When it comes to resumes, there's a right way and a wrong way, especially in the HR industry where the people you are trying to reach are likely to be resume experts. The right way, obviously, is the one that works best for employment managers and recruiters. While hundreds of books and articles have been written on the do's and don'ts of printed resumes, in the words of one industry expert, once you decide to venture out on the information superhighway, "it's time to think again."

There are now resume hubs on the World Wide Web that enable people from all areas of the country and the workforce to have an interactive resume "on-line." You don't have to necessarily look for a job on the Internet, because once your resume is there, the jobs will find you. However, if you decide to go into cyberspace, you do need to rethink your strategy.

First, remember that you are not working on a piece of paper and your resume is not going to sit in a stack of paper on someone's desk, so you have to figure out how to be 'discovered' or searched out. HR industry recruiters search resume databases keywords. Keywords are words that describe your skills or experiences and can be used as parameters in a search. Most often, they will come from the specific terminology that is used in your job, such as "personnel," "H.R.," "staff relations," etc.

Thousands of Southern California recruiters are turning rto this high-tech, but do-it-yourself method of headhunting and expect the Internet to be easier and more accurate as they review applicants for jobs. Key words help them complete a search in minutes and the result is a dozen or more people who are a great fit for the job.

For instance, "team building" or "employee grievances" will immediately help classify the kinds of experience and skills that an HR pro has to offer and 'company events' will define them even further. Likewise, 'month end close' or 'general ledger' give a broad description for an accountant, while 'cash reconciliations' or 'tax planning' will take him or her to a higher level. Choose these keywords carefully, since they say volumes about what you have to offer to your next employer.

Next, be sure to give a short summary of your job experience for each position on your resume,don't rely on the position title. Because different HR titles mean different things in different companies, you must append that information with additional, specific keywords. Donn't be afraid to use a lot of words. You will not be punished for length in the same way that you would on paper.

Again, new medium, new rules. And since you are trying to have your resume stand out in a database, the more keywords, the more times employers will "hit" your resume by inputting their requirements. Also, be sure to post on a database that enables you to update your resume as your gain new skills, reach new achievements and complete training or certificate programs.

One very important distinction is to use a resume database that allows employers to find you from all parts of the U.S. and the world. Some databases allow employers to specify the location of jobs if they are unable to offer relocation assistance. However, they can often keep their search open and seek out anyone who is qualified. This is a distinct advantage for job seekers. Great opportunities can come from anywhere, and with the Internet, anywhere is a very big place.

Finally, everyone, employed or unemployed, experienced or entry level should avoid paying to post their resume. Let the employers pick up the tab. There are many free services available, from website hubs like the Monster Board and On-Line Career Center to the thousands of specialized usegroups. There is rarely a reason for the individual to have to pay.

In the late 90s, most of the firms that were searching the Internet for talent were the nation's largest, most geographically diverse employers. However, small and medium size companies can fully be expected to begin making much greater use of the Internet as a recruiting tool with the growing presence of candidate databases.

Tom Bonigut is an internet career consultant based in Woodland Hills.

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