Understand the Organization and Job Description
At KPMG, we want you to feel confident that you are making the right choice for your career, your future, and your life. Taking the time to understand the needs of the firm and the responsibilities of the position, along with identifying what skills and experience you can bring to the role are helpful when evaluating where to apply. Focusing on some of the key attributes of the organization and particular role can also help you create an effective resume.
Aesthetic/Physical Appearance and Structure:
Before meeting with an employer in a formal interview setting, an employer will first meet you on paper through your resume. Making an excellent first impression is crucial, and this can be done by ensuring your resume is aesthetically pleasing and that it entices the employer to continue reading. The following are suggestions for constructing an engaging and visually enticing resume:
- Ensure that the overall presentation of your resume is neat and professional looking
- Choose wisely when bolding or italicizing words, as it can clutter the visual presentation of a resume
- Keep the content concise, as a rule of thumb try to keep it to two pages or less
- Employers receive numerous applications so it is important that the format of your resume directs them to the information you want them to see first
- Ensure that you have touched on a range of key components within this format that will demonstrate your fit with the role and organization you have applied to
Below is guideline for a typical resume, but you may wish to tweak it based on your skills and experiences.
- This usually includes your name, mailing address, e-mail address, and home and/or cell phone numbers
- Tailor this section to the specific job description by including the name of the position being applied for.
Summary of Skills/Profile
- Outline and briefly explain relevant experience, specific skills, key characteristics, and technical qualifications
- Include the institution names and programs accompanied by locations and dates, making sure to list items in chronological order.
- Include job title, company name, location, and dates of employment for each position, making sure to list items in chronological order
- Provide your duties and responsibilities for each former position, outline how you performed major tasks and the skills you gained, and support your statements with specific accomplishments or quantifiable results
- It may be helpful to organize this section in a format similar to "Employment History," remaining consistent with your use of the chronological format
- Outline your responsibilities, and emphasize soft skills, such as team work and leadership experiences
- This section is applicable if you have a substantial number of awards that you feel are relevant to the position for which you are applying
- Organize the items chronologically, and provide a brief explanation where necessary
- Employers seek well-rounded individuals, so extracurricular experience can serve as a great selling feature for students
- List activities that you think are relevant to the job description and outline the actions you took and skills you gained which are applicable to the role
Once you have completed your resume, ensure to review your resume, checking for grammar and typos. It is a good idea to have a third party read it over and provide you with unbiased feedback.
The purpose of constructing an effective cover letter is to demonstrate your suitability for an organization by identifying how your past academic, employment, volunteer, and extracurricular activities make you a top candidate. This is your chance to build upon your resume by expanding on the snippets of information you have provided pertaining to your former experiences and accomplishments.
Understand the Organization and Job Description
Taking the time to understand the needs of the firm and the responsibilities of the position, along with identifying what skills and experience you can bring to the role are helpful when evaluating where to begin your career. To gather useful information about the firm visit our Campus Website, talk to Campus Ambassadors, and network with individuals who have had experience with the firm. Focusing on some of the key attributes of the organization and particular role can also help you create an effective cover letter.
Writing a cover letter canbe a daunting task and we want to simplify the process to help you get started. Below are a few general guidelines to help you stay focused when writing your cover letter.
The opening paragraph is your opportunity to make a great first impression, grab the employer’s attention and entice him/her to continue reading. Ensure that you touch on a number of important items that demonstrate your desire for the position you are applying to, which may include:
- How you learned of the opportunity and why you are interested in the job and organization. This demonstrates the effort that you put into targeting this specific cover letter.
