PWiC Seattle local chapter has continued working to finding ways to enable our community to connect, learn, and grow together. We host multiple events each year to empower our community to overcome the various barriers they have in their careers.
One such successful event, Resume, and LinkedIn — Workshop, was held on Saturday, July 6th. More than 65 people attended the event. It focused on creating an effective resume and provided an overview of the tech industry’s trends around personal branding through LinkedIn profiles. As a bonus, all attendees went home with free professional head shots by Nataliya Khan Photography.
PWiC Seattle Connect Lead, Muazma Zahid, who was the lead organizer for the event, welcomed and introduced the audience to PWiC Seattle and discussed its goals and vision for the local chapter. She also expressed her excitement about how the Seattle community has shown a great amount of support and appreciation for the work that PWiC is doing for the community. Resume and LinkedIn Workshop marks PWiC’s 6th event in Seattle.
After the initial introduction, Farah Ali and Huma Hamid shared their combined journey of the making of PWiC as a global force in advancing Pakistani women in tech across multiple global regions.
Presentations on Resume Writing
We invited four amazing women from the industry, who have multiple years of experience in their respective fields, to share their insight.
Ushma Mehta, Director, Human Resources at KenSci Inc., shared following advice on writing an effective resume:
- A resume should be like the trailer of a movie, not the entire movie. It should be packed with snippets of your strengths
- On your resume, display your achievements not just through effort but through quantifiable measures such as “improved performance by ‘x’ %”; don’t forget to proofread, spellcheck and keep some white space.
- A resume should also be tailored for the job description
- LinkedIn profiles, effective resumes, and personal branding are critical to finding your dream job. Add unique identifiers to your resume by adding strategic headlines, use a professional picture, use social media to show your skills and highlight your featured skills and endorsements.
Tanzeela Merchant — Recruiter, Robert Half-Wave Broadband, showed the employer’s perspective:
- Use keywords from the job description, 60% of resumes are discarded for not using certain keywords
- Hiring a professional resume writer to build your resume is not an uncommon practice
- Functional resumes are the best for newcomers, try to keep your resume one page.
- If you are returning back to work after a break and you have gaps in your resume, explain that in a cover letter to support your resume
- Network, a good word from an employee gives a positive boost to your resume
Hira Waqar — Technical Recruiter, Amazon, focused on the importance of LinkedIn profiles:
- When applying for tech jobs, it is advised to begin your LinkedIn Profile with the end goal first (i.e to get the job)
- Treat your LinkedIn profile as an online resume the world has access to
- Highlight your hard skills, show tech stack, your problem-solving skills but also don’t forget to show the soft skills. Those are equally important.
- Your LinkedIn profile should look polished, 4–5 bullet points per role is enough, use updated information
- Highlight your skills, program languages, publications, awards, etc.
Nataliya Khan — Founder at Nataliya Khan Photography, gave important insights about LinkedIn head-shots:
- Your profile picture can be one of the most important elements of your LinkedIn presence. Stand out from the crowd by displaying your best professional picture.
- Following things makes a good LinkedIn picture: head and shoulders should be visible, it should be up to date, eye contact, relaxed smiles, business casual outfit.
- Show your personality, natural and relaxed
- To increase your response and referral rates, invest in your profile picture. It’s your first chance to communicate that you are friendly, likable, and trustworthy.
“Profiles with professional head-shots receive 14 times more profile views / 36 times more likely to receive a message”
Resume & LinkedIn Review Session
After the presentations, a hands-on workshop session was conducted. The attendees got their resumes reviewed by a group of experienced professionals from the tech industry who provided personalized feedback on their resumes. The reviewers focused on the following areas:
- LinkedIn Profile, Lead by Adeel Hasan
- Recruiting from Hiring Manager’s Perspective (SDE, PM, etc.), Lead by Mian Khurrum
- Executive/Senior level + PM Resume, Lead by Farah Ali
- Data/Software Eng Resume, Lead by Muazma Zahid
- General Resume + Executive/Senior level, Lead by Hina Malik
- General Questions + Resume Review, Lead by speakers (Tanzeela/ Hira/ Nataliya/ Ushma
Young Volunteers of PWiC Seattle
PWiC is lucky to have a group of young and dedicated volunteers who helped in making our event successful. A special thanks to Alizeh Zaidi, Saif Zaidi, Maahum Jahangir, Zoya, Nadiah Sarfraz, Sahar Abid, Javeria Baloch, Sonya Hamid, Sulaimaan Khurrum, Hasan Abid for their tremendous support.
Voice of America (Urdu Service)
The Voice of America Urdu Service team led by Nadeem Yaqub, traveled to Seattle from Washington D.C to cover a story on PWiC in its efforts to showcase Pakistani women in the tech and PWiC’s efforts to build a global community. It captured the event highlights and interviewed several key members of PWiC team and volunteers. Voice of America will be releasing the story in the upcoming weeks, stay tuned to hear more.
Partners and Sponsors
Events Photography by Sumera Amber
Head-shots By Nataliya Khan Photography
Useful References for Building Resumes
Thank you for reading!
About the Author
Aisha Salman is a Program Manager at Eastside Emergency Physicians (Swedish) and PWiC Seattle Content & Blog Lead. She works with a dynamic team of healthcare providers who are focused on providing extraordinary care to patients with extraordinary caring. Outside of work, Aisha is a volunteer by heart. She gives her time to The Citizens Foundation (TCF), TCF builds schools in underprivileged areas of Pakistan. This year her focus was to start TCF youth group which she successfully accomplished. She also volunteers at the free health clinic at the local mosque, is an active member of PTSA, is involved in many cultural events, from planting trees at Marymoor park to homeless meal programs; she has tried many things and loved them all. She believes in building a beautiful community around us, so we never feel lonely. You can connect with Aisha at LinkedIn.