Monday, October 24, 2016

Resume Mistakes

This post focuses on five mistakes commonly made on resumes and is taken from an article posted on LinkedIn by Lazlo Bock, SVP, People Operations at Google.

 " Mistake 1: Typos. This one seems obvious, but it happens again and again. A 2013 CareerBuilder survey found that 58% of resumes have typos.  In fact, people who tweak their resumes the most carefully can be especially vulnerable to this kind of error, because they often result from going back again and again to fine tune their resumes 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. I see this in MBA resumes all the time. Typos are deadly because employers interpret them as a lack of detail-orientation, as a failure to care about quality. The fix?

Read your resume from bottom to top: reversing the normal order helps you focus on each line in isolation. Or have someone else proofread closely for you.

Mistake 2: Length. A good rule of thumb is one page of resume for every ten years of work experience. Hard to fit it all in, right? But a three or four or ten page resume simply won't get read closely. As Blaise Pascal wrote, "I would have written you a shorter letter, but I did not have the time." A crisp, focused resume demonstrates an ability to synthesize, prioritize, and convey the most important information about you. Think about it this way: the *sole* purpose of a resume is to get you an interview. That's it. It's not to convince a hiring manager to say "yes" to you (that's what the interview is for) or to tell your life's story (that's what a patient spouse is for). Your resume is a tool that gets you to that first interview. Once you're in the room, the resume doesn't matter much. So cut back your resume. It's too long.

Mistake 3: Formatting. Unless you're applying for a job such as a designer or artist, your focus should be on making your resume clean and legible. At least ten point font. At least half-inch margins. White paper, black ink. Consistent spacing between lines, columns aligned, your name and contact information on every page. 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. Formatting can get garbled when moving across platforms. Saving it as a PDF is a good way to go.

Mistake 4: Confidential information. I once received a resume from an applicant working at a top-three consulting firm. This firm had a strict confidentiality policy: client names were never to be shared. On the resume, the candidate wrote: "Consulted to a major software company in Redmond, Washington." Rejected! There's an inherent conflict between your employer's needs (keep business secrets confidential) and your needs (show how awesome I am so I can get a better job). So candidates often find ways to honor the letter of their confidentiality agreements but not the spirit. It's a mistake. While this candidate didn't mention Microsoft specifically, any reviewer knew that's what he meant. In a very rough audit, we found that at least 5-10% of resumes reveal confidential information. Which tells me, as an employer, that I should never hire those candidates ... unless I want my own trade secrets emailed to my competitors.  The New York Times test is helpful here: 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. This breaks my heart. Putting a lie on your resume is never, ever, ever, worth it. Everyone, up to and including CEOs, gets fired for this. (Google "CEO fired for lying on resume" and see.) 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, but never have I seen one accidentally rounded down -- never), 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 favor.

There are three big problems with lying: (1) You can easily get busted. The Internet, reference checks, and people who worked at your company in the past can all reveal your fraud. (2) Lies follow you forever. Fib on your resume and 15 years later get a big promotion and are discovered? Fired. And try explaining that in your next interview. (3) Our Moms taught us better. Seriously. "

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Career Fair Employers

The annual Career Fair is now just one week away!  We have had our biggest response from employers in many years.  Our facility can only hold 125 and we have had dozens on a waiting list. Those employers we cannot accommodate for this fair will be invited to campus at a later date.

Career Fair
Wednesday, April 6, 2016
10:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Building 920 in the College Center
(April 1, 2016)

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Career Fair not far away!

Our annual career fair is Wednesday, April 6th from 10:00 - 1:00.  Our response from employers wanting to participate has been unbelievable.  We reached our maximum of 125 over a week ago, which is unprecedented.

Be sure to plan ahead and make time to attend this excellent event. This is your chance to meet with local employers in a wide range of industries. Get your resume in order, dress like you want the job, and think about how you want to present yourself. This is a great chance to make a good first impression.

More detailed information will come out over the next few weeks.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Fall Semester 2015 Begins!

Welcome to the Fall Semester!  Next week begins a new academic year and with it, new opportunities.  Whether you are a new student or returning, you should be looking for ways to build your resume.  A full resume makes it easier to get interviews once you begin looking for employment.

