Author Topic: EET grad looking for work in North America  (Read 14951 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline ratdude747

  • Regular Contributor
  • *
  • Posts: 95
  • Country: us
Re: EET grad looking for work in North America
« Reply #25 on: February 16, 2016, 04:33:19 pm »
I forgot to mention, there was a major resume overhaul recently. I've attached a copy.

I've always heard (and I mean from everybody I've spoken to about resumes over the past five years) to always keep the resume no longer than one page. If the employer wants more, they'll ask for a Vita (CV) instead, which details every single job you've ever worked; they're usually used for academic positions more than anything. While I've seen CV's listed as an option with some people, I've never seen it as the only choice of the two. For non-academic roles, I've been under the impression that hearing my whole life story would be :blah:  :=\ and thus a true CV (as described in the last post) wouldn't be appropriate.

« Last Edit: February 16, 2016, 04:41:39 pm by ratdude747 »
 

Online IanB

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 9639
  • Country: us
Re: EET grad looking for work in North America
« Reply #26 on: February 16, 2016, 06:04:31 pm »
When anyone from Europe says "CV" they mean what an American calls a resume. It's just one of the many differences in how words are used across the Atlantic.

However, it can be very difficult to cram everything important onto one page. You should certainly go to two pages (even three) if it means you can include more relevant content. I know I cannot squeeze my resume into one page and still tell the story I want to tell. The one page guideline is just that, a guideline, and an idealistic one at that. Don't treat it as a hard and fast rule.
« Last Edit: February 16, 2016, 06:07:22 pm by IanB »
I'm not an EE--what am I doing here?
 

Offline ratdude747

  • Regular Contributor
  • *
  • Posts: 95
  • Country: us
Re: EET grad looking for work in North America
« Reply #27 on: February 16, 2016, 06:08:57 pm »
I'll disagree, as the attention span of HR folks isn't all that long, especially with a tall tower of papers. I trim things to fit a page, and anything further that is relevant goes in the cover letter. That said, the new resume eliminated some redundant information and made room for additional information.
 

Online IanB

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 9639
  • Country: us
Re: EET grad looking for work in North America
« Reply #28 on: February 16, 2016, 06:16:51 pm »
I'll disagree, as the attention span of HR folks isn't all that long, especially with a tall tower of papers. I trim things to fit a page, and anything further that is relevant goes in the cover letter. That said, the new resume eliminated some redundant information and made room for additional information.

You are posting here about your troubles finding work. So I will suggest that disagreeing with advice offered to you might not be the wisest course of action.

As to who reads and acts on resumes, it is not HR. HR folks will pass on resumes to hiring managers who have an open position they wish to fill. The hiring manager will ask, "Is this a person I might want on my team?" Your resume is your chance to advertise yourself to that manager and convince them to call you for interview. If your resume is too brief, you will fail to communicate what you have to offer.
« Last Edit: February 16, 2016, 06:34:43 pm by IanB »
I'm not an EE--what am I doing here?
 

Offline ratdude747

  • Regular Contributor
  • *
  • Posts: 95
  • Country: us
Re: EET grad looking for work in North America
« Reply #29 on: February 16, 2016, 06:40:32 pm »
Yeah but I have other places I get advice from besides here. Yes, I do have a life outside of here, and outside of the internet for that matter! If I get advice that makes sense and more or less follows the trend of what I've heard before, has a rational basis, and is feasible on my end, then I'll be more willing to adopt it. However, any of those aren't the case, I tend to question the advice more. In this case, from high school through SEVERAL college classes, limiting resumes to a page was the most constant thing I heard. I also know my personal tendencies (some due to Aspergers) and know that without a limit I'd write verbose mess that wouldn't even get me hired at McDonalds. That's why I respectfully disagree.

I know about hiring managers and all that... I tend to lump them in my term "HR folks",  to distinguish them from people who actually work in the department and know the subject matter, such as project managers. The issue is that on paper, no matter how long the paper, I'm not that great. I have an average GPA (3.4/4.0, half my classmates were in the 3.6 range) and no true internship, which despite the practical uselessness (most interns are coffee boys and pack mules I hear), is overvalued by such folks. It's too late to change that (as I know that such would have made me worse off in practice). I know that in practice I'm good. I know my stuff and I'll work my ass off to get the job done the best I can. But no resume can convey that as it's a piece of paper and nothing more. I can claim how good my work ethic is, but no piece of paper will convey that. That's why it seems my only hope is to know somebody who can give a good word, and I have, and they still weren't interested. I'm just having the worst luck it seems.

