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At one point during my search for employment after law school, I sent roughly 10 to 12 resumes off to law firms each day. I know for a fact I was not being strategic with how I disseminated my resume and cover letter.

For the most part, it was just a numbers game to me. The more resumes I sent, I thought, the more chances I had of being contacted by an employer. What I failed to realize was that by not taking the time to carefully draft my resume and specifically market myself to a law firm that would need the skill sets I acquired during school and from my internships, I was wasting my time, resume paper and the recruiter’s time.

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In order to effectively market yourself to future employers and keep your resume from being tossed in the trash, or unceremoniously forgotten about, implement the following tips:

1) Customize Your Resume and Cover Letter

Many of us have numerous skill sets due to the copious amounts of education and internship opportunities we have received, but throwing all of them on one resume and seeing what sticks might not be the best approach. If you are applying for a marketing position, be certain to extract and make that experience highly visible on both documents. Making this information readily available will increase your chances of being noticed.

2) Spell Check

One way to show a recruiter or hiring manager that you do not pay attention to detail is by not correcting any misspelled words in your documents. Take your time and do a thorough edit to be certain that you have no misspelled words and no grammatical errors.

3) Send a Working File

Be certain that the file you attach to the hiring site, or email to the hiring manager has a file that actually works. Most recruiters and hiring managers will not send you an email seeking a reattachment.

4) Include Your Availability
Giving the hiring manager or recruiter all necessary information at the onset will make your resume more appealing. Instead of having to fish for more information to ascertain if you are a fit, if everything they need is right in front of them, it makes their job easier and makes you a stronger candidate.
Happy job hunting!

Rashida Maples, Esq. is Founder and Managing Partner of J. Maples & Associates ( . She has practiced Entertainment, Real Estate and Small Business Law for 10 years, handling both transactional and litigation matters. Her clients include R&B Artists Bilal and Olivia, NFL Superstar Ray Lewis, Fashion Powerhouse Harlem’s Fashion Row and Hirschfeld Properties, LLC.


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Get The Job: How To Keep Your Resume From Being Tossed Like Yesterday’s Garbage  was originally published on