you do for Fedora and
> the work you'd like to do professionally.
> > While I understand you might be hesitant because maybe your technical
> skills aren't as deep as you'd like, don't sell yourself short.  Your
> resume doesn't necessarily read as entry level to me.  Folks with aptitude
> and work experience (which you have) - even if it isn't in the exact skill
> needed - I would probably consider qualified for mid-level technical roles,
> with a track toward senior-level without a huge delay.
> +1
> Another thing to consider is listing your involvement in COLUG, and
> other user groups.  Any presentations you've given would be good
> links, too.  If you haven't given any presentations, consider doing
> so!
> Many employers value community involvement, but don't specifically ask
> about it in job descriptions.  Your involvement in the technical
> community expands your professional network, and gives you access to
> answers that others might not have.  Celebrate this fact.  Consider
> getting involved with LOPSA, or Ohio LinuxFest, or any other local
> technical group. Give presentations as you can.  Submit talks to
> conferences as you can.  Talk about these activities in your cover
> letter.
> Good luck!
> Scott
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