5 Things Your Resume Needs
As you progress through your career certain things are bound to change; your title, the company, your office, technology, etc. However, one thing is sure to remain constant and that is the necessity of an up-to-date resume.
Your resume reflects your professional experience and is essentially a marketing tool to future employers. Whether you are just starting out in the professional world or have been working for years, a resume follows you from job to job. Since applying to jobs has (for the most part) gone digital with the use of applicant tracking systems, it can become difficult to stand out to hiring managers. Due to this, it is very important to make sure your resume contains the essentials.
Writing and editing your resume can be a daunting experience, especially since you only have six seconds to catch the eye of hiring managers. Because of this, our friends over at TopResume and their career advice expert, Amanda Augustine, have five essential elements to include in your resume if you want a chance at the job.
Job Description Keywords
Applicant tracking systems (ATS) weed out resumes for the employer by scanning and ranking them. Because of this, your resume could potentially slip through the cracks and land in the “no” pile without ever speaking to someone. In order to “beat the system” you should include keywords from the job description in your resume. While not explicitly stated in a “key words” section of the job description, a safe bet is usually to incorporate the words that appear most often.
Augustine recommends making your job goals clear on your resume by including a professional title of the type of job you are seeking. This can either be beneath your contact information, or via a professional summary section.
Certifications and Credentials
Do you have any professional certifications (i.e., HubSpot) or an advanced degree (i.e. MBA)? These distinctions could set you apart compared to the other potential candidates for the same position. You can include a “Certifications” section to list the various certifications for the different aspects of the job to which you are applying, and obviously include your relevant degree in the “Education” section. However, if your degree is an asset in your job field, Augustine suggests including the acronym after your name so it immediately stands out to the hiring manger.
For example, if you are applying to a business manager position and you earned your MBA, you can showcase this by starting your resume with “John Smith, MBA.” While you may have additional certifications that pertain to the position as well, they do not need to be included at the top of your resume.
Although you can’t be directed to these links when handing out physical copies of your resume, chances are you are applying to a job online so you should definitely include these. This is your chance to promote your personal brand. Do you have blog that you’re passionate about? What about your LinkedIn profile? These are great things to include at the top of your resume.
The key here is to make sure they have a positive impact on your brand. If your blog isn’t exactly professional, you probably should exclude it from your resume.
Stats On Your Resume
The old writing tactic of “show, don’t tell” comes into play when showing statistics on your resume. Instead of simply using a bullet point that says “Assisted in revenue growth,” you should say something like “Grew revenue by 150% to $3 million through…[whatever you did].” Not only is this a chance for you to toot your own horn, but it shows hiring managers tangible evidence that you were successful. It goes without saying that these statistics should be accurate and represent things that you actually did.
Your resume is a way to pitch yourself to a company without saying a word. By including these five elements, you give yourself a better chance to stand out to a company’s ATS and get your foot in the door at a company. The rest is up to you!