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After creating the perfect resume, you then need to
distribute it. You'll likely be sending some professionally
printed hard copies, especially to "A list" companies or
organizations you've set your sights on. But just as likely,
you'll be distributing other copies electronically.

Presuming you've written a great resume to begin with,
here's what you really need to know about your electronic

1. It must be searchable.

2. It must be in ASCII format.


Someone searching the Internet resume banks for the perfect
candidate (you) needs to be able to weed out all the
unqualified candidates, which potentially number in the tens
of thousands nowadays. Typically, they'll enter search terms
intended to eliminate the vast majority of posted resumes
and select the most promising. They do this much as one
might perform an Internet search on Google or another search
engine, by entering key word search terms

Their search might be limited to a certain geographical
area, a certain skill set or qualification, or a certain job
description, among obvious search categories.

The geographical part is easy - your contact information
will help someone looking for a software designer in San
Francisco Bay area or a pretzel maker in Milwaukee find you
if you are qualified and live in the right part of the

However, if you have technical qualifications that can be
searched in different ways - "Bachelor of Science" and
"B.Sc." for example, your resume should use both variants so
that a search engine finds you either way.

And if you possess job experience that's highly relevant to
the job in question, be sure to describe it in the most
common ways that it would likely be searched on.

Tip: Read through your completed resume and see if you can't
describe qualifications, degrees, or job titles in multiple
alternative ways throughout the resume. This will increase
the chances you'll be found in an online search.

ASCII Format:

Your professionally laid out and formatted paper resume may
end up looking like gibberish if simply transformed into an
electronic copy. Programs like Word allow you to format nice
looking documents with features such as tabs, bullets,
centering, bold, italic and other word processing niceties.

Unfortunately, when converted to electronic form, many of
these word processing features are lost. Worse, what's left
over may bear no resemblance to the exquisite resume that
you labored over to produce.

Fortunately, there is an easy solution. You can prepare a
simple text version in a text editor like Notepad or any of
the dozens of other text editors out there. In this case,
you'll replace many of these text effects. For example,
you'll replace bullets with asterisks, word wrap with a hard
carriage return, and tabs and justification effects with
simple spaces.

Another solution is to use a program specifically designed
for writing resumes like WinWay Resume Express. (See the "Do
It Yourself Resumes" page at to
learn more about this inexpensive handy program.) It
features an easy way to transform your resume into a
searchable electronic version with very little effort after
you've created the word processing formatted version.

No matter which method you use, be sure you've taken these
simple preparations for electronic distribution before you
hit "send." This will greatly increase the chances that your
resume will reach its intended audience.
Copyright 2005 by Vincent Czaplyski, all rights reserved.

You may republish this article in its entirety, as long as
you include the complete signature file without

About the Author

Copywriter and consultant Vincent Czaplyski is founder of, your online source for
professionally written "industrial strength" resumes and
cover letters guaranteed to land you an interview.