Helpful Pieces of Advice on Composing Your First Attorney Resume

How to Get Your First Lawyer job

Having received a diploma, the first difficulty on the path of a young specialist does not know where to work as a lawyer without experience. After graduation, do not immediately expect the employer to find you and offer you the job of your dreams with a high income. You should take the initiative into your hands and look for options for building your lawyer career.

A well-written resume is the key to success. It must not have any grammatical errors, should have a clear structure and carry important information for the employer. You should approach writing your cover letter in the same way, since it will help you stand out from other candidates for the attorney position. If in doubt, you can always turn to the attorney resume service for help, but why not try your luck first? Below are some secrets to writing an effective resume and cover letter.

How to Compose a Successful Lawyer Resume

Here are the vital components of a resume:

  • Photo. It must be adequate and of high quality. The perfect choice is a neutral portrait in the business attire. Other options are not suitable, although they are often seen on the resume. A photo of you hugging a friend or with a glass of wine can ruin even the best resume.
  • Contact details. A work email is not a means of demonstrating your originality. Leave any cutiepie, bunny5, and ilovepizza for those wishing to return 2005. Be sure to indicate the phone number legal hiring managers can call you. Optionally, add links to social networks.
  • Work experience. If you worked in your specialty, indicate where, for how long, etc. If you worked in unrelated spheres, like as a courier or hostess, do not indicate these. If there is no work experience, but there are internships in all kinds of government agencies or in a law firm, add them. However, sometimes you can talk about non-related jobs. For example, if you have little experience in a specialty or you want to focus on certain responsibilities, which, in your opinion, can be a plus in a new position.

You may also want to indicate your functional responsibilities during internship, such as searching for certain information required by the leading specialist, acquaintance with new decrees and acts in the legislative field, writing simple legal documents and submitting them for verification and signature, registration of legal documents, etc.

  • Education. Be plain and simple in this section. University, the degree you received, graduation year, the name of the faculty.
  • Languages. Indicate what languages you speak and at what level. If there are certificates, then it would be reasonable to indicate which and what level they confirm.
  • Additional education or activities. These are all your conferences, educational programs, and so on. Provide the title, date, and organizer.
  • Additional information. This includes your hobby and similar information.

Here are a few extra tips for writing a lawyer resume:

  1. Do not hesitate to indicate the expected salary. A specialist who cannot assess his value, either does not understand the market, or has problems with self-esteem.
  2. Do not indicate a tight schedule. The schedule “strictly from 9:00 to 18:00,” as a rule, is inconvenient for the employer, especially for the consulting company. Attorney work sometimes requires inclusion outside of normal working hours, so, most likely, such a candidate will not be considered.
  3. Reduce the volume and simplify the language. No one has time to read long resumes that are overloaded with language. You need to be able to briefly and meaningfully tell about yourself.
  4. Check the details. The fonts must be the same and the formatting must be top-notch. No spelling or punctuation errors are acceptable. Many lawyers are perfectionists, so they react very sharply to typos and unclear formatting in documents, including resumes. Attention to detail is required, as well as scrupulousness, so these qualities should also be demonstrated in a resume.

How to Write an Effective Attorney Cover Letter

Writing a resume is only half the battle. You need to attach a cover letter to it in the body of the email. Without a cover letter, the email has a chance to go straight to the trash. A well-written cover letter is the best way to stand out from other job seekers. Here are three main rules:

  • Forget about mass mailing. Do not try to grasp the immensity and, by means of spam mailing, impersonally send your resume to a hundred places at the same time. You need to select a specific list of attorney companies where you would like to work, analyze their sites, their social media accounts and write individual letters.
  • Add meaning. “Consider my candidacy” letters mostly remain unopened. A letter is an opportunity to hook an employer, but most candidates do not use it. It is not uncommon for job seekers to retell their resume in a cover letter. This is not worth doing. It is important to state briefly and clearly who you are and why you want to work for this particular company in your cover letter.
  • Pay attention to the potential employer. In a cover letter, it is important for a candidate not only to tell about himself or herself, but also to show how he/she can be useful for the company. “Your tasks + my skills and experience = mutually beneficial cooperation” is the formula of such a letter.

Final Thoughts

In addition, the last piece of advice. Think long term. Have you received an offer but changed your mind? Refuse directly and openly. The most negative impression is left by people who simply disappear and do not answer calls. It is also important to respond appropriately to rejection. An employer whom you did not fit for some reason may, on occasion, recommend you to another company.

About the Author

Daniella Henderson

Daniella knows all ins and outs of the federal hiring process. She is excellent at job hunting strategies, starting from federal resume writing to the final stage of interview conduction.

Written by Enaa Mari

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