Finding a job can be tough – but not so tough when you have a good resume. A good resume will represent the best of you. It will take all the experience you’ve done and combine it in a perfect blend of you. When employers see your resume, it will stand out and showcase your best accomplishments and the fine work you’ve done – whether it be graduating, working or any other accomplishments on your belt. You can handcraft and fine tune your resume so it can stand out amongst other applicants.
The key is, to fine tune your resume to showcase you in the best light. I’ve listed a few tips below to help you out!
1. Quality, not Quantity
Focus on what’s important to the position. Yes, this means you will have a new version of your resume for each position you apply for. My best advice would be to research, study and understand what the position entails and what is required for it. Once you do this, you’ll have a good understanding of what keywords and most relevant positions are necessary to mention within your resume. This can easily mean mentioning a couple of your responsibilities that mirror what the position is looking for that you may not have previously included. Don’t mention positions that have no relation to the position being applied for. It will only distract the employer from what traits they are looking for. And always remember, keep to the truth in your skills and experience. If you aren’t a developer, do not make the mistake of listing that in it. Most people think about adding “fluff” to their resume will help but, in fact, it will only hurt you more. Lastly, keep your resume length to 1-page maximum. If an employer has to sort through more than 1 page of your resume, they will most likely toss it.
2. Adapt Your Resume to Your Target Audience
As I touched on before, prior sending your resume to any company – make sure you research the job enough to understand what is required for the position and the company. Always tailor your resume, including job titles and descriptions to the job you are applying for. The best way to do this is to create a master resume, which will list your job experience, education, and skills. As you start researching the specific job that you want to apply for – customize your resume to showcase the priorities that emphasize this position.
3. List in Reverse Chronological Order
List your present, or most recent job, first, and then work backwards. State the complete name of the company you have worked for, and how long you were there–month and year. Then list the position you held and your accomplishments.
4. Use Action Verbs to show Results
When you are describing your relevant work experience – make sure you start with strong action verbs that best describe your accomplishments, achievements, and responsibilities and end with the resulting action. For example, structure your experience points with the most impressive and important responsibilities and end with the result of that responsibility. Some examples may include:
Exceeded annual sales by 10%
Was responsible for driving sales within my department
Ideally, it is important for employers to see the impact you’ve created. This will give them an understanding of what an outstanding candidate you are.
5. Keep it Consistent
Make sure that the formatting is consistent throughout. Have clear titles or headings and make it easy for an employer to navigate through your resume. Use bullet points instead of paragraphs for your descriptions. This will make it easier to read when an employer has only a few seconds to glance over your resume. You can also use oversized titles and subtitles to highlight information that you want the recruiter to immediately see
6. Proofread, Proofread, Proofread
Before sending your resume anywhere – always have another pair of eyes look at it. This can be a friend, family member or a trusted colleague to take a look at and make sure everything sounds right and there are no spelling errors. Many hiring managers will immediately toss a resume upon catching even the slightest mistake on a resume. So, it would be wise to read it over from an employer’s perspective.
7. Do not submit a CV when asked for a resume
When job positions require resumes – make sure to only submit resumes and not a CV (Curriculum Vitæ). A CV is an in-depth document about 2 or more pages containing high levels of detail for accomplishments.
Often hiring managers don’t have much time to really look deep into a candidate’s resume. So it would be best to put forth a good resume and submit so they can easily navigate through it and find what they need. Whereas a CV would list far too much, the resume would provide exactly what the employer would be looking for such as achievements, skills, and relevant positions.
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