Do you have a winning resume? As a recruiter, I’ve seen thousands of resumes ranging from very qualified and capable candidates all over the nation. These candidates span from every industry and from administrative professionals to C-level corporate executives. Each time I review a resume, I would review it under the eyes of the hiring manager. Through their eyes, I try to get a sense of who the candidate is and how they are wired. The goal is to see if the candidate (communicated through a resume) capabilities will drive a degree of success in a particular capacity. Research has shown that a typical hiring manager or recruiter will only look at a resume for approximately 15 seconds. So, bearing that in mind, I perform this resume critique under three basic guidelines. If you want to be noticed and receive the proper consideration, following these suggestions will help improve your chances of landing an interview.
Building Your Brand
This is your professional identity and perhaps the most important element that most resumes fail to develop. You can establish your brand and increase your marketing collateral by ensuring that your resume is concise, clearly identifies your professional traits, demonstrates how you will fit into the position and the company corporate culture, grammatically perfect, and free of spelling errors. It needs to flow, be easy to read, packed with rich content, and organized in a format which screams “HIRE ME!” Succeed here and your resume will be pushed forward in the process. Fail here and your resume will be filed away.
Whatever you do, do not copy someone else’s summary of qualifications. Write them yourself or with the help of an expert. The more unique your profile is, the higher the chances of a full review on your resume. An effective profile should be brief and encapsulate your background while highlighting your capabilities and accomplishments. Always tailor your profile to fit the position; so do not use the same profile for every submitted resume.
How will you add value to the position? This is the first question hiring managers or recruiters look for in a candidate. After all, that’s why they are hiring in the first place. You can demonstrate your value by quantifying results. Describe how you helped a company increase revenue, lowered cost and increased productivity. Don’t be afraid to use numbers even if they are not exact. Maximizing your brand will help identify and articulate your professional skills to the decision makers the immediate value and benefit that you bring to the company. This is your chance for a good first impression which means everything during your job search campaign. Differentiating yourself will give you a competitive advantage so revise your profile to create a powerful effective elevator pitch.
Finally, quantify your success and show decision makers how you can contribute to the company’s bottom-line. If you take the initiative to embrace these three essential elements in defining your resume, you will recognize greater results in your search efforts.