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Hiring Hoosiers: Indy woman helps jobseekers get resumes into the must-see pile

Posted at 9:21 AM, Mar 12, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-12 09:23:09-05

INDIANAPOLIS — A resume is a key to landing a job and a key to recruiters creating a better and more inclusive workplace.

Alana Henry is an urban gardener. The produce ends up on her dining room table and some is sold at the farmers' market. But from 9 p.m.-5 p.m., she is focused on the marketplace as she seeks to find the best employees.

"What have you done, and how does that set you apart?" Henry said. "And how will you show that unique value in your resume?"

Henry's company, The Writique, offers people help with their resume and interviewing skills. All are key to getting the job, especially from companies seeking a diverse workforce.

Henry said resumes often fail to disclose languages spoken and travel and cultural experiences, which can be an asset to a company. You can also highlight your diversity by disclosing your leadership in professional and social groups. Resumes should not just list jobs, but rather show what you did to make the position better.

"I'm a proponent of showcasing the value of those differences," she said. "That speaks to a better collective for all of us."

Three women turned to Henry to make sure their resumes landed in the must-see pile.

"Most people struggle, honestly," Henry said. "It's hard to figure out that is a tangible value, but how to articulate that for a prospective employer."

Arlene Johnson didn't know how her study abroad trip to Poland would fit in a resume. That journey and her multiple achievements support her current role in a large tech company.

"You sell yourself short," Johnson said. "You may miss out on opportunity. Trusting what you have laid out and things you have done can put you in a better position career wise."

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Angela Murphy's husband was looking for a new job for himself for her son wanted an internship. Both needed help putting on paper their purpose, their personalities and their potential.

"Employers looked at the resume and had a good idea of who he was before they met him," Murphy said.

Dr. Sharr Pechac, of Bloomington, uses her experience in education, human resources and business and seeks to earn a paycheck and power her company, GreyPrint Consulting.

"I don't know about you but I had a hard time bragging on myself," Pechac said. "This was an opportunity for me to answer some questions that allowed me brag on myself a little so I could highlight some of my major accomplishments."

Resumes can open doors, but information can trigger name, age and gender bias.

"We have to recognize that bias," Henry said. "If I am not valued as who I am as a Black woman, that's not the place I want to work."

People who do the hiring like those who work in the garden will reap what it sows.

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