I critique a lot of resumes for high level executives, and they are all sent to me by email. I don’t even print them out anymore, or I’d be killing a lot of trees! But I have to comment on how they are labeled and what you can do to make sure that your resume does not get lost among the other 300 trying for the same position.

First, and foremost, label it with your full name! More than 90% of the resumes that come to me are labeled like this:

resume.doc, or resume3-1-07.doc, or briansresume.doc.

Think about the folks receiving them. If they are all labeled this way, how will they find yours? Here’s a better way to help out the recruiter:

John Smith-Marketing Director.doc.

They’ll already know it’s your resume, so you don’t need to label it as such, although I know it helps you find it on your own computer. Therefore, keep it in a folder that’s titled “resumes.” In fact, while you’re reading this, why not go check how you titled that crucial document, so you don’t forget.

Also in the email subject line you can write something like: John Smith/Director Of Marketing Candidate Job Posting #0015B. Of course if the company is specifically stating what to put in the subject line, then do that!

Finally if the company has a job posting number, that’s another way you can help out the HR department. Put the posting number at the top of the resume, or you can label it in the title:

John Smith-Marketing Director 01753

This will also help you keep track of what resume you sent to each vacancy announcement.

As for the Cover Letter, I label it this way:

John Smith – Marketing Director CL

You’ll find that clearly labeling your documents will send a message to the recruiter that you are organized and helpful to others. And that alone will help you stand out among the pack in your job search.

Happy job hunting!

Susan Geary, Certified Resume Writer