From personalized video submissions to well-designed websites and resumes, we reviewed each and every application, then interviewed a handful of candidates for the position and hired our new 88C intern Diana Pasgas. Based on what we look for in a resume and a new hire, here are eight things to consider when applying for an internship position — or any position — at 88 Creative.
- Pay attention – fulfill job post requirements
When applying, it’s important to pay attention to the job posting and include all required links and requests. We generally ask applicants to provide a resume, link to their LinkedIn profile, and relevant work samples. These three things are the first thing we look for in applications, and taking the steps to fulfill posting requirements demonstrates attention to detail. We’re not always looking for just resumes though – especially when it comes to design or digital marketing positions, your supporting elements (links to social channels/blog, design portfolio) are way more important than your resume.
- Show initiative – take that extra step
Although we usually only require a resume along with a few work samples, some applicants take it a step further by crafting a personalized cover letter, or creating a video. One applicant even sent us a pizza! Creating additional materials to complement your resume can add personality to your experience and emphasize your initiative.
- Experience isn’t everything – go above and beyond to supplement your application with additional writing samples
We definitely understand the Catch 22 of entering the workforce — you can’t find a job without experience and you can’t get experience without a job. We get this. Perhaps you may not have related work experience and samples but you may be able to show off your skills by providing examples from school projects, links to your blog, or even a personal online portfolio. Here’s a great example of a stellar blog put together by a former graduate seeking entry-level employment. Providing writing samples, whether academic or personal, is a great way to set yourself apart from other candidates and illustrate your creativity, style, and skillset, which carry over in a professional capacity.
- Pay attention to your email – craft a winning email
Many applicants put a tremendous amount of effort and care into their resume, often consulting professors, teachers, friends, and family members to review their CV before sending – great job! But did you know that showing personality, and double-checking grammar, formatting, and flow in your email is just as important as in your resume? Consider your email the gatekeeper to your resume: if you capture the reader’s attention through your email, they’ll certainly take a peek at your resume and attachments. Your email is a reflection of your writing style and provides the reader (or in this case, myself, the PR Manager) foresight into your professionalism and provides a good indication as to how you’d communicate with clients and journalists.
- Spelchek, spelcheck, spellcheck
If you’re applying for a job in ‘pubic’ relations, please don’t send us your application – I’m sorry to say, you’re applying for the wrong position, in fact, perhaps the wrong industry all together. All jokes aside, there’s really no excuse for spelling errors in your application or email, but do we understand human computer errors, and usually give applicants the benefit of the doubt on their first spelling error. The first error, spelling or grammatical, may have been accidental and the second one maybe coincidental, but the the third and fourth state something else altogether. Just be sure to use that handy spellcheck button – it’s there for a reason.
- Include job descriptions
When reviewing resumes we like to know where you worked and what your position was but we’d also love to know what your role was and what you accomplished as well. Many applicants send along beautifully designed resumes with custom logos, images and formatting, but their resumes lack the required information to live up to its purpose. My point: we want to know more than just your title.
- Do your research – know where and why you’re applying
Instead of sharing your resume with the infamous “whom it may concern,” or “sir or madam” research the name of the hiring manager, or person listed in the job posting and address them by their name. These bucket terms, though seemingly polite, actually come across as disingenuous. In the age of information, there’s no excuse for not typing in a few keystrokes to find the name of the person you’re sending your resume to. In our case, all our names are all in our emails (our format: [name]@88creative.ca).
- Don’t give up
We’re often limited by the number of positions available but it doesn’t mean that we weren’t interested in hiring you or that there was anything particularly wrong with your resume. We often file resumes that we love and stand out for six to eight months past the posting date in the event that another position becomes available – in fact we hired our Digital Marketing Coordinator Brittany almost a year after she initially applied because her application stood out so much (why? She had done her research and mentioned our social media posts & client projects; she linked to her past work projects & showcased success metrics; and she included a photo of a meme. Sold!).
Charlene is the PR Director at 88 Creative. You can follow her on Instagram at @charlenasariahanne.