Maryann Cox. Resume. September 13th , 2017.
Rely on Templates or Sample Resumes - If you are surfing the web and looking for a good resume sample or template to use as a guideline for your own resume, make sure the sample you settle on is appropriate considering your background, the industry you're in, and your career intentions. Because when it comes right down to it, different styles of resumes should be employed in different industries. By way of illustration, a computer programmer's resume will vary greatly from that of a sushi chef. They both have very different skill sets which need to be highlighted in very different ways in order to be effective. If both those individuals tried to write their resumes in the same format, it would be a disaster. Hiring authorities, respectively, each have their own expectations and some resume formats are better than others at addressing those individual expectations.
Cut to the Chase - Don't waste time...get to the good stuff. As I said before, a hiring manager will most often skim, scan, and glance over a resume. Keep in mind that they have specific questions in mind when they review a resume for the first time and they expect specific answers. One of the most important questions they are asking is: 'Who has this person worked for in the past?' For this reason, I always suggest that serious job seekers highlight their experiences first and foremost. Right below your one-sentence Objective Statement you should transition into and Experience section. In this section you should list your past employers, the years you worked for them, your job titles, and a brief description of your duties there. Of course, this may not be the best approach for some people. If your background is heavily dependent on your academic experience, then you may want to jump into that first.
Focus on Your Target - My reasons for saying this are as follows: An unfocused resume sends a very clear message that you are unfocused about your career. And a hiring authority doesn't want to see that. They want to see that you have career goals and that those aspirations correspond with their needs as an employer. So keep in mind that a customized resume, modified for a specific position, is always preferable to a generalized and vague resume. If you're serious enough about a job then you should take the extra time and effort to tailor a resume to that job's requirements. I assure you your efforts will not go unnoticed.
Include Irrelevant Info (AKA 'Fluff') - If it's not important, don't add it to your resume. If you were a cook 10 years ago but now you're looking for a job in retail management, don't clutter up your resume with irrelevancy. Try to put yourself in the shoes of the hiring manager and ask yourself what they would see as important. How does your background correspond with their needs as an employer? Anything else is fluff. Don't add your hobbies to your resume. Don't add your references (if they want them, they'll ask at the appropriate time). And don't include your high school education either. Finally, don't be redundant and repeat yourself throughout the context of your resume. It's OK to reinforce themes, but don't push it. If your title has been Branch Manager at each of your past three companies, find a way to differentiate each of these positions and highlight your most notable accomplishments. Don't just copy and paste the line 'Managed a team of branch employees' three times. That will get you nowhere.
Contrary to what you might think, the most-read part of your resume is not your name. When there are hundreds of resumes to review, names matter little in initial evaluations. The most read part of your resume is your Profile or Experience Summary. If your resume is missing this section, you are losing your best opportunity to create interest. It used to be common to put an Objective at the top of your resume. However, the Profile or Experience Summary section has completely replaced the Objective section. Why? It is a quick 3-4 sentence overview of your qualifications. This acts as an Executive Summary for a reviewer where you clearly point out why you are the best candidate for this specific position. If you don't generate interest in this section, your chances of further review or even an interview are slim.
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