Even in a digital world, a quality resume is crucial for your job search—your resume decides whether or not you get called in for an interview. Making your resume stand out in a crowded job market will catch the eye of the hiring manager and make sure your resume gets you through the front door for an interview and not stuck in a bottomless pile with all of the other applicants.
6 Innovative Ideas to Make Your
Resume Stand Out from the Competition.
- Be Brief.
Don’t let your resume look like an online dating profile. Your personal details should be limited to your name, e-mail, and website if you have one. The average time a recruiter takes to glance over your resume in their initial read through is four to seven seconds. Additional information like your residential address, GPA, marital status, etc., clutters the page and makes it harder for them to find the information they’re really looking for. Brevity is much appreciated and will make your resume more aesthetically pleasing.
- Begin with a Professional Summary.
Rather than starting your resume with an objective statement, open with a professional summary, telling the employer what you’ll bring to the company. State your qualifications and experience in terms of the organization’s needs and values.
- Only Include Relevant Employment History.
Many applicants make the mistake of giving a reverse chronological laundry list of every job they’ve ever worked. Again, this just hides the important information. A recruiter doesn’t need (or care) to know that you served shakes at the local diner in high school. Make your resume stand out by only including job experience that is relevant to the position at hand. Making your resume highly relevant will catch the eye of the reviewer.
- Use Keywords, but Don’t Overdo it.
Due to the volume of resumes they receive, many recruiters use software to do an initial weed out of resumes. The software scans for key words related to the job description they’ve posted. Therefore, it’s important to drop in a few industry buzzwords and words such as “accomplished”, “team player”, and “managed” that will make sure the software flags your resume as a good fit. However, you don’t want to include so many of these keywords that when the recruiter does read it, they see straight through it as fluff.
- Re-Order Your Skill Set.
The three things the prospective employer cares about are your skill set, what you are good at, and what you can offer the company. Make sure your skills section lists your skills in order of importance to the job you’re applying for. These are the skills they list in the job description.
- Be You.
Employers should be able to figure out what type of person you are, just by looking at your resume. To really stand out, you need your resume to show, rather than tell this information. Give details about volunteer work you’ve done, blogs you’ve written, or events that you’ve organized. This gives the employer a taste of your interests other than work.
After you’re done re-working your resume, show it to a friend or mentor to get a second opinion. They’ll be able to give you feedback and catch any errors you may have overlooked. Crafting the perfect resume takes time and effort, but when done correctly will land you the interview you wanted.
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