We are delighted to share this article from Google’s senior VP originally posted on themuse.com
Laszlo Bock, Google’s senior vice president of people operations, estimates that he’s personally reviewed more than 20,000 resumes over the course of his career.
First of all, we’re sorry for him.
But secondly, we’re pretty sure he knows a thing or two about what makes a resume shine and—perhaps more importantly—get tossed in the trash.
In fact, he shared his insights earlier this week in a LinkedIn Influencer post. Here’s what he had to say about the five biggest mistakes he sees candidates making, plus our expert tips for making sure your resume doesn’t include any of these blunders.
Mistake #1: Typos
We know—you’ve heard it. But while “this one seems obvious,” Bock writes, “…it happens again and again. A 2013 CareerBuilder survey found that 58% of resumes have typos.”
Have someone else read your resume—often, other people can more easily spot errors because they haven’t been staring at the page for hours. If that’s really not possible, use Muse editor-in-chief Adrian Granzella Larssen’s tips for proofreading your own resume: “It’s helpful to temporarily change the font, or to read your resume from the bottom up—your eyes get used to reading a page one way and can often catch new errors when you mix the format up.”
Finally, once you’ve reviewed it, stop making those final tiny changes. “People who tweak their resumes the most carefully can be especially vulnerable to this kind of error,” explains Bock, “because they often result from going back again and again to fine tune your resume just one last time. And in doing so, a subject and verb suddenly don’t match up, or a period is left in the wrong place, or a set of dates gets knocked out of alignment.”
Mistake #2: Length
Thinking about letting your resume creep onto the next page? Think again. “A good rule of thumb is one page of resume for every 10 years of work experience,” says Bock. “A crisp, focused resume demonstrates an ability to synthesize, prioritize, and convey the most important information about you.”
For most of us, Bock’s rule of thumb means one page—two, tops. If you’re having trouble squeezing all of your experience onto one page, remember that a resume doesn’t have to (in fact, shouldn’t) be a chronicle of your entire career history—it should be a marketing document that uses your relevant skills and experiences to illustrate to the hiring manager why you’re the one for the job. To hone in on what really matters and cut the fluff accordingly, try Liz Elfman’s tips for getting everything on one page.
Mistake #3: “Creative” Formatting
When it comes to resumes, Bock says, substance definitely matters more than style. He’d definitely prefer to see a simple, traditional, perfectly formatted resume than something creative that’s tough to read. “Unless you’re applying for a job such as a designer or artist, your focus should be on making your resume clean and legible,” he writes.
When in doubt, go simple and spend most of your time sharpening your bullet points rather than making them look great. Then, make sure the formatting looks great no matter what program it’s opened in. As Bock recommends, “If you can, look at it in both Google Docs and Word, and then attach it to an email and open it as a preview.” Saving your resume as a PDF rather than a .doc file should help alleviate any formatting problems in different programs.
Mistake #4: Confidential Information
In his post, Bock shares a story of candidate who worked for a top consulting firm with a strict confidentiality policy. So, when the candidate wrote on his resume that he “consulted to a major software company in Redmond, Washington”—a.k.a. Microsoft—he was immediately rejected. Sure, the candidate didn’t break the policy, per se—but he definitely didn’t inspire trust in his potential employer.
For anything you put on your resume (or say in an interview, or publish on a blog, you get the picture, follow the New York Times test, says Bock: “if you wouldn’t want to see it on the home page of the NYT with your name attached (or if your boss wouldn’t!), don’t put it on your resume.”
Mistake #5: Lies
As Bock explains: “People lie about their degrees (three credits shy of a college degree is not a degree), GPAs (I’ve seen hundreds of people “accidentally” round their GPAs up)… and where they went to school (sorry, but employers don’t view a degree granted online for “life experience” as the same as UCLA or Seton Hall). People lie about how long they were at companies, how big their teams were, and their sales results, always goofing in their favour.”
And we probably don’t have to tell you what hiring managers think about that.
Just remember what your mama told you: Honesty is always the best policy. If you feel like there’s part of your background that’s not quite up to snuff, your best bet is creative—but truthful—positioning.
These mistakes seem pretty basic, but if Google sees them all the time? You can bet every other employer does, too. The good news is, they’re all totally avoidable. Make sure your (one- to two-page) resume is squeaky clean, and you’re already ahead of the game.
Posted by Tracy on Thursday, September 25th, 2014.
First ScotRail Survey
We are delighted to share with you this article from Railway News regarding First ScotRail’s latest performance survey.
Image courtesy of First Group
The 90% rating equals First ScotRail’s highest ever rating in this key category. Improving performance figures and better timetables have been key drivers in ScotRail achieving this rating, a significant eight percentage points ahead of UK train operators.
The independent National Rail Passenger Survey also revealed that ScotRail had improved in 26 categories year on year.
Thirteen factors have achieved their highest ever score, reinforcing ScotRail’s commitment to continually improve its customers’ overall experience of rail travel.
