Writing a resume is not easy. It gives a hiring manager a sneak peek at who you are professionally, but the operative word here is peek. What partly makes putting a resume together so challenging is that you have to decide on the most useful information for selling yourself. Essentially, you have to select and then effectively present the cream of the crop of your accomplishments. After all, you have just six seconds to make an impression (that’s the amount of time recruiters typically spend on a resume before determining whether an applicant is a good fit or not). Here are five ways you can make those six seconds count.
You have just six seconds to make an impression
Situation 1: You were with a single company for a long time but were promoted several times during your years there. However, most of your jobs at the company had the same titles.
Solution 1: Separate and elaborate on your positions to show that you have a history of progressively responsible experience. Be sure to include the dates you worked for the company along with the dates you held specific positions at the company. Also, include the appropriate department title beside each job position. This will further emphasize your ability to move into brand new challenges.
Situation 2: You worked in a couple of short-term job positions in the past that do not seem to be relevant to your current career goal, and you’re not sure how to handle them on your resume.
Solution 2: Ask yourself a couple of questions. First: Are these job positions dated? Second: Do they support your career goal now? If the answers to these questions are no, it’s best to leave them off.
Situation 3: You don’t know where to begin when it comes to writing a cover letter that works well with your resume.
Solution 3: Do you have a story that showcases your experience, accomplishments, values, and goals? Consider beginning your cover letter with this story. The story shows a hiring manager something new about you that he/she did not see in the resume, and it can be extremely effective for creating a brand for yourself.
Situation 4: It may not be clear to an employer what position you are seeking based on your resume.
Solution 4: Be sure to include a profile at the top of your resume that stresses your expertise, along with a section of core skills and key words that make it clear to a prospective employer what your job target is.
Situation 5: The responsibilities and accomplishments you list on your resume seem mundane.
Solution 5: For every job position on your resume, keep your accomplishments separate from the job description. The job description can be written in paragraph form, but try to use bullet points to highlight your diverse accomplishments. Don’t overuse bullet points, though, as this will end up making your accomplishments seem virtually non-existent.
Writing a resume is not easy
What You Can Do:
Solicit the help of a professional resume writer. A professional resume writer will be your second pair of eyes and hands: He/she can advise you on how to revamp your resume to better showcase your skills and then create a winning resume for you. Be sure to first send your resume writer a few job positions to which you would be interested in applying; this will increase your chances of getting a resume that fully aligns with your specific job-search goals.