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5 Must Have Elements of Your Resume

October 27, 2014

Tips on constructing a resume that sets you apart.

First impressions in the job market are based largely around your professional resume. This is the first thing that your potential employers will see in your job search, so it is important to be honest, detailed, and also unique.

5 things you don’t want to forget

1. Title- Recruiters have found that many applicants forget to include a title after their name. Titles help recruiters immediately learn something about you, so be sure to include a descriptive title that grasps what you are looking for with the position. Often times, your resume will be glanced at quickly, so it is important that you have an attention grabbing title. Instead of a vague title such as “Project Manager”, try something more specific that outlines your job responsibilities and displays your certifications. Make sure the recruiter knows exactly what you are looking for.

2. Keywords- Make sure you include words that match the job description and words that have to do with your specific industry. Many companies use scanning software that skims through resumes looking for keywords pertaining to education, experience, skills, and certification. Use the same words that appear in the job listing.

3. Action verbs- You want to make a strong impression on paper, so use strong verbs that outline your accomplishments and skills. Avoid phrases like “responsible for” and start every listing with an action verb. Stay away from weak verbs like “addressed” and lean towards a more action related word like “demonstrated”. Don’t overuse a specific verb, either. You want your resume to pop, and starting all your bullets with “developed,” for instance, weakens your position.

4. Specifics- When detailing your accomplishments and previous job duties, be explicit! Instead of simply stating that you “worked” somewhere, say that you “hired and trained” people as part of the job. Make sure that you update your resume for every job you apply for. There is no “one size fits all” resume; you need specifics unique to that particular job to grab each recruiter’s attention.

5. Notable Achievements- Don’t be shy about your awards, put them towards the beginning of your resume. Once your resume goes through the scanning software, an actual human will read it, but often recruiters know within the first 10 seconds whether you are an appealing candidate. If you fail to fascinate them within the first 10 seconds, your resume could end up in the trash! Employers want to know where you have worked, but more importantly, they want to know what you have achieved, and how you have distinguished yourself in previous positions.

Above all, don’t think that there is one set form for every resume. Adding your own flair and originality when it comes to the content in your resume is key. Make sure it is not too lengthy, though. Include all relevant information for that specific job. Recount your achievements, but don’t obsess about listing every little thing you have achieved. Put information in your resume that will satisfy the scanning software, but will also impress the actual employer.

Questions about creating a resume that stands out or interested in working with a recruiter? Contact us.

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