You find yourself in the job market and in need of a resume update. Your resume is your biography, inclusive of your employment history, skills, education, certifications and accomplishments. It is your first impression to a prospective employer, your 30 second commercial about yourself.
When a recruiter is reviewing resumes, they are essentially looking for one resume to stand out among the others. Therefore, they are looking for an easy-to-read, concise and well-written resume containing the experience and education to match the position they are hiring for.
What to Highlight on Your Resume
- Awards and accomplishments
- Specific skills
Types of Resumes
There are four types of resumes. You will need to decide which one works best for the position you are applying to.
Chronological: This resume type is the most common and recommended for those with a solid job history. Employment is listed in chronological order with your most recent employment first.
Functional: This resume type lists your skills and abilities that are most relevant to the position you are applying to. You start with the most relevant first and end with the least relevant. This type of resume works best if there are gaps in employment and allows recruiters and hiring managers to identify the top skills and abilities they are looking for quickly.
Combination: This type of resume combines the chronological and functional, starting with a summary of your skills and abilities and followed by a reverse chronological listing of your past employment. This type of resume works best if you are interested in a position with skills that may have been used previously in your career.
Targeted: This type of resume is the most time consuming and takes the most thought. A targeted resume is customized to the specific position you are applying to. Skills, abilities and education speak directly to the specific position.
Important Tips to Capture Your Audience
Your resume should reflect the position and the industry you are applying to. Tailor your objective to the position for which you are applying. Similar to an interview, boast about your accomplishments that would transfer to that position.
After proofreading your resume, ask a friend or coworker to give your resume another look over. Ask for candid feedback and be prepared to make edits! What makes sense to you may not make sense to the outside eye. Ask them to specifically look for the common mistakes that are listed below.
- Grammatical errors
- Inconsistent formatting
- Repeating job duties for multiple positions
- Omitting dates of employment
- The use of too many acronyms
- Resume is too long
- Resume is not up-to-date
It is always a good idea to update your resume annually. Even if you do not foresee yourself in the job market, you never know when that perfect position grabs your attention. Update your resume as you achieve an award, learn a new skill set or take on additional responsibilities in your current job.
If you are struggling with putting together your resume, there are writing services that can assist you. There are paid resume writers and some unemployment offices that may offer this service free of charge.
Always remember, your resume = your commercial!
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