Contributed by Traci Houghton
Since we are on the topic of spring cleaning here at PPBH, and graduation is right around the corner, I thought this would be the perfect time to talk about cleaning up your professional content before you start the job hunt. As HR Manager, I have compiled some of my biggest pet peeves in hopes that they will help all of you job seekers out there get past the first gate:
Get rid of unprofessional photos on your professional profiles – You wouldn’t believe how many inappropriate and unappealing photos people use on their profiles. If you are going to use a photo for your professional networks (Google+, LinkedIn, etc.), use a business appropriate photo. Don’t use one of you and your friends, your dog, or a selfie.
Spell check/grammar check – This is especially important for your resume, cover letter and references. Finding a typo in someone’s correspondence tells me that they don’t check their work and they’re not careful.
Don’t use a template form letter – If you are sending out multiple resumes, chances are you’ll get someone’s name or a company name wrong. We’re all about communication here, so when a cover letter comes in with a competitor’s name in it, I hit delete.
Be creative – Especially when you’re applying for a job at an agency like ours, and even more importantly if you don’t have a ton of experience, you’ll either need to be creative in your cover letter to grab our attention or give us a reason why your past experiences will help you excel at an ad agency.
Clean up your social media sites – If your site is viewable to the public and potential employers, venture out to take a look. You should be wary of what a potential employer might find. Facebook not only tells the viewer about who you are, but a lot can be said about what kind of photos you upload and share. Check out these tips on how to quickly and effectively clean up your social media.
Do your research – If you’re just looking for a job at an ad agency because you think it will be fun, do a little more research about what “discipline” or area of advertising you’d like to be in. Most of the jobs in an ad agency require college degrees or specialized training like mass communications, design, digital development, public relations, journalism, etc. If you don’t know where you’ll fit inside an agency, then it probably won’t be very fun to work there.