Have You Done Your Work History Yet?
Have you done your Work History yet?
If not why not?
Unfortunately or fortunately, however you look at it, Federal, State and many other job applications need a lot of detail about you, when you are applying for a job. I know that Maine‘s are almost onerous and the Federal Government application is not easy to do quickly, so sooner or later you have to put together your work history.
If you have the work history completed, you are not under as much pressure if you suddenly need to complete an application quickly (like yesterday, but no later than today) and then end up not presenting yourself in the best possible light that is the typical result, when you do something too quickly.
This happened to me when I submitted my Federal Resume for a Veteran’s Service Representative position that opened with a three-day window at the end of March. I learned about the announcement on day two. Which coincidentally, was the first day that I started talking to with the professionals at the Augusta Career Center. My application that I submitted definitely was not the quality that it would be today.
To be brutally honest I was not ready for that application and when I look at it now, it needed a lot more work to be a one that would get me to the next step.
I am still job searching, so you can tell what the reviewers thought of my submission . Actually they cancelled the vacancy announcement, so I am hopeful that it will open again soon.
When are you going to start working on your job history?
I know we are all busy and there is a lot of background work that you need to do to put together your work history correctly. Especially if you want to make sure that you are capturing ALL of your experience, not just the stuff you remember off the top of your head.
I spent this morning and most of the afternoon updating and piecing together my work history again. This meant going through all the below resources, which I strong suggest that you do as well:
- Old evaluations, which are fantastic source documents to remember your many collateral duties and projects that you completed and have forgotten about.
- Look at your DD214 and training certificates (you kept all of them – right).
- Letters of recommendation for OCS, The Service Academy (when you were a lot younger), service schools or promotion board recommendations – they all have a lot of the things you did that you can put into and are things that upper management (senior leadership) thought was important enough to put into your recommendation – even if you might have written the first draft yourself.
- The medal/award narratives, which have projects, accomplishments and other details that tell why you were commended. If they were important then, they sure could be important now. Especially if under the FOIA you requested copies of all your service records – they give you copies of the actual Award Recommendation, which has a wealth of information about what others thought that you did and you can put into your work history.
- Any Job descriptions of positions that you held and kept a copy of.
- Vacancy announcements or newspaper ads for jobs you applied for and got.
- Old resumes that you have written – why reinvent the wheel?
- Any other documents you have that will help you remember what you have done professionally and help to document that you actually did the work you are claiming that you did.
It is also nice to have supporting documentation available. That way if someone is in such awe of all the stuff you have accomplished and tries to say that you couldn’t possibly have done all that you claim. You know exactly where to find the documentation to support what you have done.
- It will make writing resumes a lot easier to find targeted accomplishments and I can copy/paste from my work history to my résumé and edit the accomplishment to meet that targeted resume’s professional needs. Instead of relying on my memory and re-creating or re-using the same information over and over.
- Federal and State job applications are famous for the level of detail that they require (the State of Maine‘s requirements can be daunting), but if you already have 90% of the work done – they are a lot easier, especially if there is a time crunch.
- When sitting down with your VA Counselor, Career Center Counselor, Job Coach, Mentor, Networking or anyone else who wants to help you, if you have put this in your traveling portfolio, they will have a better understanding of what you have done, what you are capable of doing and they can help you more quickly.