Lately, I had the chance to go over 100+ resume of people applying for an end-of-studies internship as I did myself a year ago. I also assisted to some of the interviews and saw what I looked like a year ago.
In this article, I will share with you my perspective from the 'other side of the table' and few tips on how you can increase your chances to get an internship. We will be focusing on the first step of the process, which is the application.
Not all of us are designer or typography experts. But when you send a resume it must be readable. There are plenty of ready-to use templates out there. Do not use any crazy fonts, just pick a template and use it. Be careful with the colors, you might end up making it about taste.
If you feel that you cant squeeze everything in one page. Do not be afraid of having more pages on your resume. Or link to your personal website. The goal is to keep your resume clear and simple.
Read the offer
Repeat after me: Read the offer.
When you make a general purpose email, a general purpose resume and a general purpose cover letter, your application goes unnoticed. It shows that you didn't invest any time or energy working on your application. And it's very likely you are sending 50+ applications a day. ( Trust me. I know. ) I even read emails from people who forgot to change the name of the company. Copy pasting is not appreciated.
Each job ad you respond to, is targeting a specific profile. Make sure that in your application, you showcase why you are a good fit for that specific offer and highlight the skills | projects that qualify you to be so.
Highlight your soft-skills
A small section at the end where you write "soccer, swimming, traveling.." is not enough.
I don't know why reading resumes feels more like shopping for a laptop. People tend to highlight their technical skills, tools they used or projects they did. But it's very rare to find someone showcasing their extracurricular stuff or things that feature their ability to work in a team. If you have any achievements that are unrelated to work, but still highlight your soft skills, write them on your resume.
Not only your resume
Many applicants send only their resume with two lines indicating that they are looking for an opportunity. That's not enough. Remember that attaching a cover letter, certifications or recommendation letters from your teachers or previous experiences can boost your chances to get an interview and stand out from the crowd.
I recommend you link to a personal website where you can put all your achievements in details.
If you don't feel comfortable with something, don't put it on your resume.
Be comfortable with what you know and what you don't know. Otherwise you might mislead the interviewer into thinking that you are fit for the position and it might lead to awkward moments during the interview. Get rid of everything you don't master on your resume. Focus on the things you did well. This way you are also making it easier for you to prepare for the interview.
Think of your application as your face on Tinder. Would you put someone else's face in your profile? No. It's all about finding the right match. They are looking for their match and you are looking for yours. Don't be discouraged. Be patient and keep getting better.
I hope this article helped you increase your applications' conversion rate. Please do not hesitate to read more articles in the blog and share value with your friends. Thank you for your time.