As a Career Coach I often ask business owners, “When hiring staff what do you look for in a resume?” Some common responses include: legible, not too long, free of typos and meets the job requirements. In my recruitment experience I found that well presented information about the person’s skills, experience and qualifications certainly made my job easier when reviewing resumes.
So, how do you structure your resume to make sure you get the call to interview? Here’s three tips to get you started.
1. CREATE A CAREER PROFILE that speaks about your experience, knowledge, working style and accomplishments. Ideally this summary paragraph (3 to 5 sentences) would be your first resume heading and written in the third person. For example:
A cheerful customer service professional with five years experience in the food retail industry. A positive team player who is passionate about living a healthy lifestyle. Enjoys keeping busy and learning new skills. Received ‘Service Excellence’ award for introducing a successful customer rewards scheme.
Your Career Profile needs to be match closely to the requirements of the position you are applying for and be written in a genuine way.
2. BULLET POINT YOUR SKILLS – List your professional capabilities as Key Skills that you bring to the position advertised. Examples of skills to list are: Accounts Receivable, Sales, Customer Service, Account Management, MYOB, Reception, Manufacturing, Public Speaking, Project Management. Display these in bullet points for ease of reading.
For individuals seeking employment in technical, scientific or trade based roles you would include these under the heading Technical Skills
3. DISPLAY YOUR EMPLOYMENT HISTORY in reverse chronological order and list (with bullet points) your Responsibilities directly relevant to the role you are targeting. Further to this, when detailing your Achievements these need to:
- Be quantifiable. For instance, “Exceeded sales target by 15% for January – March quarter”.
- Demonstrate how you have added value to the business or organisation. Have you introduced a new idea or process that has saved time or money?
- Validate your contribution. Think about when you have been awarded for your contribution or acknowledged with positive feedback for a job well done.
Setting out your resume to include a clearly written career profile, a relevant skills list and strong achievement statements will help your resume get noticed.
Have you checked the appearance of your resume lately?