This is also why I've come to avoid any employer who uses Taleo or the like, as I know I'm never going to get a fair fight with those. They use BS reasons for filters most of the time, and most of the common filters (no EET, must have internship/co-op experience, etc) rule me out. I'm not a number or a .pdf, I'm a living human. Please treat me as such.

I know, I'm probably ranting too much :rant: . That said, you are hearing my 100% true thoughts, minus vulgarities and the like. It's really frustrating, having been praised all through college for working hard and exceeding expectations, only to graduate and find that it's BS, not talent that apparently counts. I'm no cookie-cutter graduate, and apparently that's a problem.
 

Online tggzzz

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 10988
  • Country: gb
    • Having fun doing more, with less
Re: EET grad looking for work in North America
« Reply #30 on: February 16, 2016, 06:45:58 pm »
I'll disagree, as the attention span of HR folks isn't all that long, especially with a tall tower of papers. I trim things to fit a page, and anything further that is relevant goes in the cover letter. That said, the new resume eliminated some redundant information and made room for additional information.

You are posting here about your troubles finding work. So I will suggest that disagreeing with advice offered to you might not be the wisest course of action.

As to who reads and acts on resumes, it is not HR. HR folks will pass on resumes to hiring managers who have an open position they wish to fill. The hiring manager will ask, "Is this a person I might want on my team?" Your resume is your chance to advertise yourself to that manager and convince them to call you for interview. If your resume is too brief, you will fail to communicate what you have to offer.

Yes.

The only quibble is that in many organisations HR-droids filter the CVs before managers see them. If not filtered, managers are inundated with rubbish. If filtered, then potentially good candidates are discarded. Good communication needs to be established and reestablished.

To the OP: the purpose of the first page is to avoid the CV being filtered out before the second and third and fourth pages have been read by those competent to make a decision.
The purpose of the second/third/fourth pages is to tantalise the competent authority into giving you an interview.
Tell them enough that they want to find out more.
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's aphorism: "there is no substitute for span". Retort: "There is a substitute: skill+imagination. But you can buy span".
Having fun doing more, with less
 

Online tggzzz

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 10988
  • Country: gb
    • Having fun doing more, with less
Re: EET grad looking for work in North America
« Reply #31 on: February 16, 2016, 06:54:16 pm »
Yes, I do have a life outside of here, and outside of the internet for that matter!

What soft-skills and achievements would be relevant to employment. HR-droids love demonstrable teamwork, since it gets around the motherhood-and-apple-pie "works well in a team and on their own" pablum.

Quote
If I get advice that makes sense and more or less follows the trend of what I've heard before, has a rational basis, and is feasible on my end, then I'll be more willing to adopt it. However, any of those aren't the case, I tend to question the advice more. In this case, from high school through SEVERAL college classes, limiting resumes to a page was the most constant thing I heard.
... and for whatever reason it hasn't worked, so try something different.

Useful trick for avoiding verbosity. For every thing you write, ask "So what? So why does that make me attractive". If there's no clear answer, then consider cutting it.

That also cuts through a lot of vacant salestalk and marketing festures (sic), especially unquantified adjectives.
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's aphorism: "there is no substitute for span". Retort: "There is a substitute: skill+imagination. But you can buy span".
Having fun doing more, with less
 

Online IanB

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 9639
  • Country: us
Re: EET grad looking for work in North America
« Reply #32 on: February 16, 2016, 06:55:47 pm »
I know about hiring managers and all that... I tend to lump them in my term "HR folks",  to distinguish them from people who actually work in the department and know the subject matter, such as project managers.

No, the hiring manager is the person who runs the department and who (with his colleagues) knows the subject matter, and who will actually decide to hire you.

I can assure you that when I read a resume I read all three or four pages and all the way through I am asking myself, "is this person a good fit for the position we need to fill?"
I'm not an EE--what am I doing here?
 

Online tggzzz

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 10988
  • Country: gb
    • Having fun doing more, with less
Re: EET grad looking for work in North America
« Reply #33 on: February 16, 2016, 07:43:01 pm »
I know about hiring managers and all that... I tend to lump them in my term "HR folks",  to distinguish them from people who actually work in the department and know the subject matter, such as project managers.

No, the hiring manager is the person who runs the department and who (with his colleagues) knows the subject matter, and who will actually decide to hire you.

I can assure you that when I read a resume I read all three or four pages and all the way through I am asking myself, "is this person a good fit for the position we need to fill?"

Just so. One page CVs are uninformative and boring, don't distinguish one candidate from another, and give me no idea of whether a person is interesting. Give enough information for the manager to think he might enjoy chatting with you.

