Resumes remain the basic starting point for your job search.
While there are new ways to get your information to prospective employers — a LinkedIn profile, a personal blog, your Facebook page, networking events, etc. — the resume still is a necessity. Employers use resumes to narrow the list of candidates they call in for an interview. Your resume is often the ticket into the interview. Use it to show why you are the best candidate for the job.
Showcase Your Skills
Start your resume off strong with a clear objective that highlights your main qualifications for the position. Then, for every job you’ve held, list in a concise manner:
- The company name and time period you worked there
- Job title
- Your primary skills, duties and responsibilities, using key words from the job posting
- Additional skills and responsibilities you brought to the job
- Accomplishments: New procedures you introduced, ways you improved productivity and/or reduced costs — using results and numbers when possible
- Any additional qualifications and technical skills relevant to the job opening
Pay Attention to Details
Keep in mind that employers are scanning resumes for specific criteria. Create your resume with the details they want to see:
- Specific skills for a specific job. Does your resume clearly indicate that you are qualified?
- Specific levels of work experience. Make it easy for employers to see you have what they need by listing experience in terms of number of years.
- Reliability. Make it easy for employers to see your work history is consistent by listing dates of employment at each company.
- Leadership and initiative. Show you’ve had a desire to grow in each of your jobs by listing leadership roles, examples of your initiative, and times when you trained others.
Commit It to Memory
Employers will use your resume as part of the basis for your interview. Review your resume in advance and be prepared to discuss all of the qualifications, skills and work experience you have listed.