I’m not sure who thought it was a great idea to tell job seekers that replicating a career summary or objective statement from a resume sample they saw on the Internet on their resume was a sound job searching practice. But whoever did that should be banned from providing career advice to job seekers.
I can assure you (and I’m speaking as a former HR manager) that no one wants to read the same resume summary over and over again. Not only do they not want to read the same objective statement and the same worn out phrases on resumes, but how are they supposed to differentiate between you and another candidate if your resumes are identical?
I hope you are beginning to see the value you gain from positioning yourself effectively—the value in exploring and then promoting your individuality and uniqueness on your resume. Writing a resume that an employer will actually want to read is the foundation of a successful job search. Here are five tips to help you bring out your individuality on your resume:
1. Make A Connection Between Your Experience & Their Needs
I’m not sure there is a better way to communicate your fit for the position than to address how your career experience and expertise meet the needs of the organization. Think about what their needs might be, and then make the connection between your experience and how you can meet their needs. This will cause the employer to have confidence that you’re a great candidate.
2. Place Relevant Information First
It’s important to be purposeful and strategic in how you write—and structure—your resume. Resume writers don’t just throw words onto a piece of paper in any random order and then simply hope something sticks. No, there’s a reason why they place certain information on your resume—and maybe even more importantly is WHERE they place that information. The most relevant information should come first. It should be at the top of your resume, and should be the first bullet point under each section.
3. Save Them Valuable Time
Save the recruiter or hiring manager time by not making them go searching for what they need. They’ll be looking for job titles, dates of employment, and major accomplishments. They’ll also be looking for important keywords to ensure you have the required skills for the position.
Put this information at the top of the resume, and make job titles and employment dates easy to find. This helps them to more quickly and easily go through their mental checklist during that initial six-second resume scan so they can then decide to read your resume further.
4. Give Them More
Once you’ve passed the initial six-second scan, the hiring manager will want to go back and give your resume a more thorough reading to ensure you have the necessary skills and experience for the position. This is where details are critical. Expound further on your experience, contributions, and accomplishments. Use facts and figures to sell the value you can offer the employer and to get their attention.
5. If You’ve Seen It Elsewhere – RUN!
Avoid the familiar at all costs. If you’ve seen it on a resume sample site, so have thousands of other people. Don’t copy it and include it on your resume. Sure, you can use it as inspiration to write something unique pertaining to yourself, but a word-for-word reproduction of what you’ve seen on someone else’s resume is a poor advertisement of your unique talents and capabilities. Be true to who you are and what you bring to the table.
If inspiration is lacking and you’re not sure how to frame up your experience in a brand-driven and compelling way, we understand. It’s not always easy to write about yourself—and that’s where our expertise comes in. Read more about our resume writing services and our 99.996% interview-winning success rate here.
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