Summary: HR-droids can say "no" (explicitly or by filtering), whereas managers can say "yes" or "no".
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's aphorism: "there is no substitute for span". Retort: "There is a substitute: skill+imagination. But you can buy span".
Having fun doing more, with less
 

Offline ratdude747

  • Regular Contributor
  • *
  • Posts: 95
  • Country: us
Re: EET grad looking for work in North America
« Reply #34 on: February 16, 2016, 08:12:01 pm »
All I am going to say is that when trying something new, there are some things worth trying, and some things that are not worth trying. Fluffing my resume with filler isn't something that seems to be a good move. Did either of you read my attached version a few posts ago? That version is a collaborative effort with a former professor; I didn't just randomly redo things. I feel that every point worth generally mentioning is in there; what didn't make the cut is too specific to be listed in the resume (and would be in my cover letter/application email instead). Resumes are bullet points; there is a reason why cover letters exist as a separate, yet related thing.

My point about hiring managers (once again, nothing personal) is that often it seems they value things that are not in my favor, mainly internship experience as it is often assumed that college is a bunch of non-practical bookwork; while that's not true in my case, unless they're familiar with my college's program (and most of the ones that did select me for interview had employees with my degree), I'm assumed to not be qualified due to a lack of real-world knowhow. I'm not going to comment on the merits of such, but knowing that, I have to wonder if my goose is cooked. Nobody wants me, I'm too unique to be employable it seems.

Having re-read the thread, I think there is a bit of a misunderstanding. Everybody has said to explain this and that, and I do, but not in the resume. As mentioned before, I mention that in application emails and/or cover letters.

(I will also note that today is not going well for other reasons, so if I you think I sound depressed, you're probably right).
« Last Edit: February 16, 2016, 08:18:16 pm by ratdude747 »
 

Offline Brumby

  • Supporter
  • ****
  • Posts: 9821
  • Country: au
Re: EET grad looking for work in North America
« Reply #35 on: February 17, 2016, 03:09:12 pm »
I know about hiring managers and all that... I tend to lump them in my term "HR folks",  to distinguish them from people who actually work in the department and know the subject matter, such as project managers.

No, the hiring manager is the person who runs the department and who (with his colleagues) knows the subject matter, and who will actually decide to hire you.

I can assure you that when I read a resume I read all three or four pages and all the way through I am asking myself, "is this person a good fit for the position we need to fill?"

Same here.  The HR department just received applications, collated them and forwarded them to my department.  They didn't cull anything.

But we sure did.
 

Online tggzzz

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 10988
  • Country: gb
    • Having fun doing more, with less
Re: EET grad looking for work in North America
« Reply #36 on: February 17, 2016, 07:34:18 pm »
The HR department just received applications, collated them and forwarded them to my department.  They didn't cull anything.

But we sure did.

And that's the way it should be. But I've seen places where HR had to be, um, re-educated.

Nonetheless, there are some good reasons why HR should be able to reject candidates.
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's aphorism: "there is no substitute for span". Retort: "There is a substitute: skill+imagination. But you can buy span".
Having fun doing more, with less
 

Offline ratdude747

  • Regular Contributor
  • *
  • Posts: 95
  • Country: us
Re: EET grad looking for work in North America
« Reply #37 on: February 18, 2016, 12:33:17 am »
The HR department just received applications, collated them and forwarded them to my department.  They didn't cull anything.

But we sure did.

And that's the way it should be. But I've seen places where HR had to be, um, re-educated.

Nonetheless, there are some good reasons why HR should be able to reject candidates.

Yeah. My beef was that a lot of places (the bigger companies especially) filter candidates for easy to implement yet stupid reasons that work against me.

Some genera thoughts that come to mind after re-reading the thread (yet again):

As a married graduate it honestly feels juvenile for me to play coffee boy as an intern just to make some robo-filter a little bit happy. I'm sure such positions exist, but I do not feel it is worth the opportunity cost.

I'm sure I've pissed a few people (to include Dave himself?) and potential employers off by starting and posting in this thread, and fine, be pissed off. If you are one to judge all of me based on some forum post, I probably wouldn't be the goody-goody ass kissing two-shoes that you want. I have knowledge and skill, and I respect my superiors, but I'm not a chess pawn.

If you expect resumes to be essays, well, if you look at pretty much every writing guide out there, the one-page-rule is in most of them. Sure, everybody's tastes are different but unless I have a damned-good reason to make a radical change, I tend to be conservative and aim to please the majority of people considering me for employment. Also, I took technical writing class twice. Both professors (and the textbook) agree that two of the biggest objectives of technical writing are brevity and clarity; my resume is intended to follow both, which means no fluff or filler. It says what needs said, in a clear and concise matter.
 

