Creating the perfect resume sounds like a daunting task, doesn’t it? As if job searching isn’t time consuming enough! Do not fret though, because we have a few tips for your resume that can make the process a bit easier. The biggest takeaway is to tailor your resume to the job you are applying for. This may be a little more time consuming while you are creating and editing your resume, but it will make the application process so much faster when you have your resume(s) perfected. Many applicants have more than one resume. Why? So that they can tailor each resume to a specific job they want. This isn’t required by any means, but it is something to consider. For example, if you are interested in an Administrative Assistant position as well as an Office Coordinator position, you may want two separate resumes. Each resume will highlight different aspects of your experience, which will provide recruiters and hiring managers with a better view of what you can offer their team. We also recommend the following advice while working on your resume:
Resume Tip #1 – Tailor Your Resume to the Job You Want
Let’s say you found a job posting at a great company down the street from your house. You really want this job, even though your resume isn’t a perfect match to the job description. This is an opportunity for you to tailor your resume to the job description and highlight the skills that you do have that they are looking for! For example, if you want to apply for an Administrative Assistant position but have never had that job title before, you need to highlight any of your skills or experience that is like that of an Administrative Assistant. Describe your experience using Microsoft Office, working on spreadsheets, or answering the phone. Did you schedule meetings or order office supplies? Put that on your resume! If you’re looking for warehouse type work, all the machinery and equipment you worked with must be on your resume. Why? Recruiters and Hiring Managers want to see that you have experience with specific tools and machinery which mean you will need less training if hired. This could bump you to the top of the candidate list!
Anything on the job description that you have done should be on your resume. Recruiters want to see that some relevant experience and skills exist, or they will not think you’re a good fit for the position. Don’t worry about the one-page resume “rule” – get your experience on your resume & let it shine!
Resume Tip #2 – Formatting Your Resume
The first thing a recruiter will notice is the formatting of your resume. Your resume likely won’t be reviewed if it looks like a mess with typos, jumbled formatting, and too many graphics. Your goal is to have a resume that is clean and easy to follow. For each job you have had, you should list the company name, your title, and the start & end date you worked there. Use bullet points under each of your previous positions to describe your accomplishments and responsibilities. Your resume should start with your most recent job, followed by your previous work experience. It is so important to put your starting and ending dates of employment next to each position, so recruiters know how long you worked at each company. Utilize an easy-to-read font and keywords – this will help your resume appear when recruiters do a search! Lastly, your resume MUST have an e-mail address or phone number where you can be reached.
Resume Tip #3 – Your Resume & Your Social Media Accounts
Many job seekers include their LinkedIn profile URL on their resume. This is a great idea, as it allows recruiters to see any recommendations you have received as well as certificates or advanced training. With social media playing such a large role in people’s lives, it is important to keep your profiles clean and professional (or totally private so the public can’t see!). It is imperative that your resume reflect your LinkedIn profile, and vice versa. The dates, companies and job titles must look the same. Any discrepancy between your social media and your resume will present a huge red flag for a recruiter. It should also go without saying…any type of inappropriate pictures or language should be removed immediately. First impressions are everything, and inappropriate online behavior is not an impression you want to make!
Resume Tip #4 – Explain Any Gaps of Employment
Life happens, and recruiters and hiring managers understand that. However, you must be ready to address any extended gaps on your resume. There are many times when people need to step away from their job because they became a stay-at-home parent or a caregiver for a family member. Perhaps you were caught in a company-wide layoff or terminated. Some people simply took time off to deal with social distancing during covid. You must be prepared to discuss why you were not working and how you kept your skills up to date. It is a good idea to include the reason for the gap of employment on your resume if you didn’t work for more than a few months. If you were terminated, do not speak negatively about the company or your previous manager. It is better to say something along the lines of “we didn’t agree about….” Or “we didn’t see eye to eye about…”. The goal is to let the recruiter know you have a good work ethic and don’t quit easily!
Resume Tip #5 – Don’t Forget Your Soft Skills
We know that our previous work experience and skills are critical to securing a new job. But did you know that your soft skills are also extremely important? Hiring managers and recruiters want employees who can get along well with others, show up to work on time, and offer a sense of dedication to their team. You don’t have to be the smartest person in the room to get the job! Other important soft skills include being a good communicator, time management skills, ability to change gears easily, work as a team player but also independently with minimal supervision, and excellent customer service. These are the types of skills that make an employee well-rounded, and that is what every Employer desires!
This may seem like A LOT of work and time to put your resume together, but we promise that it will be worth it when you land the job you’ve wanted! Having your resume(s) updated and ready to go will also greatly reduce the time you spend applying to each job online. If you have any questions, please reach out to us at 215-855-8000. We are happy to help!