Unsure how to make your accomplishments stand out? Here’s what you need to know.
If you are working on your resume, it is important to position yourself as if you were reading it from the employer's perspective. Instead of thinking, “What can this job do for my career?” – think more about “What can I possibly bring to this employer?” It is the answer to the second question that will help you align your skill-set with the needs of the potential job opening.
First, include several job titles or skill-sets at the top of the resume (immediately after the heading). For an administrative position, the headings could be something similar to: Customer Service Expert | Administrative Oversight | Office Management. If someone is in accounting, they may want to use a heading such as: Accounts Payable and Receivable | Financial Management.
Next, be sure to include a career summary. This is a three to five line section at the top of your resume (immediately after the job titles and heading) that describes your career from a high overview perspective. This section should include keywords from the advertisement, a list of some of your past experiences, and the diverse skill-sets that you can bring to the employer.
Then, include a section that discusses Core Competencies or Areas of Expertise. This section can be modified for each job opportunity and should include skills that are listed in the job posting. Items like Leadership, Communication, Detail-Orientation, Decision-Making, and Time Management skills can be included here. This section is critical to making it through the Applicant Tracking System or ATS. Many companies utilize this computerized scanning system to go through resumes and put them into a 'yes' pile or a 'no' pile. If you don't have the appropriate keywords listed on your document, you can say 'goodbye' to your chances of an interview.
Finally, under Work Experience or Professional History, ensure you can back-up your claims. Rather than stating you have marketing skills, state the dollar amount of the budget you managed. If you increased sales during your tenure with an organization, list the percentage that sales increased by each year. Quantitative information is a key to relaying the relevant information when applying for a new position.
The bottom line is to be as specific as possible with your information, ensure you read and re-read the job posting to verify you are using the right keywords, and include all appropriate sections within your document.
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