In Australia, a typical legal secretary can expect annual earnings between $34,577 and $67,346. As well as competing for new roles, your resume can help you improve your chances of securing a job at the higher end of that pay range. Find out how your resume can sink or seal a deal with a potential employer by avoiding the four following common resume mistakes.
Limited evidence of advanced communication skills
Legal secretaries must deal with a diverse group of people, and it's vital that you can demonstrate the right sort of communication skills at every level. As such, your resume must show evidenced examples of the different stakeholders you have worked with. Identify key groups of people by job type and seniority. If necessary, explain why a particular stakeholder was difficult to work with, and describe how you overcame the challenge.
Grammar and typing mistakes
Recruiters and prospective employers frown on grammar mistakes on anybody's resume, but these mistakes can seriously limit the prospects for a legal secretary. Law secretaries must prepare complex legal documents that are word-perfect and free from any mistakes or inaccuracies. As such, a recruiter will, quite rightly, often just discard a resume from a legal secretary that has any errors.
Not enough detail about relevant qualifications
Legal secretaries can choose from a range of qualification to boost their expertise. For example, the BSB42215 Certificate in Legal Services is a nationally recognised qualification that helps you learn how to produce legal documents and research relevant information. Traineeships in legal administration are also popular with budding legal secretaries.
Make sure you include all the details relevant to the qualification, including the title, where you studied, when you studied and the outcome. These details can show your dedication to this career path, as well as demonstrate that you have the technical knowledge to do the job properly.
Failure to explain gaps in employment history
There are plenty of reasons why some people take a break from the legal profession. You may decide to have children, or you may want to temporarily pursue other activities. These career gaps don't need to put off a recruiter, but you need to explain the details on your resume.
Don't leave a gap in your employment history without an explanation. Give brief details for the reason for the gap, and make sure your resume explains what you are doing consistently from education through to the current date. You may think that a recruiter will ask you about this during an interview anyway, but he or she may not even decide to invite you to the next stage if anything about your resume is unclear.
There are good career opportunities for legal secretaries in Australia, but competition is high, so you'll need a good resume. Talk to a recruitment agency for more information and advice.