The resume is a funny thing. Almost everyone has one or needs one. It doesn’t matter if you are a forklift driver, salesperson or lawyer; chances are you have a resume. In some ways, a resume puts everyone on an equal playing field – almost every employer will require a resume or resume-like document and it is what most people will base their decision for an interview or not. So, that’s kind of the good news. We all start out equal.
Now for the bad news.
Since everyone has to submit a resume and there is a lot of competition for jobs, your resume has to stand out. And, that’s not always easy. Especially when you consider that most resumes are initially read and screened by a computer, or if you’re lucky enough to have a recruiter read it – you’ll get about 6 seconds. That’s a lot of pressure on one little document. Here is Part 1 of our top 10 tips to help give your resume a boost:
- Provide accurate contact information and links. The top of your resume should list your current address, email and phone number. If you have a LinkedIn profile, career-related website or other web profile, include those links in the contact section as well.
- Remove your objective. Objective statements are outdated. Instead, lead off your resume with a strong statement of where you’ve been and where you are going. Create a summary that demonstrates value, includes relevant keywords and provides proof of why you are the best candidate for the job.
- Let numbers tell the story. Employers want to know you have had success and they want to see evidence. Load up your resume with numbers and metrics that quantify your results. Include things like dollars saved, percentages increased or decreased, number of people trained, etc.
- Customize your resume. One resume does not fit all jobs. Tailor your resume to the job at hand. Make sure you cover all the job qualifications. Match the job requirements with your proven work experience and examples.
- Use keywords. Find and use keywords that apply to the job you want. Make sure you are using the same words as the employer. Speak their language. Avoid words that don’t prove anything.
Watch the next Career Coach blog post for Part 2 of the list. For more resume tips, check out the replay of Manpower’s latest Career Success webinar: Keep Your Resume Out of the Trash: 10 Tips for Today’s Resume.