3 Resume Best Practices

With the advent of modern technology, job seekers in today’s day and age are leaps and bounds beyond the old school, type-written resume.  The limitations of the tools of the past may have made formatting a breeze, but they didn’t exactly allow for personalization or that little bit of flair when applying for the job of your dreams.

A quick Google search for “resume templates” will pull up more options than a have-it-your-way burger joint.  While the wealth of resources to start your resume journey may be tempting, this is one of those instances where getting back to basics will serve you better.  Read on as we discuss the fundamental three best practices to help set yourself up for job-hunting success.

Focus on Accomplishments

Let’s face it, the hiring manager or resume screener is going to have a plethora of options for each and every open position.  If you’re a savvy candidate, or simply someone who likes being employed, it’s in your interest to put the best foot forward and talk about the strengths and accomplishments that set you apart from the crowd.

When discussing your prior experience, focus on the goals that you’ve hit, the milestones achieved and the major projects you’ve aced.  If you’re in a sales industry, mention how you led your district or consistently overachieved when it came to hitting your numbers. In a similar vein, provide real data on items such as the number of team members you managed, clients you facilitated or percentage of increase in growth during your tenure.

Tailor Your Resume

Another core quality of a successful resume that stands out is a thorough review of the job description, role, and company before submitting.  Tailoring your resume for each individual position you’ll be applying for will allow you to make the pitch to potential employers that you’re the exact right candidate for this specific role.  You don’t have to start from scratch altogether, either. Even small, nuanced changes in language or a focus on one specific set of skills called for in the listing can make all the difference when your prospective employer is reviewing dozens or hundreds of other applicants.

Proofread!

Whether you choose to go for the old school chronological format or spice things up with a more narrative approach, one of the quickest way to see your resume, and candidacy, end up in the recycling bin is the inclusion of grammatical, spelling, formatting or other errors and mistakes.  Give your resume a solid twice over before hitting that send button. Better yet, ask one or two trusted friends or professional colleagues to help put a fresh pair of eyes on the document. This will not only eliminate costly mistakes, but it could also provide substantive feedback on how a third party views your skills and qualifications.

While the interview room is where you’ll eventually win or lose the job of your dreams, it’s the resume that is your first introduction to a potential employer.  Following these three resume best practices will help you ensure that you’re invited to the dance in the first place and are solid pieces of advice, regardless of job industry or resume style.

Article Updated from the Original on April 8, 2018