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HeadHunters Revealed!
-- Foreword by    Joyce Lain    Kennedy
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Career Staples

Resumes for Recruiters: Find out how to best prepare your resume for a headhunter.
Submitting Your E-mail Resume: Find out how to attach your resume to an e-mail.
Resources: Find out where to locate recruiters and recruiter-supported jobs on the internet.

Resumes for Recruiters

(Excerpted from Appendix A of Headhunters Revealed! Career Secrets™ for Choosing and Using Professional Recruiters)

This section will not attempt to cover the A-Z of resume creation. There are many resume preparation services and books detailing resume design on the market. However, here are some rules for recruiter-preferred resumes. Giving a headhunter what he wants in a resume increases your chances of being helped.

If you're sending a resume to a hiring company on your own, do what you like. If you're sending one to a recruiter, bells and whistles are specifically not needed. What is needed is a straight, simple, chronological resume. Please, nothing fancy! As a matter of fact, if a headhunter sees a resume that includes "creative elements," he immediately starts wondering what the person has to hide. A recruiter is concerned about skills and experience, not your artistic design — it scores no points. Also, because a headhunter needs to locate specific hiring criteria in your background quickly, she will not want to wade through a functional resume, where none of your experience can easily be traced to a job. In the search professional's mind, a functional resume is a red flag that the candidate is trying to cover up something: no marketable work experience, heavy job-hopping, employment gaps, etc. They work well for career changers, highlighting applicable experience that can be parlayed into other positions, but remember that a headhunter can generally only place you in a position similar to your past. So, a chronological resume, focusing specifically on the past, is what a recruiter wants.

Rather than illustrate the dos and don'ts of resume construction through scores of examples, I'll simply list them.

  • Exceed 1-2 pages (unless you are a technical professional with a separate sheet of systems/software used).
  • Cram a 3-page resume into 1 by shrinking margins and fonts — rewrite the resume to shorten.
  • Use a "Functional" resume — too difficult to see what experience goes where.
  • Use a book-fold, brochure-type resume — too long and cumbersome.
  • Express your creative talents by using other-than-standard fonts, multiple columns, graphics, pictures, newspaper-like headlines, etc. — high database resistance and makes one wonder why you have to sell yourself so hard.
  • State an objective — it's generally either so broad as to be useless or so narrow and specific as to cut you out of many opportunities. Communicate what you are looking for in the cover letter and let your experience speak for itself in the resume.
  • Put "References Available Upon Request" at the bottom — everyone knows this.
  • Put salary, employer addresses/phone numbers, or references on the resume — it takes up room and is unnecessary when being represented by a recruiter.
  • Use paragraphs to explain job duties, experience, or accomplishments; rather, use bullet-points, capturing ideas in one short, concise line each.
  • Use Bold, underlines, italics, ALL CAPS, or horizontal lines in the body text — creates database resistance.
  • Use colored html backgrounds behind your e-mailed resume and cover letter — again, it appears that you have to sell yourself too hard. Look, we are recruiters: we're going to look at your resume to see if we can help you. You don't need to lure us.
  • Isolate keywords out into a block — incorporate them into the resume contextually.


  • Make your resume easy and inviting to read, with lots of white space.
  • Use 1-inch margins on sides and at least 1-inch on top and bottom.
  • Use traditional, serif-type fonts (e.g., Times New Roman), not sans serif (e.g., Arial). Studies have shown that the little extra strokes and tails on the letters (compare the above) actually improve readability.
  • Use the same font throughout the resume — don't mix fonts.
  • Use a type size of 11- or 12-point, nothing smaller.
  • Left-justify everything, to make transfer into the database easier.
  • Use a "Chronological" resume — where all relevant experience and accomplishments obtained at each job are easily associated with that job, in descending order from most recent.
  • State months and years of beginning and ending employment dates (in numbers, not words) — a recruiter will need to know anyhow, so you might as well put them in.
  • State all education received, even if a degree was not completed — but don't make it look like you have a degree if you don't.
  • Put all contact information on both the resume and the cover letter, including home, office, voice-mail, cellular, and pager numbers as well as private e-mail address.
  • Fill up the entire page, separating ideas horizontally (not in vertical columns), with as much appropriate experience and as many keywords as possible.
  • Put a short statement describing a company under the name if what they do is not evident.

    5/95-8/00 Monplanto Corporation
                    (a $50B manufacturer of synthetic trees and shrubs)
                    Greenville, WI

    Where do you locate the keywords for your job or industry? Well, after reading this book, think like a headhunter — what words would one use to search a database for someone like you? A few ways to train yourself:
    1. Look up classified job openings in the newspaper or online and see what employers in your field are asking for. Focus on the "want" of the want-ads.
    2. After you've isolated those keywords that relate to your background, experience, skills, training, education, etc., compile them into groups of 4-6 words each and use these groups to search for resumes on Internet posting sites. If you find people like yourself, these words are good. If you don't, find better words.

