Aidan’s* story is a testament to the power of Employability Skills Training (EST) which helped him overcome obstacles and secure full-time work after more than two years of unemployment.
During COVID-19, Aidan, in his mid-to-late 20s, lost his job and faced the challenging task of re-entering the workforce. For extra support to return to work, he commenced his Employability Skills Training program with Jobfind in July 2023.
His limited employment history which included casual jobs in industries such as customer service, food service and cleaning was proving to be a barrier to employment. His EST facilitator, Demelza St George, soon discovered that Aidan’s job prospects could significantly benefit from a revamped resume and tailored cover letters.
Mastering resumes and cover letters
While most people commence her EST course with a resume and cover letter, Demelza guarantees they will finish the course with a fully optimised resume and skillfully tailored cover letters.
“We improve resume writing in the EST course because a poorly written resume and cover letter can greatly reduce your chances of getting an interview,” says Demelza.
Some of the common mistakes Demelza sees on resumes and cover letters include:
- Mixed fonts and font sizes – the resume looks cluttered and unprofessional.
- Tables and borders – typically, applicant tracking systems can’t read content in tables, photos or boxes.
- Formatting features like italics and underline which can confuse human and machine readers.
Demelza understands that resumes are very personal documents, so she spends time to individually coach her students to optimise their documents for future employment.
Demelza’s top three top tips for resumes and cover letters:
- Include your employability skills like communication and working in teams. Employers value the skills and personal qualities you bring that will help you thrive in any workplace.
- Submit a Word document that can be easily read by humans or recruitment software.
- If applying for part-time or casual work, include your days of availability.
Industry awareness experience fast-tracks Aidan into a job
Many job seekers who have been out of the workforce benefit from a face-to-face introduction to local employers. That’s why Employability Skills Training includes industry awareness experiences which often involve a site tour of a local employer’s premises.
Demelza researches online job advertisements in her local area, then contacts hiring employers.
“I invite hiring employers to come and speak with our participants about their industry and jobs, or we will go onsite and tour their business,” explains Demelza.
It was an industry awareness experience that opened the door to employment for Aidan.
When Aidan’s EST group toured a local manufacturer’s warehouse and production line, “his eyes lit up”, says Demelza.
“He was like a kid in a candy shop, he was so animated, it was lovely to see,” says Demelza.
His enthusiasm impressed the employer who was eager to see Aidan’s resume.
Luckily for Aidan, his resume had undergone a recent upgrade in Employability Skills Training!
To Aidan’s delight, he was offered a job and commenced work as a full-time production officer four days later.
What’s more, Aidan’s new employer is eager to invite more individuals from the EST program to visit his factory, understanding that this has been an excellent opportunity to meet and assess potential candidates firsthand.
* name changed for privacy
About Employability Skills Training with Jobfind
Jobfind delivers Workforce Australia – Employability Skills Training in locations in NSW, VIC, QLD and WA.
Employability Skills Training is a pre-employment group program tailored to individual participants. Participants interact in work-like experiences and industry scenarios for real-world preparation for local jobs.
Employability Skills Training is also designed to support local employers to find the right staff to meet their business needs.
To enquire, please email email@example.com