I’m really excited to have a friend and fellow Oklahoman, Vannice Doulou, contributing on the blog this week. 🙂
It’s a new year and some of you all might even be looking for a new job. Well before you do, check out these 8 tips that are sure to help you improve your resume.
Enjoy and don’t forget to leave your thoughts in the comments below!
So you have been job hunting for months now, maybe even a year! You cannot seem to figure out why you are not getting any calls. Perhaps your resume needs a little boost! Well you have come to the right place. I am going to give you 8 ways you can improve your resume!
Focus on one job position.
Often times we just want to get out of dodge (a current place of employment or unemployment) without any care of what the next job is and where it may be. So we create this massive resume that includes all of our skills and credibility. We think that the recruiter will see value or potential and just give us a job offer, but in reality too much information is overwhelming or distracting. So I say, be specific. Have a specific resume for teaching that you submit for all of your teaching applications, recruiters, etc.
What do I mean by that? I mean show me the numbers! Quantify all of your bullet points. “Analyzed discrepancies in budget for improvement.” This sounds good, but not that good. It leaves the quantification up to the reader to guess. “Completed training contracts for training department.” Sounds good, but how many contracts and in what time frame? Try this for a change. “Negotiated, 50+ training contracts in 3 months” Sound better? When thinking of quantification, think time, money, percentages, number of clients, employees, etc. This brings me to my next topic.
Brag on yourself
Yes, I know you may not want to, or feel comfortable with this, but you have got to push past the discomfort and toot your own horn. No one is going to buy an average car or date the average guy, right? So what makes you stand out? You can brag on yourself by showing what you did for the company, meaning how did you save time, money, increase sales, or even decrease discrepancies? Some employers won’t show you that you saved them money, so you have got to dig a little bit. For those training contracts in example 2, you spent an average of $2500 per contract. So you spent $125,000 in total. However, the max you can spend per contract is $10,000; that is $500,000! So you saved your organization $375,000 ($500,000-$125,000). Now let us reword that previous statement. “Negotiated, 50+ training contracts in 3 months which saved $375,000”. Are you following me? You have got to prove you are valuable by bragging on yourself.
Action words are often underused, but they help us to brag and prove our value. But which words do you use for which tasks? I have a nice cheat sheet for you I often use from Muse. You cannot tell me those action verbs are not sellers! Try them yourself! 🙂
Parallelism is “the state of being parallel or corresponding in some way”. It gives grammatical construction. No, you are not writing poetry, but you do not want your recruiter to work too hard either. Your job is to make the recruiters job as easy as possible when reading your resume. Read these bullet points:
- Responsible for developing policies
- Compliance Department’s organizer for quality control
- Tactfully negotiated 50 contracts
Above, I began each bullet with three different parts of speech. Try reading this:
- Developed policies
- Organized quality control for Compliance Department
- Negotiated 50 contracts
This is an easier read for your recruiter. Basically, find a pattern or rhythm and stick to it.
Key word frequency
Some organizations receive so many applications that they use key word matching software to make a decision on your resume. So before your resume even touches the hands of a human being it has to pass the computer test. How do you do this? Easily. Copy and paste the job announcement, preferably the job requirements and/or responsibilities section, to see which words they use the most in their announcement. The more they use the word “Compliance” or “analyze”, the more likely you MUST desire to have this word in your resume. There are plenty of “word frequency counters”, but I like this one. Check it out!
This may sound like a no-brainer to some of you, but you would be amazed at how many resumes I have viewed resumes that have 6 different font types and sizes. It is just simply non appeasing to the eye and can be an automatic toss to the “no” pile.
Yes, I know, another no-brainer, perhaps, but proofreading has become ancient for some reason. Print and read your resume out loud to check for errors and have someone else to read it. Yes, even if you have enabled spell checker on Microsoft Word. 🙂
Now of course there are other ways in which you can improve your resume, but these are amongst my top 8 for improvement. I would love to hear, how these 8 topics may have helped your resume, or maybe you could share other tips you have used to enhance your resume. Whichever you choose, be boundless! 😉
Thank you for your read.