If you’re among the millions of Americans who have found themselves without work during this unprecedented time, now could be an opportunity to reinvent yourself. As you begin a job search in what will probably be a highly-competitive market, a critical part of this process will be updating your resume. With this in mind, we’ve put together three great ways to help you craft a quality resume.
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1. Create Multiple Versions
If you’re seeking multiple types of jobs at once, there’s no one-size-fits-all story. You need to rearrange, omit, and spin relevant histories and talents based on the job requirements.
Start with the job category. Include relevant information about your past positions based on the type of job you’re applying for. End with skills that make you look like a good fit for the job. Repeat this process with other versions of your resume, and you’ll have an arsenal of helpful templates from which to draw for future applications.
2. Include Relevant Keywords
Hiring managers often rely on software that scans resume Word documents or PDFs and filters for applicable terms you may have included in your resume. When you upload your resume to a website, it may be scanned for keywords, too, placing your name in a “yes” or “no” list of candidates.
Remember that you’re more likely to get an interview if you use a resume that is better tailored to the job to which you’re applying. As you tell your story, be sure to include words that are specific to your prospective position. Start with the most applicable version of your resume from Step 1, and try to mirror the language used in the job description. For example, if you’ve used specific software that the job may require, make sure to mention it.
3. The Resume Leads to the Interview
Keep in mind that resumes are just one of the first steps on the path toward getting your next job. That path leads toward another important stop: the interview.
While you mention your strengths in your resume, don’t overstuff it with details you can save for the interview. Just because you have other activities outside of work that you want to share, that doesn’t mean they need to take up valuable real estate on your resume.
Hiring managers often deal with dozens, if not hundreds, of resumes. Don’t make yours harder to read because it runs longer than it needs to. Begin with your most recent position and accomplishments and stick to that path. Keep it relevant, short, and sweet so you stand out as an optimal candidate.
Your resume is the most important biography you may write. If it’s been a while since you’ve updated it, now’s your chance. Craft a quality resume with the three tips we just covered, and you may be well on your way to a job interview.