Online tggzzz

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 10988
  • Country: gb
    • Having fun doing more, with less
Re: EET grad looking for work in North America
« Reply #38 on: February 18, 2016, 10:14:15 am »
As a married graduate it honestly feels juvenile for me to play coffee boy as an intern just to make some robo-filter a little bit happy. I'm sure such positions exist, but I do not feel it is worth the opportunity cost.

That's your choice either way. Decide whether the advantages are worth tthe disadvantages, and plan accordingly.

Quote
I'm sure I've pissed a few people (to include Dave himself?) and potential employers off by starting and posting in this thread, and fine, be pissed off. If you are one to judge all of me based on some forum post, I probably wouldn't be the goody-goody ass kissing two-shoes that you want. I have knowledge and skill, and I respect my superiors, but I'm not a chess pawn.

Not everywhere is like the Dilbert cartoons - but many are. Deal with it.

Quote
If you expect resumes to be essays, well, if you look at pretty much every writing guide out there, the one-page-rule is in most of them. Sure, everybody's tastes are different but unless I have a damned-good reason to make a radical change, I tend to be conservative and aim to please the majority of people considering me for employment. Also, I took technical writing class twice. Both professors (and the textbook) agree that two of the biggest objectives of technical writing are brevity and clarity; my resume is intended to follow both, which means no fluff or filler. It says what needs said, in a clear and concise matter.

Nobody needs an essay; bullet points are sufficient.

You should be as brief as possible but no briefer. If you don't give sufficient information to distinguish yourself from the other candidates, then you won't stand out from the crowd. If you don't stand out then you are more likely to be treated as a fungible resource. Your choice.

Writing guides say you shouldn't split infinitives and you shouldn't end sentences with a preposition. And don't get me started on the idiocy of MSWord's grammar checker.
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's aphorism: "there is no substitute for span". Retort: "There is a substitute: skill+imagination. But you can buy span".
Having fun doing more, with less
 

Offline ratdude747

  • Regular Contributor
  • *
  • Posts: 95
  • Country: us
Re: EET grad looking for work in North America
« Reply #39 on: February 18, 2016, 04:34:57 pm »
Nobody needs an essay; bullet points are sufficient.

You should be as brief as possible but no briefer. If you don't give sufficient information to distinguish yourself from the other candidates, then you won't stand out from the crowd. If you don't stand out then you are more likely to be treated as a fungible resource. Your choice.

Writing guides say you shouldn't split infinitives and you shouldn't end sentences with a preposition. And don't get me started on the idiocy of MSWord's grammar checker.

Was that in general or specific to my resume?
 

Online IanB

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 9639
  • Country: us
Re: EET grad looking for work in North America
« Reply #40 on: February 18, 2016, 05:36:46 pm »
Hi Lawrence, I downloaded your resume and had a look at it. I would have say that it seems quite anonymous, it could be the resume of anyone who has been through a similar education. It doesn't say anything much about you as a person, about your passions, your objectives, what you want from a job or a career.

As it stands, I think your resume doesn't stand out and it is easily going to get put in the discard pile. Engineers are not hired as fungible resources out of the crowd, they are hired as uniquely special and capable people who fit a particular job requirement (should be, in my experience, YMMV).

All the bullet items there are good, but they are the supporting information, the place I will look to find back up for your personal statements. I would extend your resume to two pages, and at the top I would put a personal statement about you (who you are, what drives you, what your particular skills and abilities are), followed by a career objectives statement (given who you are, what kind of job you are looking for and where you want to go with it). In short, it should begin with your "elevator pitch" to get someone's attention.

Follow this with your listed bullet items. Also, don't just list items as dry facts. Try to bring out of some of them what you yourself did there and what benefits and results you achieved. Like for example, "I was nominated as team lead, and by coordinating the efforts of my team members I helped us achieve the top prize".

You may think some of this is cheesy, but it really is not. Your resume is your personal sales pitch, and you really need to sell yourself. Don't go overboard, but don't be too dry. Dry means boring means reject.

One of the worst mistakes when starting out in a career is to think that everything in the business world has to be really stiff and formal. It's not true. Everyone is human, and a little humanity, and a lot of the soft social skills, go a long way.
« Last Edit: February 18, 2016, 07:19:54 pm by IanB »
I'm not an EE--what am I doing here?
 

Online tggzzz

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 10988
  • Country: gb
    • Having fun doing more, with less
Re: EET grad looking for work in North America
« Reply #41 on: February 18, 2016, 07:07:57 pm »
Nobody needs an essay; bullet points are sufficient.

