Article by Deb Kloeppel, Founder and President of CASY-MSCCN
It may seem like just another piece of paper. But truly: Your resume is the fourth MOST IMPORTANT document in your life. You’ve got to commit to its development throughout your work life and accept that it’s just as meaningful as the others, which are:
• Birth Certificate
• Social Security Card
• Driver’s License
• Life Long Progression of your Resume
• Marriage License
• Death Certificate
Now is an important time to think about this, because resume development is going to change drastically in 2013. It’s also vital to keep your resume in mind when you PCS. Have you moved recently or will you move this year? If so, make sure you take these vital steps.
1) Change your LinkedIn profile so it indicates that you are now in a different location and available to work. Recruiters search for possible candidates on LinkedIn by location. You want to be sure that your profile will be included in that broad search.
2) Identify the leading industries in the new locale. TARGET your job search in every way possible by making a list of corporations, small businesses, and chain stores within a 15-mile radius of your new home. Go to militaryfriendly.com to find military friendly companies.
3) The local Chamber of Commerce can be an excellent place to start job-hunting in a new area. They have the listings for all of the businesses in their area, plus job listings and maps. Visit them online, call them or visit in person once you’re in the area. Their representative’s advice can be invaluable help for your job search. Another bonus: They can give you the tax information for the new area as well as local business statistics.
4) Set up a P.O. Box address in the area you are moving to. Employers are very shy about hiring someone out-of-state due to relocation costs. So place the ARRIVAL city address on your resume even if you’re not yet there full-time. You’ll thank me for this tip! (Another option: If you have relatives in new location, you might ask them if you can use their physical address/phone number on your resume.)
5) Let all of your working friends know you’re moving and on a job search. Send them your updated and verified resume.
6) Join a professional organization and attend its local meetings in your new area.
7) Become a key volunteer for an organization that is reputable and relevant to the job you want to perform one day for pay. Learn NEW skills and hone current skills in the volunteer job. Once you do, update your resume and LinkedIn profile. LinkedIn now has a “Volunteer Experience & Causes” section that you can add to your profile. You definitely want to take advantage of this.
8) Under-employment is not a dirty word at CASY-MSCCN. If you need to put food on the table, undertake a job for pay. Remember this rule of thumb: Employers almost ALWAYS hire working candidates FIRST.
9) Prepare for a surprise interview upon your arrival at your new duty station. Pack a tote bag, prior to leaving your departure city that contains your business suit, under garments, toothbrush, breath mints, manicure set, closed-toe shoes, copies of your resume in a leather-like binder, wrist watch, writing pad and professional looking pen. Trust me … surprise interviews happen 50 percent of the time during a move.
10) Money Matters: Even if your skills are in demand, plan on three months of money stored away to pay essential bills.
11) Obviously, ask for a transfer if you’re currently working in a corporation loaded with offices nationwide.
12) Exit Strategies: Sometimes the best laid plans simply do not work out, which is why keeping your resume updated and verified is key to your emotional balance during the upheaval and constantly changing situations that military life naturally provides. Accept the fact that you will be experiencing a constant state of flux and reorganization while BUILDING your career path.