Coast rocks the workforce!

Submitting a Resume to Coast

...and how it differs from sending it to other companies
There's no shortage of resume advice out there. A quick Google search for "resume tips" yields an overwhelming amount of information, much of it contradictory.

That inconsistency is natural - every employer has different expectations, and every job is different. If you want basic one-size-fits-most advice, we recommend Alison Doyle's Top Ten Resume Writing Tips on About.com.

Be careful: nobody (even About.com) can tell you how to apply to every job out there. However, we can tell you how to apply for a job with Coast.

Submitting a resume that follows these guidelines will give you the best chance at landing an interview with us:

1) Focus on relevant experience
It’s a tough market right now, and we won’t fault you if you have a few jobs in your work history that aren’t relevant to the position you’re currently seeking. However, our customers want resumes that are specifically tailored for their current job positions.

For example: if you’re applying for a job as a computer technician, but you had to work as a waiter for a few months to pay the bills, go ahead and keep the waiter experience on your resume, but don’t bother filling in a lot of detail. Instead, add more detail to your computer technician experience.

2) Include relevant skills in your work experience
Coast sorts through a lot of resumes, and we give priority to resumes that list important skills. For example, if we are looking for a surface mount machine operator, we’re going to look at resumes include the word “surface mount” first.

Many resumes have a list of skills in a separate section. That’s a good idea, but we also need to see that skill in context in your work experience. For example, simply listing “Surface mount machine operator” in a skills section is better than nothing, but we need to know where and when you actually operated a surface mount machine.

3) Staffing firms in your work experience
When your work experience includes staffing firms, please list the company where you were actually working, not the staffing firm that placed you.

For example, if you were a temp for ABC Staffing, but you were placed at Texas Instruments, please list that as “Texas Instruments” in the work experience area of your resume. If you want to, you can add a note saying you were placed by ABC Staffing, but we need to see where you were actually working.

4) Keep the appearance simple...
There’s no guarantee that your resume looks the same on our computer as it does on yours… not to mention how it looks after your resume passes through our tracking system, to the client, through their HR system, and onto your future boss’s desk.

Your resume doesn’t need to look fancy. Lots of columns, tables, and tabs can be especially problematic, as different software can cause them to get rearranged. When in doubt, list the job title, employer, and work dates on separate lines, all aligned to the left, like this:



Unfortunately, sometimes we see resumes with work experience formatted like this:



Putting the work dates and company name side by side in separate columns looks attractive at first, but it makes it harder for applicant tracking systems to process. It's not worth it.

5) ...but keep the text detailed
Don't be afraid to use a lot of detail in your work experience, if it's similar to the job you're applying to. Technical jargon is fine!

Let's say you're applying to a job in electronics assembly, and you have a strong work experience in that field. Did you do soldering? Great - tell us about it! What kind of soldering was it? Printed circuit boards? Fine pitch soldering? When and where did you do it?

Are you applying to be an front desk assistant? What computer skills do you have? Microsoft Office? How about telephone skills? Have you ever had to deal with difficult customers at a front desk job? Did you have to handle cash or process credit card payments? Did you have to book appointments for customers or coworkers?

Any job duties you had at similar jobs will help you land the next job. It is better to have too much detail in your work experience than too little.

However, remember step 1: keep it relevant. We want to see the details of experiences that are similar to the job you're applying for.

6) File format
“Which file format should I use?” is one of the most common questions – and every recruiting firm is different, so what one company asks for may not be right for a different company. When applying to jobs out there in the wide open job market, pay attention to the job postings. Most of them request a specific file format.

At Coast, we prefer Microsoft Word (.doc/.docx) format. We have to remove identifying information and add our own notes to a resume before we send it to our client, and it is easiest for us to do that with Microsoft Word.

We can accept resumes in plain text (.txt), rich text (.rtf), and PDF, but we don’t like them as much.

We cannot accept resumes in Wordperfect (.wps) or Apple Pages (.pages) formats. We will reject these and ask you to send them again in Microsoft Word or plain text.

Finally, and most importantly...

7) Don’t sweat it too much - we're here to help.
We know that resume writing is stressful. We're more interested in your skills on the job than we are in your ability to write a resume.

Before we send your resume off to our customer, we will work with you to make sure your resume is as accurate and attractive as it can be. We will talk to you to find out how you are most valuable as an employee - and we'll make sure that comes through to your future employer.

Resume coaching is just one of the services we offer to candidates who apply to Coast.

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