If you’re searching for a new position, can you sell your value and top skills in 15 seconds? Give it a try right now… out loud. How did you do?
Hiring Officials Get to Be Extremely Choosy
Companies receive thousands of resumes from an ever-increasing array of applicants to fill only one or two positions. This means that hiring officials get to be extremely choosy about who they select to interview. That’s why it’s crucial that you make your resume stand out above the rest. Employers take approximately 10-15 seconds to scan a resume. You have to grab their attention and leave them wanting to read on and learn more.
The first item that must catch their eye is your name. If you leave a memorable impression, they will recognize your name down the road when they’re finalizing their list of interviews. The second item must be your job title. An employer doesn’t want to have to hunt through a document to try and figure out which position you’re looking to obtain. Make your current or desired job title stand out. Be as specific as possible. If you’re looking to be a “District Manager of Sales and Operations”, then specify this at the top of the resume.
Expertise and Core Competencies
Next on the list of attention-grabbers is a list of areas of expertise or core competencies.
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These are the hard—or technical—skills you use every day in your field that employers either need you to possess, or would find extremely beneficial. Focus on hard technical skills or over soft skills such as “team player”, “problem solver” or “communication skills”. These are attributes that you can demonstrate through your accomplishments instead of listing them. Put your areas of expertise front and center, letting the company know that by hiring you they’ll be gaining a true asset.
By now, your 10-15 seconds are probably up. With your eye-catching resume, you’ve made the reader want to know more about you. Now you need to hold their attention. The next 15 seconds could also make or break your marketability. This is when the role of your professional profile kicks in and demonstrates that you’re indeed the full package and worth another look.
Between your header and areas of expertise should be a succinct profile of yourself. Since you’ve already caught the reader’s eye and drawn them to your header and list of competencies, it’s only natural that they will focus next on your profile. This should be a short paragraph consisting of approximately 5–8 lines or 3–4 bullet points. It should highlight your years of experience, relevant personality traits, and record of accomplishments. Take the opportunity to use this space wisely and sum yourself up as a professional. If you have 5+ years of related experience, make that your opening line and bold it. If you’re new to this career, explain how you’re dedicated to helping the company succeed, or highlight your relevant experience. By showcasing your commitment, a potential company will be made aware of your passion and willingness to learn and grow for the benefit of the company.
Additionally, concerning selling your skills: utilize the space under each past job position to the fullest. Take the time to describe innovative and effective solutions you’ve contributed and highlight relevant accomplishments. Use bullet points to showcase key information that you want to stand out the most.
By following these simple guidelines, you are sure to stand out above the rest and earn your resume a closer read! Need help? We’d love to help write your job search documents.
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