The key measure of value for money – at 56% – is now almost 25% higher than the score for rail operators nationally, reflecting the positive impact of the Scottish Government-led freeze on off-peak fares, targeted promotional activity, the removal of scores of fare anomalies and the roll-out of added value services such as wifi.
The score for the attitude and helpfulness of staff rose once more, demonstrating that ScotRail’s investment in dedicated ‘World Host’ customer service training is making a positive impression staff and passengers. On-train scores in this category rose to 85% – up 9 points – which compares strongly with the national average of 64%.
Incremental improvements were also achieved for car parking, on-train toilets, and personal security, all of which have been focus areas in the past.
Managing director Steve Montgomery said he was very pleased that customers were recognising ScotRail’s efforts and pledged that the operator will continue to seek out improvements.
“We have improved in the vast majority of areas, some significantly , so our focus now is on maintaining these, while re-doubling our efforts where our scores are lower. Our ambition is to see improvements across every category.”
- See more at: http://www.railway-news.com/railway-industry-news/first-scotrail-results-in-rail-passenger-survey#sthash.gLLnXViy.dpuf
Posted by Tracy on Tuesday, August 19th, 2014.
Are you between the ages of 18-24 years old and looking to start a career in Childcare?
We will help you move your career to the next step through our employability programme.
Posted by Tracy on Thursday, July 10th, 2014.
Over the last few months frontline rail workers in Scotland have participated in the ‘Games Ready’ WorldHost customer service programme, which has been specially tailored to prepare them to welcome hundreds of thousands of visitors who will flock to Glasgow and Gleneagles in July and September respectively. In total, more than 3,000 First ScotRail staff have benefited from the specialist customer service training ahead of the Commonwealth Games and Ryder Cup this summer.
WorldHost programmes provide a gold standard in training for any business that relies on day-to-day interaction with customers and were successfully used to train 100,00 volunteers and staff at the London 2012 Olympic Games and Paralympics. As WorldHost is on the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF), it provides an additional benefit for both employers and employees: once a qualification has an SCQF level and credit points it attracts national and international recognition for the learners who achieve it. WorldHost was credit rated by City of Glasgow College at SCQF level 5 with between 2-8 credit points, depending on the programme being undertaken. Each SCQF credit point represents 10 hours of learning.
The six-figure contract to deliver the course to ScotRail staff was won by Dumfries-based training provider, Minerva People, in partnership with the People 1st Training Company, which holds the UK licence for the WorldHost training programmes.
ScotRail is now Scotland’s first public transport company to achieve WorldHost Recognised Business status – a nationally-recognised benchmark of customer service excellence. To highlight all of the hard work going on behind the scenes, ScotRail has also used its own staff for its Commonwealth Games advertising campaign.
Tricia Hunter, managing director of Minerva People said: “We all cannot believe how quickly the time has passed and that we have successfully delivered the customised ‘Games Ready’ WorldHost training programme on time and with so much pleasure. We have worked with the same 12 WorldHost licensed trainers to deliver the programme throughout the duration of the contract. The passion, commitment and enthusiasm of everyone - all First ScotRail staff, Minerva trainers and those involved from People 1st – has been quite amazing to witness as this highly interactive and participative programme ensured engagement from beginning to end. We now wish all First ScotRail staff great success in delivering their outstanding customer service during the exceptionally busy period of the Commonwealth Games, Ryder Cup and the many other major events going on throughout Scotland over the remainder of 2014. We are all so proud to have played our part and congratulate ScotRail on their achievements.”
Sharon Glancy, managing director of the People 1st Training Company, said: “It’s brilliant to see an iconic Scottish name like ScotRail putting such an emphasis on its customer service, and we’re thrilled that they chose WorldHost to help them get ‘Games Ready. We’ve already seen how the fantastic welcome staff and volunteers gave at the London 2012 Games played a huge role in boosting the nation’s reputation as a tourist destination, and Glasgow 2014 presents a fantastic opportunity for Scotland to build a similar legacy. Training over 3,000 people in just a few months is no mean feat, so I’d like to congratulate Minerva People on their great partnership approach – also congratulations to ScotRail on becoming Scotland’s first WorldHost Recognised Business in the transport industry!”
Steve Montgomery, ScotRail’s managing director, said: “Our people are often the first point of contact for people visiting Scottish destinations, and the welcome they offer can have a major impact on the tourism experience as a whole. With the spotlight well and truly on Scotland this summer, we want to showcase our business, and the nation, in the best possible way.”
For more detail on the SCQF and the benefits of having your learning programmes credit rated, visit www.scqf.org.uk/employers/recognition-for-your-own-training/.
ENDS – Issued by SCQF Partnership – July 2014
Pic - Representatives from Minerva People, People 1St Training Company and First ScotRail pictured in Glasgow Central station alongside the trainers who delivered the WorldHost programme
Posted by Tracy on Thursday, July 10th, 2014.
Can’t believe we are nearly finished World Host training with People 1st and ScotRail, its been an amazing journey!
Posted by Tracy on Wednesday, June 11th, 2014.
Posted by Tracy on Thursday, April 17th, 2014.
Thank you Skills Development Scotland for creating this fabulous film celebrating the success of Certificate of Work Readiness!
