I thought I would touch in a short note about resumes. As many sites that also charge for other free information I have shared in this blog also state as part of their service they will help with resumes as well to ensure it is in a US format which can be different from other International countries.
To be honest, in this global world, where labor is constantly travelling all over the place, differences between resumes (language aside) is becoming more and more homogenized the world over. So the advice I will share to help with your job applications to get your E3 Visa, H1B Visa or J1 Visa may be what you are already doing.
Additionally, the job sites I recommended like Monster.com and LinkedIn.com as well as others like Career Builder and Yahoo Hot Jobs all have extensive sections on this so it hardly a trade secret.
The truth is probably these days, that you have to go beyond your resume format to obtain a job offer and eventually get your E3 or H1B visa by really standing out from the pack. By this I mean it is the presentation, extra efforts, interview performance which is basically whole package you offer during all stages of the application process that will get you that job offer.
However the resume is an important pre-requisite so I will try and outline the major points of the US style resume in my opinion. Of course depending on the profession, some factors may vary but this will be the standard to cover most types of industries I believe.
Just in case you were wondering, my resume was very much in an Australian style and I actually had a sit down session over breakfast with a VP of a media company, who basically tore my whole things to shreds. Then he gave me section by section pointers to change it to a US Style Resume.
I can also confirm my initial response rate from prospective employers improved dramatically following this complete re-work.
General Points to Consider
- Keep the length to 2 pages or less
- Put it in the format of reverse chronological order (i.e. job experience then education then extra information)
- Try and put all your contact details in the header area as not to waste space
- Consider adding a business/personal objective of about 1-2 sentences just prior to work experience. Also if you do add this, try and tailor it to the position to which you are applying
- You can also either in this initial section or in a cover letter state when you are available to work
- In work experience put your most recent experience first by putting company name & location, job title, dates of service, the job description in bullet form (ensure this straight to the point like “managed $10 million marketing budget for clients across all channels”)
- In education state the institution and all relevant qualification achieved as well as year of graduation. If mini description is required to explain qualification then add here as well
- Consider putting the web address of institution if it is foreign to the US so they can research
- In next part you can spend a little bit of space on additional skills, achievements/awards and personal interests however this is definitely not the focus of the resume so should be kept brief
- The second last thing is to put reference check names and their relevant contact details. US companies have a tendency to check these during the job offer stage of the application process but of course that can vary.
- The last party you can put a brief note on your Visa Status, I will paste below exactly what I put there for the E3 visa but of course you can substitute for H1B or any other visa as well.
As an Australian I am eligible for the E3 visa which is specifically for Australian professionals working for US employers. (This visa works similarly to the Canadian TN Visa and requires 1 form to be completed being the Labor Condition Application (LCA –US State Dept. Info)
I hope all this information has been of some help in your quest for an E3, J1 or H1B visa and that soon your plans and hard work applying for jobs in the US will get you many call backs, interviews and hopefully job offers to choose from!