You should be as brief as possible but no briefer. If you don't give sufficient information to distinguish yourself from the other candidates, then you won't stand out from the crowd. If you don't stand out then you are more likely to be treated as a fungible resource. Your choice.

Writing guides say you shouldn't split infinitives and you shouldn't end sentences with a preposition. And don't get me started on the idiocy of MSWord's grammar checker.

Was that in general or specific to my resume?

Yes to both.

Other people have made similar points (e.g. IanB). It is your choice whether you listen to HR-droids and arts graduates or to engineers and managers with experience of interviewing and hiring.
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's aphorism: "there is no substitute for span". Retort: "There is a substitute: skill+imagination. But you can buy span".
Having fun doing more, with less
 

Offline Brumby

  • Supporter
  • ****
  • Posts: 9821
  • Country: au
Re: EET grad looking for work in North America
« Reply #42 on: February 19, 2016, 04:22:01 am »
Here's a question to help you work out a few things - but for it to be of any benefit, you have to really be honest about the role....

Assume you are the manager who is doing the hiring.  Would you hire YOU?

 

Online tggzzz

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 10988
  • Country: gb
    • Having fun doing more, with less
Re: EET grad looking for work in North America
« Reply #43 on: February 19, 2016, 09:11:48 am »
Here's a question to help you work out a few things - but for it to be of any benefit, you have to really be honest about the role....

Assume you are the manager who is doing the hiring.  Would you hire YOU?

That's a difficult question for anybody to answer accurately, and it might be even more difficult for the OP who has mentioned having Aspbergers. Quite apart from the issue of "accurate" self-evaluation, there is the unavoidable problem of a manager's opinions, which can be justifiable or unjustifyable, relevant or irrelevant. Besides, when looking for jobs I've always regarded it as an opportunity to find out what the manager is like, and for me to reject a job because I don't trust the manager!

Hence I don't think that is a profitable question.

OTOH, it is reasonable and beneficial to try to understand how someone might read and judge the words on paper.

Whether you and an arbitrary manager "get on well together" at an interview is out of your control and therefore not worth worrying about in advance. But words on paper are within your control and should be optimised, whatever that means.
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's aphorism: "there is no substitute for span". Retort: "There is a substitute: skill+imagination. But you can buy span".
Having fun doing more, with less
 

Offline Brumby

  • Supporter
  • ****
  • Posts: 9821
  • Country: au
Re: EET grad looking for work in North America
« Reply #44 on: February 19, 2016, 01:47:52 pm »
The idea is to offer a different perspective in assessing the value of one's approach.  It would allow a person to apply some critical thinking that will, hopefully, help identify good and bad points.

Expecting someone to attain full and complete objectivity in such an exercise is beyond the abilities of we mere mortals, but this does not invalidate the concept.

However, this comment covers my main point...
OTOH, it is reasonable and beneficial to try to understand how someone might read and judge the words on paper.
 

Offline ratdude747

  • Regular Contributor
  • *
  • Posts: 95
  • Country: us
Re: EET grad looking for work in North America
« Reply #45 on: March 26, 2016, 04:54:34 am »
Good news!

I received (and will accept) a job offer with Arvin Sango in Madison, IN, USA. They make exhaust components (manifolds, cats, mufflers, and complete assemblies) and metal stampings for Toyota, Nissan, and others. I won't post details of the offer in this public forum (confidential!) but I will say that it was a very nice offer that based on what I've seen and heard from fellow engineers and the like. The position involves engineering of their production lines (PLCs and the like, some mechanical stuff too).

I honestly didn't think my interviews went all the well but apparently that wasn't the case. What a relief.

I've attached the final form of my resume that got me the job. It's more or less the same as before, only with hyperlinks. As for the comments on character details, the last line (other skills) sealed the deal with them I think, as my background as a DIY mechanic (among other things) resonated and was a conversation point. To be fair, I did meet them at a job fair, so it wasn't a blind reading of my resume. Not that it matters as that's a moot point.

Yay for me?
 

Online tggzzz

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 10988
  • Country: gb
    • Having fun doing more, with less
Re: EET grad looking for work in North America
« Reply #46 on: March 26, 2016, 07:51:11 am »
I received (and will accept) a job offer with Arvin Sango in Madison, IN, USA.

Congratulations and good luck.
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's aphorism: "there is no substitute for span". Retort: "There is a substitute: skill+imagination. But you can buy span".
Having fun doing more, with less
 


Share me

Digg  Facebook  SlashDot  Delicious  Technorati  Twitter  Google  Yahoo
Smf