Revamp Your Resume with This Quick & Easy Refresher
There are probably like a quattuordecillion (yep, a real number) resume writing tips out there boasting:
Hot resume tips! Best resume advice! How to write an awesome resume!
And on and on.
We all know how important writing a killer resume can be. And we also know just how many resources are out there.
But, lest you forget, here’s a refresher for sounding confident and professional to your next job hunt, whether you’re crafting your first—or 50th—resume.
Just get started.
Use one of their pre-made templates or create one of your own.
They make it simple and easy to design a visually-pleasing resume and set aside sections for information specific to you.
If you really want to work in a certain field, tailor your resume to it. Some incredible examples include those that look like music playlists and fashion collections—even web pages that mimic the look of a particular company’s platform.
Be creative… tastefully.
Grab attention from start. This especially holds true if you’re in a creative field.
Recruiters and interviewers often look at a resume for a few seconds. You can use minimal color and sparse designs to stand out.
Just don’t overwhelm the reader.
When in doubt, a classic monochromatic resume works as well, provided it’s formatted nicely.
Remember, application bots—called an Application Tracking Systems—are also looking at your resume. So keep it navigable to both the human and artificial eye.
Connect the dots.
If you’re proud of an accomplishment—even if it was in high school and you’re not quite sure how it fits—list it.
If you led meetings for a club, volunteered in your neighborhood, held an office on student council, or have any work experience, add it. It all shows you’re committed and motivated, and you can explain how they relate to the position you’re seeking in your cover letter.
The key is to make connect it to the job opening. Make it easy for the recruiters to see how it helps you qualify. More on that later.
Have. Someone. Proofread.
If you take away anything from this refresher, let it be this: Have someone proofread your resume.
It sounds basic, I know.
But so many people turn in resumes that are full of grammar and punctuation errors that could’ve been easily avoided. These are relatively small things that can make a huge difference in a reviewer’s mind, so be sure that everything looks good before you hit send.
And don’t forget the cover letter…
For some employers, resumes and cover letters go together like peanut butter and jelly. Totally complimenting one another and making the most perfect sandwich.
For others? Well, they can be strictly the peanut butter type. Like, they can’t be bothered with slathering on another layer when a peanut butter sandwich is already good enough. (Hey, to each his own.)
So if your next (fingers crossed) employer is wanting a cover letter, here are few tips for making sure it makes an impact.
Connect the dot and cover any gaps.
If you want to explain a gap in your experience compared to a job description, to expound on your experience with specific details or to express additional interest in the position, the cover letter is the place to do it.
Let’s say you’re applying for a position in finance but have no “real” experience. But, you did work at a grocery store over the summer. Sound like a stretch?
Not so fast. You can make it work.
Tell them how you managed money at the register and used your earnings to save for college tuition.
From talking with recruiters and hiring managers, I’ve learned they will review an applicant’s cover letter even if they don’t 100 percent fit the position description.
Some even place more emphasis on what they learn in the cover letter opposed to the resume.
Say why you’re interested—and why you’re the best fit.
Time to talk yourself up.
Explain why you want the position and how you’re qualified (match your accomplishments or personality to the specific requirements in the job description).
Demonstrate how your skills and working style—motivated, a quick learner, hard working, a leader, organized—will have you working above and beyond their expectations.
Keep it short and sweet.
One page, at most. Keep it moving.
Tailor it to the job and company.
The cover letter is not one size fits all. Don’t send the same generic one to every employer.
Honestly, the recruiter can tell.
And, to make a more human connection, address it to the person reviewing your resume and cover letter. If you don’t know it, just use the company’s name.
Keep It Classy & Confident
Like I said earlier, there are lots of tips and tricks and techniques to employ on your resume and cover letter, whether you’re applying for a summer internship or your first job out of college.
But when all the input from others can begin to cloud your view, just remember to be classy and confident.
Present yourself professionally, drum up the things your proud of and believe that you are qualified and ready for the position you’re seeking. You got this.
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