Job Interview & Résumé Resources

Before the interview

  • Be familiar with the company.
  • Update your résumé, if needed.
  • Be specific about a particular job(s).
  • Organize the answers to important questions relevant to you.
  • Practice interview with a family member or friend.
  • Arrive early for the interview.
  • Don’t bring your cell phone to the interview.

Personal appearance

  • Be tidy and well groomed.
  • Do not chew gum.
  • Dress for the job you want.

During the interview

  • Print out your résumé and bring multiple copies to the interview.
  • Greet the employer with a handshake and learn their name.
  • Smile, be polite, and have good manners.
  • Stay relaxed and listen carefully to the questions asked.
  • Answer every question accurately.
  • Make frequent eye contact.
  • Use proper English when speaking. Avoid slang.
  • Show an interest in the job. Ask questions.
  • Be enthusiastic and supportive.

Cover Letter Checklist and Examples

Cover Letter Examples

  • Is the personal-business style letter format used?
  • Is the letter addressed to a specific person with a courtesy title?
  • Is the company name in the inside address?
  • For a solicited cover letter, is the first paragraph clear that you are applying for a job, referring to the job in the same terms as the company?
  • For a solicited cover letter, did you state how you heard about the position?
  • For a prospecting cover letter, is the first paragraph an attention-getting paragraph?
  • Does the first paragraph for a solicited cover letter (second paragraph for a prospecting cover letter) briefly introduce your major qualifications?
  • Did you state the specific position for which you are applying?
  • Are qualifications discussed in the letter in the order they were introduced in the first paragraph?
  • When giving details, did you cite specific accomplishments?
  • Are details tailored to the needs of the specific company and the job that you are seeking?
  • Does the letter smoothly refer to the enclosed résumé, and is an enclosure notation used?
  • Is an interview specifically requested in the last paragraph?
  • Does the last paragraph make the action of responding to you easy by including a telephone number and times you can be reached?
  • Does the cover letter end with a positive, forward-looking statement?
  • Is the letter signed?
  • Does the letter indicate familiarity with the organization and the position?
  • Is the letter presented in terms of reader benefit?
  • Is a positive approach used throughout?
  • Is the letter written in your own words?
  • Are first-person pronouns used naturally but not to excess?
  • Have you avoided starting paragraphs with I, me, or my?
  • Is the letter perfect in spelling, word usage, and other areas of grammatical correctness?
  • Does the word résumé have accent marks over the e’s?
  • Are the sentences concise; for example, eliminating very, good, it is, there are, this is, and in order?
  • Do paragraphs flow smoothly without being choppy?
  • Are paragraphs unified, each covering only one topic?
  • Are all the paragraphs fewer than nine lines?
  • If the letter goes to two pages, does the header at the top, left-hand side of the second page list the name of the person the letter is going to, the page number, and the date?

Résumé Checklist and Examples

Résumé Examples

Paper Résumé Checklist

  • Are required sections present (header, education, and experience)?
  • Does the heading include your full name, address, and complete telephone number?
  • Does the résumé contain an appropriately worded career objective (if used)?
  • Are both education and experience sections presented in reverse chronological order?
  • Did you give the degree earned, the year it will be earned, the name of the college, the city, and the state for all colleges attended?
  • Did you state the correct degree earned (for example, BS [or B.S.] in Business with a Management concentration)?
  • Is the GPA listed if it is at least 3.0/4.0?
  • Did you list the position or job title, organization name, city, state, and work dates for each of the jobs you have held since high school?
  • Did you list a company only once (grouping work dates together), even if you returned to work for that company several times at several jobs?
  • Are enough positive details given about both education and experience to present you positively?
  • When giving details, did you cite specific accomplishments?
  • Are details tailored to the needs of the specific company and the job for which you are applying?
  • Did you use action verbs when giving details?
  • Did you focus on achievements in the last three to five years?
  • Is the information completely factual and truthful?
  • Are items in lists parallel?
  • Did you place items on the page or in lists, remembering that the beginning and end are points of emphasis?
  • Is more space given to the central selling point (education, experience, or skills) than to less important factors?
  • Did you include at least two long or three short items under each heading (not required for the education and experience headings)?
  • Is the overall appearance of the résumé sharp and attractive?
  • Is the résumé at least one full page long?
  • If the résumé goes to two pages, do you have at least ten lines of information on that page?
  • Is the résumé perfect in spelling, word usage, and other areas of grammatical correctness?
  • Can your most important qualifications be seen in 30 seconds or fewer?
  • Did you omit any personal information such as age, height, weight, marital status, or hobbies?
  • Are unusual items such as collegians and Christian service stated in terms anyone will understand?
  • Does the wording contain no first- or second-person pronouns?
  • Did you leave any mention of salary off of your résumé?
  • Did you avoid the statement “References available upon request”?

Electronic Résumé Checklist

  • Is a keyword summary placed at the top of the page immediately under the heading?
  • Does the keyword summary contain keywords pertaining to each of the following: the job field or title you are seeking, work experience and job titles held, essential skills including computer skills, industry jargon and buzzwords that apply to you, education and degrees, and personality traits?
  • Are nouns used to describe job skills and qualifications rather than the action verbs used in a traditional résumé?
  • Is a standard typeface and size of type used?
  • Is the right margin unjustified?
  • Are all graphics, boxes, borders, underlining, and italics eliminated?
  • Is all of the text in one column rather than two?