Tips to Make Your Resume Stand Out
If you’re currently out of work due to the COVID-19 pandemic and if you haven’t had to look for work for a few years, the type of resume you used before may not work nearly as well today.
After all, technology has changed considerably in even just the last five years. Did you ever do a lot of video conference meetings in 2015? What about using a real time-voice translator when you were on a sales trip to a foreign country? And let’s just skip over the massive amount of automation tools that have popped up in the workplace in the last half decade.
Your resume needs to reflect this increase in technology
Here’s what we mean by that:
Technology has made all work more complex. More and more employers expect job candidates to have even the most basic of tech skills (such as word processing, email and database management skills, as rudimentary examples). More professional-level jobs often require higher-level technology skills, such as creating spreadsheets, presentations, data analytics, even some coding, depending on the industry.
Your resume therefore needs to reflect these technical skills. It should showcase them while also – and this is just as important – highlighting your on-the-job accomplishments, experience and education.
And let’s not forget the primary function of a resume: to show how you can solve an employer’s problems
Companies hire people basically for just one reason: they have problems they need solved.
- Data they need analyzed.
- Overdue bills they need to collect.
- Loan requests they need to review.
- Employee benefits they need to manage.
- Prospects they need made into customers.
- And so on.
A resume’s job is to show employers how you can help them fix those problems. Always keep that in mind as you create your resume.
An important note to also remember: your resume doesn’t get you a job; it gets you an interview
Your resume exists to pique a recruiter’s or hiring manager’s interest. It doesn’t tell your life story, your career goals, your income needs. It serves to only catch someone’s attention.
It is, basically, a sales document.
So you want to catch readers’ interest from the get-go by showcasing how you can solve their problems. You do so by providing a statement that describes your skills and experience in ways that hint at how you will help them.
Data analyst with more than 7 years of experience in data analysis strategies and processes. Particularly skilled in data strategy, client data management and visualization. Bachelor’s degree in computer science; master’s in information systems.
Human resource manager with 5-plus years HR experience, 3 of them in HR management positions. SHRM-SCP certified; HRIS certification. Team leadership experience in business planning, resource allocation and diplomatic problem resolution.
Resume do’s and don’ts
- Format the document in different categories, such as Summary, Professional Experience, Education & Certifications, and Associations.
- Use a summary statement as discussed above; don’t give an “objective” statement. (It’s not about what you want; it’s what they need.)
- List your applicable skills next. Format them in table form.
- Very important: For skills the description says are required or wanted (that you have), be sure to include them exactly as written in the description. Chances are much better that your resume will be read by screening technology and you don’t want the bot to skip over you.
- List your professional experience for the last 10 years. More isn’t really needed.
- Do not include your physical attributes on your resume; headshot, height/weight, etc. should not be included
- Name each company at which you worked. Give its industry and location (city and state only)
- Write out anywhere from 5-8 bullet points describing your role
- Make sure you highlight measurable accomplishments for each position. How many clients did you bring on? How many written goals did you meet (or exceed)? How much money did you save? How much time did you save on a project? How much were you under budget on a big project? And so on.
- Action verbs are your friend: sold, closed, started, organized, established, launched, hired, discovered, etc.
- Your education, certifications and association memberships should be listed last. However, if you are just out of college, education/certification goes first.
- Keeping your resume to one page is no longer a thing, so keep it within a reasonable length with the necessary information
- Print on white or off-white printer-type paper in a basic 11-point font.
Finally, don’t lie. Don’t fudge. Don’t stretch the truth. Much of our lives are online now and our histories are verified easily. Don’t risk being caught. You can be fired for lying on a resume.
Whether you’re currently out of work or looking for a better position, check out our current opportunities and, if one or more pique your interest, click the “Apply Now” button. If nothing fits the bill for you now, please check our Find Jobs page regularly for new positions. Our clients continuously send us new contract, contract-to-hire and direct-hire opportunities.