How to prepare for a job interview – Part 1: The Resume πŸ“„

Oh, how the times have changed in the job market. A couple of years ago it was very hard to find any type of job in Iasi for a UX Designer. Now, you can just do a simple search on LinkedIn and you’ll find at least six open positions, if not more.
I am extremely happy that this is happening because it means our industry is growing locally which can only mean good things for designers. πŸ˜‰

So, for the people who are at their first job interview or looking forward to one, please let me give you a couple of tips for how to better prepare for this event.

I will be mostly be focusing on entry level positions (internships & juniors) because this is where most people need help. Let’s say you found an internship position at a company. Before you hit ‘Apply’ let’s see what we are working with.

I will break down the information into sections and for now we will just be focusing on the CV / Resume.

The Template

Of course this is the first step. Creating the resume is an important step and from my experience as an interviewer I would say that it should give an idea about who you are and what you want.

Since you’re applying for a designer position, I recommend creating your own template for the resume or at least using something different than europass or other mass-used resume templates. It is your opportunity to give a good first impression and catch the eye of the person reading it.

It’s also a good way of showing that you can use shapes, patterns, colors and typography to guide the reader and give them a good experience πŸ˜‰.

Try to keep it short. One page is almost always enough. A resume is exactly that: a short description of your experience, knowledge and skills thus far.

The content

The resume should only contain information that is useful in the context of the position you are applying for. I am probably not going to be interested in your college grades and your database knowledge because that is usually not in the job description of a designer.

Order things by priority: Personal Information, Contact information, Previous experience, Skills, Language, Education. Those are the basics. And yeah, education is last because in most cases it doesn’t really say much about your skills. Since most people who apply in this field might not have had a formal education in UX Design, that part is not that relevant.

Always have contact information on it, like a phone number and an email address, preferably one that contains your real name like: john.smith@gmail.com not johny34234@gmail.com.

Also, use a professional looking photo and not a selfie of you on the beach and definitely not two people in the same photo. Yes, I have seen that on a resumeπŸ˜’.

Avoid using vague visual elements to describe your level of experience you have. Like in the example below:

I have no clue what the pencil grading system means. Is five pencils the maximum? Does this mean you are an expert in ‘Design Thinking’? Is three pencils the minimum or is it one? What about zero pencils?

A good example would be to use words like ‘beginner, advanced, expert’ or better yet say how many years you have been doing or using the thing you’re referring to.

Your English level is important, write it down! If you are having trouble with writing and speaking but you understand almost anything then you might be below B1. Usually most people are at B1 and if they truly love English maybe at C1.

Portfolio Link

Since your resume is going to be sent via the interwebz, it is useful to add links to your work, portfolio, website or LinkedIn profile. I consider having a LinkedIn account part of the resume creation because you can use it to connect with people.

Having these links will make it easier for the recruiter to know more about you and for the technical people to keep track of all your information.

I cannot emphasise enough on the importance of having a portfolio. It makes the interviewer’s work so much easier and you will have a much better chance of getting the interview or even the job.

Once you got all of the information ready on the final resume, make sure it also looks good in black and white because sometimes recruiters will print it like that.

Sending it

If you are applying for an open position, it is important to be professional in the email you send together with your resume. You can also add a few lines about why you are interested in the job and that specific company as that shows what exactly is your motivation for wanting to work as a designer.

Don’t forget to take advantage of any friends you have that can give you a referral. Any source of information and trust from inside the company is useful. But more on this is another post. πŸ˜€

I hope this post was useful! If you have any questions for me or would like me to help you with some feedback on your resume, you can sent it here. Good luck! ✌