    Submitting Your E-Mail Resume

    (Excerpted from Appendix B of Headhunters Revealed! Career Secrets™ for Choosing and Using Professional Recruiters)

    In Chapter 4, I highly recommend e-mailed resume submission to today's recruiters. Here is a simple, step-by-step guide to cutting, pasting, and formatting an ASCII-text (pronounced "askee"-text) resume into the body of an e-mail along with an "attached" file version for nice, hardcopy purposes. Because it's so effortless for a headhunter to transfer the ASCII-text version into the database, submitting this way will cause the least "resistance" to your resume being included in relevant searches immediately. The attached file of the same resume in Word allows a recruiter to make a far nicer presentation of you to his client, given the ASCII-text version generally looks boring, plain, and often warped. Though many employers don't need the attached file if you submit to them directly, a headhunter definitely does.

    The following steps can be used to create an e-mail submission to a recruiter from a resume constructed in Microsoft Word on a Windows system using Netscape Communicator as the e-mail browser. These basic steps, with slight alterations, can be used with other software or systems.

    1. Open or create your resume in Word.
    2. Set the right margin at 6½ inches.
    3. Choose Select All from the Edit drop-down menu.
    4. Choose Copy from the Edit drop-down menu.
    5. Close out of Word after saving your work.
    6. Two options here: a) go directly to your browser's e-mail messaging facility to paste the resume, or b) go to Notepad in the Accessories menu to tidy and prepare the resume before pasting it in the e-mail.
    7. Enlarge the viewable screen to at least the size of your former Word version (6½ inches).
    8. With your cursor in the body, choose Paste from the Edit drop-down menu of either Notepad or your e-mail message.
    9. Nip and tuck the now ASCII-text version of your resume. Ideally use the word-wrap feature in the Edit drop-down menu (Notepad), or use "hard" carriage returns, to wrap word strings back that may be creeping outside of the margins. Also, replace any characters that did not convert from the Word version to ASCII-text (e.g., use asterisks or hyphens for bullet-points, etc.).
    10. Add whatever introduction and cover letter you choose above the resume, adhering to the same margins. (You can cut and paste this in the same way you did the resume, but keep them together as one document.)
    11. If you're in Notepad, now cut and paste this entire document into your e-mail messaging facility. (Open your browser's e-mail and select New Message.) Nip and tuck again if any word strings have gone astray or gaps/spaces have erupted.
    12. Click Attach File in your browser.
    13. Browse the hard drive to locate the original Word version of your resume and double-click it.
    14. You now have a complete e-mail of your resume for submitting to a recruiter. It contains both an ASCII-text version and an attached file. E-mail yourself to check for any mistakes before sending it to the headhunter.

    The only problem with e-mail is that, despite your best efforts to send an ASCII-text version with no unsightly word-wrap, depending on the recipient's browser, it may occur. However, sticking to these margins will nonetheless render your text version the most legible and "database-able." This process gives recruiters exactly what they need to immediately know if they can help you. If they can, it has you poised for timely database inclusion and/or client company presentation.


    Excerpted from Appendix C of Headhunters Revealed! Career Secrets™ for Choosing and Using Professional Recruiters.   (NOTE:  Some links and sites may have changed since publication.)

    The Internet is constantly changing and expanding. It would be nearly impossible to list every recruiter-oriented resource it contains. Yet, this list of recruitment industry associations, networking organizations, and search-industry information providers can at least jump-start your connection with recruiters and their open positions:

    The Alliance of Medical Recruiters (AMR)
    Over 75 healthcare recruitment firms nationwide make up AMR, a recruiters association which supports the sharing of client and candidate resources among members.

    All-Star Employment Network
    New affiliation of recruiters serving a wide array of specialties. The site is currently geared toward obtaining members but may provide access to affiliate job openings in the future.

    The American Association of Finance and Accounting (AAFA)
    250 high-caliber search firms specializing in the fields of Finance and Accounting. Focused on CPA and MBA professionals, member firms network (make split placements) with one another, so plugging into one can connect you with many.

    The Association of Executive Search Consultants (AESC)
    Composed of 160 member firms worldwide, this is a professional association of exclusively retained-search organizations. More a trade association and less a networking organization, AESC exists mainly to promote public awareness of the executive search business and to enhance industry professionalism.

    Christian Recruiters
    Small but proud association of Christian recruiters focusing specifically on the healthcare industry. Promotes networking among members.

    A membership service for executives. This year over 4,500 search firms and companies will post over 20,000 senior executive-level positions with Exec-U-Net. Over 70% of executive members are currently employed; over 75% have salaries greater than $100,000, 25% with salaries greater than $200,000; over 67% have advanced degrees.

