Every time we solicit resumes for job searches, I am totally amazed by the poor quality and aimless rambling that goes on. The last week, I received 200 resumes, and only one told me where and when to call. No flair for the unusual, all resumes looked alike. In the end, we asked people to view our website to see if this is a company that would interest them. Out of 200 applicants, only one looked at the website. After spending $2000 in ad costs, I had to file them in the circular file. Not a single applicant had the initiative to call me and try to beat the crowd.
My estimate is that there are a sorry bunch of crap out there looking to work (or not to work for that matter).
If you seriously want to get hired, you must research the company to see how you would fit into the scheme of things. The Internet is a wonderful way to conduct your investigation. Then, have your wife or best friend review your qualifications to honestly tell you what they think. Then sit down, and if there are a couple of creative molecules in your head, design a resume that will catch the eye of the HR department. Try to be creative. If you are a good looking guy or girl, include a photo. Don't let anyone tell you that looks don't count… they do! Unless you are a real ugger, you can overcome a less than desirable appearance, just ask Janet Reno or Phyliss Diller.
In America, every decent corporation is looking for people with incentive, a work ethic, and high energy. They must be quick learners and adequate problem solvers. Unfortunately, most colleges are diametrically opposed to educating students to meet the needs of the workplace. Use empathy, figure out what they would like and then present yourself accordingly. If after the 10th resume you send out, you don't at least get a phone call, send me a copy of your resume and I will tell you what I think. Be prepared for a brutally frank analysis. Of course, there will be no charge for my advice.
Sneak up to the company if possible, and figure out what the dress code is. They, when you go for the interview, you will have a sense of how to dress. Clothes do make the man, so dress appropriately.