Even in the age of technology the fundamental for every job search remains the same, “The Resumé”; yet for nearly everyone, it is just another document often antediluvian and forgotten until its needed for a job hunt. A well-written resumé is important in differentiating you from your competition while ensuring that if it is parsed via software, it will pass the parsing keyword algorithms, furthermore be seen by the hiring authority.
It is of utmost importance to regularly update and keeping the document “live” and not having to scatter and search for dates and information at the last moment, if you haven’t updated your resumé in several years don’t try to undertake it all at once: set a reoccurring calendar reminder once a week for 10-15 minutes and work on one aspect of the resumé, same goes for the following week until you are finished; remember, with any masterpiece, it takes time. Once satisfied, set a biannual time to update and reevaluate content and the structure of your resumé … your career does depend on it.
Convey A Story – Get The Job
It is very important that your resumé tells a chronological story of your career, education, and accomplishments with your most recent position first, especially if you have a substantial career history; it’s always shocking to look at the first job on the resumé, see the company name, then skim to the right and see a date 10 plus years ago; one of my first thought always is, “ Holy cow, what has this person been doing for the past 10 years?” This thought is intensified when the resumé is multiple pages and requires flipping 2 or 3 pages to view the most recent employment. Lead with the most relevant information on your resumé first; start with your current job. Jam-pack your career history with tangible facts, e.g., (As VP of Sales & Marketing your marketing campaign brought in a profit of 2 million) be sure to include information and feel free to brag, if you don’t who’s going to?
Spelling, Spelling, Grammar, and Oh, did I say, “Spelling!!”
It seems like common sense to spell check a document before sending it, in particular, a document that determines whether or not you are hired, your salary, and even if you receive that initial interview. But surprisingly, everyday resumé are sent with multiple spelling errors, poor grammar, and just plain ugly mistakes. This can be easily avoided, adding that extra little shine… by running the spell check on the document in the word processor or even better, utilize one of many free online spelling and grammar checkers such as, www.paperrater.com, or app.grammarly.com to obtain a comprehensive spelling and grammar check, which even includes sentence structure, grammar, writing style ratings. Spice up your sentences, use a thesaurus and don’t be afraid of synonym or two; a resumé with a plethora of words is more likely to make a keyword hit when being parsed. It is also beneficial to spell out your acronyms, which adds that extra chance of making a keyword hit.
Article originally appeared on LinkedIn.com
Author – Erik Elliott