Companies are receiving resumes from an ever-increasing amount of applicants. Employers are able to be far choosier now more than ever. That is why it is crucial that you make your resume stand out above the rest. It is said that potential employers take approximately 10-15 seconds to scan a resume. You must ensure that you grab their attention and leave them wanting to read on and learn more.
Put Your Name and Desired Position Front and Center
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 are finalizing their list of interviews. The second item must be your job title. An employer does not want to have to hunt through a document to try and figure out which position you are looking to obtain. Make your current or desired job title stand out. Be as specific as possible. If you are seeking the position of Project Manager, then specify this at the top of the resume.
Areas of Expertise/Core Competencies
Next on the list of attention grabbers is a list of areas of expertise or core competencies. These are the hard or technical skills you use every day in your job in order to develop results for your employer. Focus on performance skills and technical skills over soft skills. Let your areas of expertise shine through, letting the company know that by hiring you they will be gaining a true asset to their organization.
By now your 10-15 seconds is probably up. With your eye-catching resume you have made the reader want to know more. However, you must now focus on holding 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 are indeed the full package and worth another look.
Create a Succinct Profile of Yourself
In between your job header and list of areas of expertise should be a succinct profile of yourself. Since you have already caught the reader’s eye and drawn them to your header and list of competencies, it is only natural that they will focus next on your profile. This should be a short paragraph consisting of approximately 5-8 lines, which highlight your years of experience, relevant personality traits, and innovative skills and performance metrics. Take the opportunity to use this space wisely and sum up yourself as a professional.
If you have 5+ years of related industry experience, make that your opening line and bold it. If you are new to the field or are a career changer, explain how you are dedicated to helping the company succeed and making a positive difference. By showcasing your commitment to the company, a potential employer is made aware of your passion and willingness to help others.
Use Space to the Fullest
On a more general note concerning selling your skills, utilize the space under each past job position to the fullest. Take the time to describe innovative and effective methods you have used to deliver results for your employers, and highlight relevant accomplishments that quantify your results. 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!
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