Suggestions to help

  • Get involved in student organizations
  • Volunteer - many agencies in the community need help from volunteers and the work you do can be listed on your resume
  • Work-study:  talk with someone in Student Employment about getting a position in this financial aid program.  Find more information here.
  • Of course you can always get a part-time position with a local employer if your schedule allows.  Use Career Connection to assist your search and the many links on our resource page.
Contact our office if you need assistance with anything job related (843-574-6302) or email  We will be happy to assist you.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Start your job search here

As of this morning, we have 195 job postings on the Career Connection site!  If you are looking for work (part-time, full-time or seasonal) there is probably a position for you! Stay active with your account and make sure you have a good resume to send to employers. 

Tips to help

Create a Search Agent - go to the 'Job Search' tab and use the advanced search option, then follow the directions at the top of the page to create the agent. This feature can be setup to run your saved search and email you the results on a regular basis so you do not have to remember to check in. 

Login regularly - we post news of employer visits and other hiring events in the local area that might be of interest to you.  You may also want to conduct a job search even if you have a Search Agent. Employers sometimes list jobs in categories you may not have thought of and didn't come up in your agent search.

Have multiple resumes - if you are looking for work in multiple industries, you should have a resume tailored to each area.  One generic resume is not effective.  Contact our office if you need assistance.


Thursday, May 14, 2015

Summer Semester is here!

Many students will take the summer off and some will continue with classes.  Which ever category you fall into, don't forget to take advantage of the Career Connection system to find work!  Summer usually means a higher demand for many industries.  We currently have over 250 positions posted.  If you need help finding employment, use this valuable tool.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Graduation is here!

If you are about to graduate, don't forget about getting your resume in order!  You will need this important tool as you begin to look for employment.  Student Employment Services is here to help you whether you need to create one from scratch or if you just want another opinion on your current resume.  Call or email our office for an appointment. 843.574.6302 or

Friday, April 10, 2015

Career Fair Recap

Wednesday's career fair was a great event!  Over 120 employers participated and we had a steady crowd of attendees from 10:00 until 1:00.  Initial reactions:

  • Employers were very pleased overall with candidates they spoke with. Many were scheduling follow up interviews and screening.
  • Several students told me they had interviews lined up with multiple companies.
  • For those of you that attended, you did a great job of dressing appropriately and bringing copies of your resume. It makes a great impression on employers!

Scenes from the day

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Career Fair 2015

Spring Career Fair
Wednesday, April 8th
10:00 - 1:00
Building 920 Conference Center
Main Campus

Be sure to make time in your schedule to attend the annual career fair!  With over 120 employers registered, you are sure to make valuable connections in your job search.  This is a great event to locate openings, research companies and gain insight into the skills employers are looking for in new hires.

Come prepared:
  • Dress to make a good impression!  If you have a LinkedIn account, Verizon Wireless is sponsoring a free photo booth to have a professional head shot to upload to your account profile.
  • Bring resumes.  Not all companies will accept them on site, but those that do will appreciate your preparedness
  • Do not discount an employer by their name. All companies need information technology, accountants, human resources, administrators, etc.
  • Not all companies may be currently hiring, but be sure to ask about upcoming needs and what they look for in top candidates. You will be prepared when they do hire!
  • Do not bring children or other family members.  This tells an employer that you may not have stable child care or reliable transportation.
A list or currently registered employers may be found on our Career Fair web page.

Friday, February 27, 2015

Employer Visits in March

Verizon Wireless Interview Workshop

  • Wednesday, March 18th
  • 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
  • Building 410 rooms 212-214
  • Topics:
    • Interview techniques
    • Selling yourself
    • Proper conduct during an interview

South Carolina Federal Credit Union

  • Thursday, March 19th
  • 11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
  • Building 410 rooms 212-214
  • Topics: 
    • Deciding what to apply for
    • Job boards/how to find open positions
    • Composition of a job ad
    • Meeting the requirements of a job ad
    • Resume writing
    • Interview tips
    • Traditional vs. behavioral interviews
    • Interview attire
    • Interview follow-up
    • Best practices of top candidates

Please contact the Student Employment office if you would like to RSVP for either event.  843-574-6302 or  You may also RSVP using your Career Connection account and going to the "Events" page.