With appraisals around the corner, let’s face it, some of us will be left disappointed with the results but do not be disheartened, there is still a big wide world beyond your current organisation and the master key to open those doors is your resume.
A resume is the single most important document in job hunting and it should be 100% on point. You could invest in a professional to perfect it for you but if you cannot afford one here are 12 simple but powerful ways you can optimize your resume to take it a notch above the rest.
Do away with the and start your resume with a carefully tailored enriched with key words synced with the prospective job description. Always think from the perspective of the recruiter while drafting your resume.
Follow the statement section with short bullet points with your expertise in your resume. Add a mix of your professional, technical and soft skills here to maximize the use of this section. Stick to under 6 bullet points. Again, this must be customized as per your prospective job description.
The universally accepted format of documenting your experience in a resume is in reverse chronology so be sure to follow it. That means you should start with your most recent experience at the top followed by the previous experiences. Be sure to mention the duration and designation of each job stint.
Here again, follow the reverse chronology order of latest degree followed by previous education degrees. Feel free to skip mentioning grade 10 and 12 if you have a bachelor’s degree in hand. You can also do away with the percentages in the resume.
Be sure to mention any professional training and certifications you have undertaken in your resume. This usually helps take you a notch above the rest of the candidates who may not have undergone training. Whether relevant to the job profile or not it is advisable to add it to your profile.
Quantify your experience in numbers and figures in your resume to make them shine through. Recruiters look at this section very closely to set you apart from the rest. Any acknowledgment of merit received at an organisation or college should go down here.
As naïve as this section may seem it holds grave importance. Both the ATS (Applicant Tracking System) and recruiters search for certain soft skills in a resume for each vacancy. Some may require good communication skills while another may require good analytical skills. Hence go through the job description of the prospective job while penning down this section of your resume.
This is another important section of the resume often overlooked or wrongly presented. Stay clear from mentioning very basic skills such as using Windows version 2010 or Microsoft Office Word. Computer usage is now considered a mandated requirement thus mentioning it, is in this age, will be redundant.
You can add a bit of personality to your resume by including a few unique interests or hobbies. This, can in turn, be synced with your prospective jobs, such as, if you are applying for the post of a travel writer you can mention your love for travel as a hobby or if you are an investment banker you can mention your interest in the Fibonacci series of numbers or Sudoku.
10) Community / Social involvement
If you have actively volunteered in any social or community work be sure to mention it in your resume. This has a very positive impact on recruiters. 80% recruiters say they would hire someone if they have additionally taken out time from their professional and personal life to give back to the community. If you haven’t any to mention - now is a good time to start.
Getting the format correct of your resume is of critical importance. If you are bold enough to play around with the format to add some visual appeal will win you some brownie points but remember not to go overboard and complicate the presentation. Using colours in moderation is also a great way of adding depth to your resume.
One cannot emphasize enough the importance of proofreading your resume once completed. Go over it to identify spellings and grammatical errors, first from top to bottom and then from bottom to the top. You can also ask a friend to go through your resume for you. Alternatively, you can run it through software such as Grammarly to do the work for you.
Now that you have all the right information to draft a stellar resume let nothing hold you back from getting that dream job you have been eyeing for a while.