I have meet with several youth workers who are currently looking for a job. It seems that there are a lot of youth workers looking for a job and not a lot of youth ministry positions available. With the market in the church world looking as dismal as employment everywhere else I want to share a few tech tips that will help you be more prepared than most and stand out a little. Before I get into this, remember that I am giving you tech tips, I am not a professional human resource person.
Also, these are great things to create while you have a job because, 1) Some of these tips are near impossible to do without a job and 2) If you need to start a job hunt you want to hit the ground running, not spending days or weeks compiling content.
Let’s start with the basics, the resume.
If you are looking for some writing tips check out this site. About 2 years ago I did an exhaustive search for a junior high director, I was blown away at how hard it was to get to know a potential candidate. Resumes were sloppy, unimpressive, too long, incomplete, etc. Maybe colleges are telling their graduate to mail a resume but I want it to come to my inbox. I was blown away at how many resumes came by snail mail and how many were jumbled on my computer. Remember, your resume might contain a unique font, a special header, or you may own a different software version than the person you are sending it to (ever open a MS Word document from someone else and it was not formated correctly…this could be a font or software version issue). You do not want this to happen with a potential employer.
Once you have your resume ready, save it as a PDF document. If you don’t have the software to do this, just Google “Document to PDF,” you can do this for free. A PDF will freeze your formatting and fonts so when your resume is opened it will look exactly the way you saved it on your computer. I am sure there are a few other ways, but PDF is a computer standard and anyone with a computer should be able to open a PDF document.
To save as a PDF try to “save as” PDF or print to PDF. If your software will not do either of these, try this free software called Cute PDF. It is not a good idea to use an online converter like this. If you are using unique fonts, chances are an online system will not convert well. The best results will happen on the computer where the resume was written.