Giving your resume a much needed spring clean is an essential part of moving onwards and upwards in your career but where do you start when it comes to improving what you feel is already a great resume?
Imagine you are a recruitment professional for a company, constantly swamped with resumes for oversubscribed positions and question what you would look for on paper from a potential candidate. One of the main stumbling blocks when writing a resume is not having enough space to really describe your skills, education and previous industry experience but the key to a successful resume is condensing your experience and career goals in a digestible way to make use of the space.
Cut the Clutter When it Comes to Content
The first step in updating your resume is having a good content clear out, which can be rather difficult if you have extensive experience or skills, but be brutal and only keep the information that is relevant to the roles you are currently applying for. As well as the clutter, cut out the clichés which are sadly all too common in resumes, instead focus on the facts to instate your positive attributes and present these with the use of strong vocabulary.
Update with Every Application, Not Every Career Change
Don’t just update your resume every time you change career either – as you may have experienced with your college application and corresponding personal statements, tailoring your application to the role you are applying for is essential when demonstrating the passion and enthusiasm every company looks for. So never send a standardized resume and cover letter when applying for a role, instead use their job role description to update your resume every time you apply for a different position.
Make an Impression at First Glance
Recruitment and HR departments are essentially looking for a resume that stands out and when sifting through hundreds of resumes, this means that the majority of resumes only get a glance to make an impression. Make that glance linger with a smart layout, there are a number of resume templates you can utilise, these simply require you to add your content and print!
When searching and adapting your new layout, aim to grab the reader with a brief personal introduction at the top of your resume and opt for summarised information rather than long paragraphs or long lists of bullet points. Essentially make your resume attractive to look at and let the information grab your prospective employer from there!