    This innovative web-based career center features thousands of executive level openings from $70,000 to $750,000, as well as providing professional career development services and executive coaching.

    First Interview
    A professional association of 250 search firms focusing specifically in the fields of Sales and Marketing. Promotes heavy networking among members.

    Kennedy Information, Inc.
    Yearly publisher of The Directory of Executive Recruiters, also known as the "Red Book." Available in bookstores and libraries (careers or reference section), you can also conduct a headhunter search online. Site lists various other books and resources.

    National Association of Executive Recruiters (NAER)
    Founded in 1984, NAER membership is a "seal of approval," stating that a firm upholds the standards upon which the association is based. Does not necessarily promote networking.

    National Association of Personnel Services (NAPS)
    The oldest trade association of the staffing industry, NAPS represents over 1800 firms across the country and administers the only industry professional certification, the Certified Personnel Consultant (CPC) designation. Member recruiters are segmented online by areas of specialty and geography.

    National Banking Network (NBN)
    The oldest and largest networking association of independently-owned recruiting firms specializing in the Banking and Financial Services fields.

    National Personnel Associates (NPA) The oldest professional association of executive search firms with over 400 affiliates in the U.S. and overseas. Firms focus on a variety of specialties including Sales, Human Resources, Finance, Engineering, High-tech/MIS/IT, Healthcare, Executive Management, etc. Promotes heavy networking among members.

    A membership service for executives. Currently assists more than 2,300 executive subscribers and receives position listings from nearly 7000 search consultants worldwide. Maintains more than 1,400 job postings, validated and updated daily. Selected by FORTUNE magazine as a "best search site for executives."

    Founded in 1994, Net-Temps boasts a cross-posting distribution of classified employment ads to over 500 Internet search engines, portals, directories, on-line services, and newsgroups. Though permanent job seekers will also benefit, as the name implies, the focus is on professionals seeking temporary or contract work through recruitment firms.

    Private Source
    Newly launched, this site provides access to a nationwide directory of executive recruiters and their open positions. Offers a notification service (they will call you!) when a recruiter expresses interest in your confidentially "coded" background.

    Recruiters Alliance
    A professional online network of retained, contingency, contract and temporary staffing agencies worldwide. Job seekers can have their resume e-mailed directly to member recruiters.

    Recruiters Online Network (RON)
    Over 8,000 registered recruiters make RON the world's largest association of recruiters, executive search firms, employment agencies, and headhunters. Used by members as a posting venue for searches and an avenue for split placements.

    The Search Bulletin
    A membership service for executives. This career tool boasts that almost one-third of the subscribers who report landing a new position attribute their success to the Bulletin. Four of the nation's top 10 graduate business schools have chosen The Search Bulletin as the best career management information service for their alumni.

    SearchNet International
    Operating in all five continents, SearchNet provides access to top executive recruiters specializing in high-level, international management positions.

    Top Echelon
    A worldwide network of over 2,500 affiliated recruiters. Members place over 32,000 people annually and completed over 5,000 split placements in the past 4 years.

    The following sites will provide access to positions being filled by recruiters as well as other professional job-search services. This list is in no way exhaustive — but hopefully still accurate:

    Site specifically focused on all levels of the accounting profession.

    America's Job Bank
    A partnership between the US Department of Labor and the state employment services. Literally lists over a million jobs ranging from professional and technical to blue collar, from management and sales to clerical.

    American Jobs
    Specifically geared toward hi-tech computer and engineering jobs, its database is queried over 2 million times per month. Job postings are updated hourly.

    CareerBuilder Network
    CareerBuilder's "Mega Job Search" technology provides access to nearly every job on the Internet by combining over 25 leading career Web sites. Offers a Personal Search Agent for notification of interesting opportunities.

    A more private online matchmaking service connecting professionals with pre-screened opportunities and employers with pre-screened professionals.

    From the publisher of the JobBank and Knock'em Dead books, CareerCity has won numerous awards and serves over 2.5 million page views per month.

    Partnered with some of the Internet's heaviest traveled Web sites, CareerMart is a popular "click-through" for job seekers.

    Career Mosaic
    Offers job search by specialty among thousands of positions and big-name employers, Online Job Fairs, a Career Resource Center, and even free e-mail.

    View job listings by category or employer. Also has a Resource Center to connect you with other job-posting and professional services.

    Co-founded in 1995, CareerPath is owned by eight major newspapers and boasts the "freshest" jobs anywhere, with no position remaining on the database for more than two weeks.

    Uses advanced technology to connect job seekers, employers, and intermediaries. Has registered over 200,000 job seekers in its database.

    Careers Wall Street Journal
    More career services, support, and listings than you can handle in one log-on session.

    Classifieds 2000
    A division of the popular Excite search engine. Click on the Employment tab on the home page (or buy a car and find a roommate).

