Creating an outstanding résumé takes some skills in writing, creativity and an easy to understand design. Your ultimate goal is to get that prospective employer to actually read your résumé. You want something that will get their immediate attention and encourage them to read further with the ultimate goal of setting up an interview.
Here are some tips to make that happen.
Focus on Results
When writing your résumé, don’t concentrate on a job description; focus on the results you’ve achieved. You want to give solid statistics and examples.
Mistake: Simply listing your job duties.
Don’t just list what you did on the job. Potential employers want to know what you were responsible for, but it goes much further than that. They want to see solid results. For example, if you were in a sales roll, don’t just mention things such as; sold memberships to potential clients, made outbound cold-calls, and constructed a pipeline of candidates.
Instead, convey the bottom-line results.
Something like this: Out of a sales team of 50, I was consistently ranked number 2. I was solely responsible for generating sales in the amount of $1 million dollars for three years in a row. I was also an Award-winning sales person of the year in 2010, 2011 and 2012. Responsible for converting 60% of sales leads.
Now, that should get their attention.
Concise and Brief
Hiring personnel do not have time to read through a 3-page resume. They receive 100’s of resumes for any job they post. They typically take your résumé and scan for the keywords and skill set they are looking for. They will also look at your accomplishments and achievements.
If they don’t see what they’re looking for, they move on to the next resume.
Therefore, it is very important to make it concise and brief.
Constructing a one-page resume is most beneficial. You are likely to stand-out more because you are going to put the most pertinent and relevant information in that one-page resume. It gives the employer a quick synopsis of your skills, experience and education at a quick glance.
The best design method for a résumé is simple. Don’t get fancy with all those fancy fonts. Keep it to a simple font that is easy to read and scannable. There are a lot of employers who scan resumes into their applicant tracking system, therefore, your résumé needs to be a simple font, at least a 12 size, and in black only. Anything else can be very distracting and take away from what you’re trying to accomplish.
Using your word software works just fine when creating a résumé. If you’re unsure and want someone to help you create a résumé, there are several places that specialize in writing resumes. You may want to consider hiring someone to create an expert resume for you.
As mentioned above, a lot of companies scan your résumé into their applicant tracking system. When they have a job opening, they will go to that applicant tracking system and run a search for specific skills. This is where keywords come into play.
Without overdoing it, you’ll need to add some keywords associated with your experience and skill set. For example, if you’re an aerospace engineer, you might add the following, depending on your discipline: mechanical, electrical, avionics, software, flight test, systems analyst, etc.
Use specific and focused keywords you think employers would use to search for your experience and credentials.
In today’s tough market, you only have one chance to make an impression of what you can offer a potential employer. Show them who you are in a professional manner and showcase your expertise in a concise way. Take the time to proof your résumé by reading it backwards. Ensure there are no mistakes whatsoever. It is imperative if you want your résumé to provoke that employer to make that important phone call to you to set up an interview.