A job title is often used in the search criteria by job seekers and employers. But when a job title on your resume does not appropriately describe what you do, it can mean a lost opportunity.
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Employers take only a couple of seconds to skim a resume, and they do not necessarily read further into it beyond job titles on initial review. Titles may run from Account Executive to Account Manager, or Junior Analyst to Senior Analyst. It all provides some general insight on a candidate’s level of experience in a particular field.
So, what are you to do when the job title you hold does not exactly reflect your level of experience or the responsibilities you have with the position? For instance, say you currently hold the title of “Office Manager,” but 50% of your time is focused on accounting functions, which happens to be the job you are seeking. How can you reflect on your resume upfront that you have extensive accounting experience on the job?
There are ways to combat the matter of vague job titles on the resume.
Augment the job title with what’s realistic and fair.
You should state your official title and, on the same line, add a second title. For example, state: Office Manager/Senior Accountant and in the descriptive area indicate your job duties:
Oversee office functions for busy firm and additionally function as Senior Accountant processing all Accounts Payable and Accounts Receivable invoices and payments.
Similarly, if you are an Administrative Assistant in the Marketing Department, you can show a title of Administrative Assistant/Marketing Coordinator.
Add information to the title.
If you are uncomfortable with replacing your job title with what’s realistic and fair, then you can always add additional information next to the title in parentheses. For example, Accounting Manager (Controller). Employers will be much less likely to dismiss your resume as unqualified if you use this strategy than if you used vague job titles that do not reflect the same field of work.
Remember that employers may receive more applicants for job openings than they can go through. Ensure your resume is in the best possible shape and that it offers information upfront – like relevant and appropriate job titles – on why you qualify for the job.
This post was originally published at an earlier date.
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