Recruiters and hiring managers are skimmers. They look for keywords in your resume that resonate with them and the position they are hiring for. If they see something they don’t like, your resume will be thrown out without thinking twice. Here are some expert tips to make sure that doesn’t happen to your resume.
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1. Branding Statement
The top third of your resume must properly allure the reader and make him/her to want to continue on reading. A sure way to accentuate the top third of your resume is to have a branding statement that incorporates your career trajectory and industry, as well as core areas of focus. An example of this would be a sales and marketing executive who focuses on client management, business development, and operations leadership. Those areas should formulate the branding of the resume and throughout the resume, the reader should see concrete examples of how those three areas are established as being the strongest for the candidate.
2. Professional Summary
Resumes should include a professional summary, not an objective. It is the objective of the candidate to find a job, but the professional summary’s purpose is to accentuate and highlight some of the intricate skills and attributes of the candidate. The professional summary is similar to an appetizer for a big meal. It provides the reader with an introduction to the main course (the career progression and experience), and is set to elicit the reader to want to continue on reading. Items that are ideal for a professional summary include academic credentials (example, you have an MBA), years of experience, awards, key areas of focus in the industry, as well as leadership or relationship building attributes.
3. Keyword-Rich Content
Resumes have become strategic marketing documents that require focus on core skills and keywords. Additionally, since the majority of companies utilize Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) to weed out the qualified from the unqualified candidates, it is even more important for job candidates to focus their resume on incorporating specific keywords into their resume. Not sure what keywords matter for your resume? Look to the job posting and highlight the important keywords. Match those keywords within your resume. However, be careful to avoid keyword stuffing, which consists of just throwing in as many keywords as possible including ones that may not match your own personal skill set.
4. Results Over Job Functions
With an average of six seconds spent on reviewing a resume and hundreds of resumes submitted for a particular position, job candidates must heed to that competition and distinguish themselves. A great way to do so is by emphasizing results within the resume as opposed to a laundry list of job functions. Saying you “drove growth and exceeded sales,” without providing a measurable number or percentage makes it impossible for the hiring manager or recruiter to see your value.
Consider these four top expert tips when crafting your resume to avoid the trash pile and enter the “yes” pile.
About the author
Wendi Weiner, creatively known as The Writing Guru, is a Nationally Certified Resume Writer (NCRW) and Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW) with over 15 years of expertise in resume writing, essay writing, and professional editing. Visit her website here.
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by a CAREEREALISM-approved expert. You can learn more about expert posts here.
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