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Workshops will focus on writing resumes
Sessions next month at Hampton Park Library
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Forsyth County News

The Georgia Department of Labor resume workshops are scheduled for 4 p.m. May 10 and 1 p.m. May 23 at Hampton Park library, 5345 Settingdown Road. Registration is required for both workshops. Those interested can sign up by visiting any Forsyth County public library, calling (770) 781-9840, or going online at, under “Ask a Librarian.”

That old resume need some dusting off and sprucing up?

Professional resume writers from the Georgia Department of Labor will offer help during two upcoming workshops at Hampton Park library.

The first, on May 10, will show participants how to create a value-based resume.

Attendees will learn about proper formatting for their needs, keywords to include, pitfalls to avoid and how to best showcase their skills and qualifications.

During the second workshop, on May 23, participants will have an opportunity to schedule a time slot to have their resume critiqued.

Sam Hall, director of communications with the Georgia Department of Labor, said strong resume writing is critical, especially in today’s economy.

“It’s one of the most popular and most important services we provide,” said Hall, noting the department offers the service year-round at various events such as job fairs and the department’s 53 career centers statewide.

“There are a lot of people in the job market today who have not had to prepare a resume for many years because they’ve been employed. But in that time, the way companies conduct job searches has completely changed and the old rules don’t apply anymore.”

Hall said studies have shown that most supervisors take only about five to 10 seconds to look at the average resume before deciding whether to continue reading or trashing it.

Jan Markcussen, a certified professional resume writer with the department, agreed.

“All the important information needs to be at the top and easy to find,” Markcussen said.

She advised using short phases rather than full sentences, since most supervisors need to read through the resume quickly.

The most common problem she sees with resumes is being too general and vague.

“Most people try to write a very generalized resume, but it’s best to be very specific. You want to write for the position,” she said.

“For each position for which you’re applying, you want to emphasis the skills relating to that particular position and show how you’re qualified for it.”

Markcussen said the old advice of keeping a resume to one page remains true to some extent.

“Keeping it to one page is fine, but two pages is also acceptable now,” she said. “But you never want to go over two pages.”

Markcussen said her best advice for anyone looking for a job is to have someone else read their resume.

“We all know what we’re trying to express, but if someone else reads it and doesn’t understand, we need to make adjustments,” she said.

“Another person can really notice errors that could prevent you from getting an interview.”