Posted by Tracy on Tuesday, April 15th, 2014.
Last year in May 2013, Minerva People along with members from the Dumfries and Galloway Childcare Alliance, local
employers and partner organisations launched the new Childcare Employability Training programme.
Minerva People’s team designed, developed and delivered a successful programme working closely with childcare employers. Now a number of young people are coming through who have greatly benefitted from it. Over and above them gaining invaluabl work experience they attended weekly workshops at Minerva providing knowledge on the world of work and childcare related topics. They also worked for the new ‘Certificate of Work Readiness’ qualification jointly awarded by SQA and Skills Development Scotland (SDS), funded by SDS from the Employability Fund.
Everyone involved are delighted to share the success of this programme and congratulate all candidates. We wish them well in their future careers and in many cases within the childcare sector where we are delighted to be continuing developing them through their Modern Apprenticeship.
Thank you to everyone involved from Minerva’s dedicated and extremely hard working team and to all the employers for ensuring young people see that childcare is a profession to be proud of working in.
We are delighted to share with you materials created for the celebration of success. Check out our booklet here- Minerva Childcare Alliance Booklet
Posted by Tracy on Thursday, April 10th, 2014.
We are happy to announce that we support the Scottish Chambers of Commerce Graduate Incentive Programme. The programme was officially launched by the First Minister in August 2013 and seeks to support the creation of 270 new, permanent graduate jobs for small to medium sized businesses in Scotland. The programme is delivered nationally by Scottish Chambers of Commerce via the local Chamber of Commerce network. Offering a financial incentive and invaluable pre and post recruitment support, the programme can empower small businesses to employ a graduate and support the growth of their company.
The programme is much more flexible in compaison to many others currently being offered. The graduate does not have to be unemployed or underemployed and can be up to the age of 30 with a minimum salary of £14k. Other offers are subject to the graduate being domiciled in their specific LA area only, the GRI does not have this restraint.
Get Recruitment Support to hire a graduate for your business. Make Young People Your Business!
Posted by Tracy on Wednesday, February 5th, 2014.
We are delighted to be working in partnership with First ScotRail and People 1st Training Company to deliver a bespoke training programme with a proven track record of success. World Host customer service training has been used to train over one million people worldwide. The programme provides a gold standard in training for any business that relies on day-to-day interaction with customers for success.
Minerva People have brought together professional, passionate and motivational trainers to deliver this recognised product. Throughout this programme we will meet the high standards set by First ScotRail and the WorldHost Programme as we embark on this journey of customer service excellence. Below is the press release from ScotRail.
Thousands of ScotRail staff in training for Scotland’s summer of sport
24 January 2014
More than 3,000 First ScotRail staff will benefit from specialist customer service training ahead of the Commonwealth Games and Ryder Cup this summer, the train operator revealed today.
Frontline rail workers including drivers, ticket examiners, hospitality, and station staff will take part in the WorldHost course, which has been specially tailored to meet the challenges they will face when hundreds of thousands of visitors flock to Glasgow and Gleneagles in July and September respectively.
ScotRail said it is aiming to equip its staff with even better skills to help them offer a world-class welcome. In particular, they will be briefed on: Interesting information about local attractions and landmarks near their individual stations, the events and sports stars expected to attract visitors to their locations or routes and how excellent customer service can lead to wonderful memories of Scotland.
The six-figure contract to deliver the course was won by Dumfries-based training provider, Minerva People, in partnership with the People 1st Training Company.
The People 1st Training Company holds the UK licence for the WorldHost training programme – which was used successfully for 100,000 volunteers and staff at the London 2012 Olympic Games and Paralympics.
ScotRail is also aiming to become Scotland’s first public transport company to achieve WorldHost Recognised Business status – a nationally-recognised benchmark of customer service excellence, supported by Visit Scotland.
Steve Montgomery, ScotRail’s managing director, said: “Our people are often the first point of contact for people visiting Scottish destinations, and the welcome they offer can have a major impact on the tourism experience as a whole.
“With the spotlight well and truly on Scotland this summer, we want to showcase our business, and the nation, in the best possible way.”
Christie Scott, who works in the booking office at Balloch station, is one of the first employees to complete the training. She said: “I’ve really enjoyed the training. It’s taught me to be more confident when dealing with customers and to pro-actively consider visitors’ needs, which I know will be especially important this summer.”
Tricia Hunter, managing director of Minerva People, said: “As a Scottish business, we know there is a real buzz about the opportunities that hosting the Commonwealth Games and Ryder Cup will bring to the nation. Our trainers are committed to delivering a lasting legacy to Scottish tourism – and we are thrilled that First ScotRail has chosen to work with us.”
Sharon Glancy, managing director of the People 1st Training Company, said: “London 2012 proved that the right customer service training can have a major impact on visitors’ perceptions of a nation. It’s great to see ScotRail is delivering a similar boost for Scotland.”
ScotRail, which runs 95% of passenger services in Scotland, will announce more details about its Commonwealth Games train timetable in early 2014.
Posted by Tracy on Friday, January 31st, 2014.