    C/net's Search
    Search job postings in more than 100 newsgroups worldwide with one mouse click. Lists various other online job search resources.

    A 10-year old (a long time in Internet years!) service focusing on the IT industry. Programmers, software engineers, systems administrators, and systems analysts can have their immediate availability for permanent and contract positions "announced" to all member recruiters.

    Environmental Career Center
    Site specifically focused on Environmental, Health, and Safety professionals.

    A multi-specialty job and resume posting service.
    On average, 100,000 users visit every day. The site now has over 150,000 current job listings, with salary ranges from entry-level to over $500,000. The top 5 specialties represented are Information Technology, Engineering, Accounting, Sales and Marketing. Hosts CareerBYTES, a newsletter for job seekers.

    Ziff-Davis Publications' Internet arm, ZDNet, is partnered with I-Search to provide a matchmaking site for computer industry employers and professionals.

    One of the pioneers in online employment recruiting, JobOptions was originally known as AdNet and then E.span. Hosts job and resume posting/distribution and career-related content.

    The largest locally focused employment site, has local career hubs in 19 major cities and 77 other metro centers. Also offers its "Resumail" service, which takes certain glitches out of the resume distribution process.

    Jobs & Adverts (USA)
    The US subsidiary of one of Europe's leading Internet-based job posting services. With locations in Bangkok, Vienna, Zurich, Frankfurt, and Washington, D.C., this site can connect you with many international opportunities.

    Primarily focused on the California employment market, former JobSmart has changed its name to JobStar. This is a more career-guidance oriented site, praised by career-guidance guru Richard Nelson Bolles.

    Partnered with over 900 college career centers nationwide. Focuses on listings for graduates and alumni.

    The new combined site for merged online job-listing mammoths Monster Board and Online Career Center. Posting over 210,000 job opportunities, there's something for everyone. Also provides advice in the Career Zones section.

    Hosts and links to sites of various search firms with available positions. For a small fee, resumes can be posted for 6 months with a direct e-mail link to you.

    NationJob Network
    Receives approximately 4 million hits per week; offers P.J. Scout, a private search agent that notifies the job seeker of appropriate opportunities.

    Passport Access
    Job and resume posting site specifically geared toward the technical fields.

    International in scope, as the name implies, this site lists positions in over 80 countries. Originally focused on Information Technology positions, PlanetRecruit now supports a wide array of fields.

    Originally organized to provide job posting and search for the software and hi-tech management consulting fields, PursuitNet has branched into the telecommunications, aerospace, financial, and sales/marketing arenas.

    Hosts a database updated daily with the most current career opportunities on the Internet. Allows for localized search through state newsgroups and government resources.

    The name says it all: only posts career opportunities with guaranteed compensation packages of more than $100,000. The only executive-level site singled out in U.S. News and World Report's "Best of the Web" awards.

    Vault Reports
    A full-on career management site, with job postings, specific industry research, message boards, and a "career store."

    The Works USA
    A window to several job and resume posting sites, each geared to a particular job seeker: SalesWorks, FinancialWorks, MedicalWorks, LegalWorks, InfoWorks (computer jobs), TelecomWorks, OfficeWorks, HRWorks, EducationWorks and CollegeWorks.

    Weddle's Web Guide
    Recommended by FORTUNE magazine, Weddle's is a total job seeker's Internet resource. Offers books, newsletters, and Internet advice to assist all participants in the job search and hiring process.

    Yahoo! Need I say more? Hosts online career advice by headhunter/author Nick Corcodilos. Click on "Jobs" under the Business & Economy heading, then "Recruiting and Placement."

    And if all that ain't enough to boggle your career mind, here are a few search engines/directories that can point you to further recruiter resources:

    Alta Vista Alta Vista search engine's posting and career site. Click on "Jobs" under the Business & Finance heading, then "Executive Search."

    Click on the Recruiters category in this "most award-winning search engine." Click on "Jobs," then "Executive Search."

    Lists the 100 most popular job sites, most of which list recruiter's openings.

    Both a posting site hosted by CareerPath as well as a directory of other career-oriented services.

    Click on the Recruiters category.

    Important: There is no intention in these excerpts, in the book itself, or elsewhere on this site, to render professional career services. The purpose is simply to educate and entertain. For expert assistance, we recommend the services of an appropriate professional. Also, listing of the above links is a service to our viewers and is for informational purposes only. Neither The Career Secrets™ Newsletter, Hunter Arts Publishing (or any of its publications), nor its owners profess to be endorsed by or affiliated with any organization whose link is listed here, nor is any endorsement or affiliation implied. Viewers who'd like to suggest a valuable career link for inclusion in The Career Secrets™ Newsletter should e-mail pertinent data to Links are listed at the discretion of the editors.