I thought I would share some tips and tricks for ‘pimping out’ your resume. I thought I’d go through a number of topics to help you improve your resume. Let’s get started! There’s a lot here so make sure you take notes or save the links!
Stress Your Talents…Make Sure It’s Not Just One!
Let’s start at the beginning. If you want a fantastic resume you should really have something fantastic to put on it. A recent article from Lifehacker titled “If You Want a Good Job, You Need More Than One Talent” provides some great tips and foresight into getting a leg up on your next job. They stress that companys are looking for varied, multi-talented new employee’s. If you think about it, they’re right. With the unemployment rates, employers are looking for individuals with a variety of skills, not just a core skill.
Top 10 Most Used ‘Professional’ Words In 2012!
Last year LinkedIn posted the “Top 10 Overused Professional Buzzwords 2012 [INFOGRAPHIC].” It’s pretty funny. You might want to think of taking some out if you use an abundance of them. They include Creative, Organizational, Effective, Motivated, Extensive Experience, Track Record, Innovative, Responsible, Analytical and Problem Solving.
Leave Old Job Descriptions Off Your Resume!
I know it may sound weird, but Mashable actually has a better idea in their article “4 Things to Leave Off Your Resume.” Mashable suggests putting your accomplishments under your ‘Experience Section’ rather then a job description. Totally makes sense too. Why would you tell someone what you did when you can tell them what you’ve accomplished!
Use Hobbies In Your ‘Skills’ Section!
In the article titled “Include Personal Projects On Resumes When You’re Just Starting Out” Lifehacker reminds ‘us’ that the ‘Skills’ section of your resume isn’t just for work-related stuff…especially when you’re starting out with your first (or second) resume. If you can relate some outside skill you have to your job then you’ll help your chances. It also relates to the whole idea of ‘stressing your multi-talents.’
Target The Job You’re Applying For!
Another Lifehacker article titled “How to Generate More Interviews with Your Resume” highlights some of the things you can do to catch the eye of your potential employer. Not many people realize this, but you shouldn’t just have one resume you send out to all your potential employers. Each one should be tailored to each job you’re applying for. The three important ones are:
- Insert the EXACT TITLE of the position you’re applying for right at the start of the resume
- Develop an opening paragraph that highlights why you’d be a great fit
- Create a “Core Competencies” section
30 Resume & Cover Letter Tips!
- Never use a pre-defined resume template. Instead, make your own exceptional template for your resume that is attractive and easy to edit
- Use font size of 10-12 points and in Ariel, Verdana or Times New Roman for easier reading
- Write your name in bold, text size should be larger than the body text of the resume
- Your mailing address, telephone number and e-mail address should not be larger or in bold
- Mention your two word name for easier name recognition. You may eliminate your middle or initial name from your resume
Don’t Forget About ‘Applicant Tracking Systems’
Did you know that many employers (or services) actually run your resume through a key-word search before they even think about looking at your resume? An article titled “2013 Resumes: Tips You Need To Know To Maximize Yours!” from Commpro details what you should be doing with your online submitted resume to ensure it actually gets into someone’s hands! Here’s the section on automated tracking systems:
- All applicant tracking systems work basically the same. They use a ‘parser’ to read the information in your resume.
- The parser will read your information vs. the information it has been given by the company. In most cases, keywords pulled from the job description will be used. Unfortunately you don’t know the keywords or the parameters, they have been given. What this means is the your resume submission must use the exact terminology or you risk the parser not forwarding your resume.
- Yes, you read that correctly. Just because you submitted your resume and received notification that it was accepted, it doesn’t mean it will reach the hiring manager or HR. Unfortunately, unqualified candidates answer job ads so the applicant tracking system helps to sort resumes.
- It is important that you customize your resume to each job description.
- Your resume is scored for relevancy. Relevancy is based on the correlating matches between your resume and the job description’s keyword.
- You must also read the disclaimers/information on the web site. You need to know how long a company keeps your resume, can you update it and can you apply for different positions or does one resume submission cover other jobs as they become available.
- If you have submitted a resume online, a recruiter cannot resubmit it.
Key Words Are…KEY!
There’s been a bit of redundancy when it comes to keywords in your resume, but I’d take that as a ‘super advisement’ rather than annoying. In an article from Aol Jobs, “In 2013, we will see more HR professionals relying on platform solution providers to access data quickly in order to make business decisions in real time.”
Ensure Your Resume Will Get Read
TheDailyMuse has an article titled “3 Things That Will Get Your Resume Thrown in the Trash” in which they discuss the importance of details! I’m usually the worst at this and I’m sure you can probably find a dozen grammatical and spelling errors all over this post. When it comes to your resume you might just want to take a 4th look at it. “When it comes to your resume, the devil is quite often in the details. Recruiters get annoyed by small things that you may not think of— like to whom you’ve addressed the cover letter (it should be the recruiter’s name, not “sir,” “madam,” or “to whom it may concern”).”
“Get” The Company
In the same article by TheDailyMuse (see, like, right above) they also stress applicants understanding ‘the culture’ of the business they’re applying for. From Joanna Thomas in the article, “It’s of utmost importance to recruiters to find a candidate who’s a “cultural fit as well as a skill set fit.””
If this article is to teach you anything, it’s that you can always improve your resume. To help you get started you can take a look at these Resume Templates provided by Monster.com. Good hunting! Next week, we’ll go over some interviewing tips!