- Highlighting your top skills that align with the job description not only shows the employer your suitability, but also your understanding of job requirements and expectations
The body of your cover letter is a place for you to build upon your resume and touch on significant experiences that you may have not had room to include in your resume. This is your opportunity to discuss the relevance your experience to the job being applied to and prove to the employer how you can add value to the organization. Below are a few tips for communicating your message clearly and concisely:
- Try to avoid simply repeating the facts stated on your resume; instead, attempt to demonstrate how your experiences have enabled you to gain the skills necessary for the position. This will serve to demonstrate your perfect fit with an organization
- Focus on the positive accomplishments that have resulted from your experiences-it is important to show an employer how you have actually applied your skills in real life
- Be sure to include relevant skills and abilities that align specifically with the position requirements
- It can be easy to get carried away when drawing upon experiences from a variety of areas, including employment, volunteer, and extracurricular, so choose those that are most relevant to the specific role
The closing paragraph is the image of you that an employer will remember most clearly; therefore, it is important to create a positive impression. Below are some tips for enhancing the quality of your paragraph:
- Be concise and avoid simply repeating what you have already stated throughout the letter
- Express interest in meeting with the employer, as this demonstrates your interest in the position and your ability to take iniative
- This is the last impression you will make, so try to set yourself apart. You may emphasize how you can be an asset to the firm, or highlight a unique characteristic that enhances your value as an employee, but make sure to leave the employer feeling confident in your suitability for the firm.
Once you have completed your cover letter, ensure to review it, checking for grammar and typos. It is a good idea to have a third party read it over and provide you with unbiased feedback.
What is CACEE?
The Canadian Association of Career Educators and Employers (CACEE) is a national non-profit partnership of employer recruiters and career services professionals. The organization aims to provide authoritative information, advice, professional development opportunities, and other services to employers, career services professionals, and students. For more information, you can visit the CACEE website at www.cacee.com.
The CACEE Form is a supplementary job application tool. It outlines deeper aspects of an employee's character for future employers. The form highlights not only resume basics, such as past career experiences and volunteerism, but also achievements and activities that one pursues outside of their career. The CACEE Form is submitted in conjunction with your transcript and is used to fill in the necessary details that employers are looking for. Remember, the form acts as your personal brochure for potential employers to assess your suitability for the position and organization, so ensure that it markets your skills and abilities well
Helpful Hints to Writing an Effective CACEE Form:
- You must understand yourself first. Before you begin, conduct a self-assessment of your particular skill set. Self-assessment is a process through which you become aware of your strengths and weaknesses, skills and abilities, interests, values, goals, and aspirations. This is done for you and you only, so be honest! Identifying this information will help you to better describe your former work, academic, and/or volunteer experiences, with an emphasis on those skills that match with the strategic needs of the firm.
- Know your audience. Ensure that you target your form towards the specific position and organization you are applying to. When discussing former work, volunteer, and extracurricular experiences, it is important to highlight skills that align with the job requirements, as this will demonstrate to employers your genuine interest in the position.
- Maintain focus. Don't try to cover everything. As you will see, the CACEE Form provides a generous space in which to discuss your past experiences, accomplishments, and skills. Outline your top few accomplishments in each area that are relevant to the position and demonstrate your suitability to the firm.
- Write with confidence. The CACEE Form is a vehicle to market the best version of yourself, so take advantage! Your goal is to demonstrate your suitability for an organization by setting yourself apart. Highlight your skills, abilities, accomplishments, and experiences, remembering to relate them to the position and organization. Employers seek candidates who will add value to the workplace and writing confidently will enhance what you have to offer.
- Keep it simple. Try not to use fancy jargon and overly complex terms. Use "buzz words" sensibly and avoid "fluff." Employers want to know right off the bat what you have to offer, so keep your language simple in order to get across the message concisely and clearly. Using intricate terminology that has no relevance to your accomplishments will be obvious to recruiters.
- Review and revise! One of the easiest and most often forgotten steps in any writing process is the editing stage. Once you have completed a first draft of your CACEE Form, it is crucial to review and revise. Check for grammar, typos, proper sentence structure, and consistent use of verb tenses. The final key to success in writing the CACEE Form is recruiting someone with an objective and unbiased perspective to provide you with constructive criticism.
- Finally, have you presented the best possible version of yourself? Remember, your CACEE Form is not only a supplementary job application tool, but also a marketing tool. Does your form present an accurate representation of yourself and ensure that your skills, qualifications, experience, interest, and passion to excel in the position and firm are evident? If you can answer "yes" to this question, you are on the right path to creating an effective CACEE Form.