Almost every job-seeker is familiar with the importance of a resume in applying to jobs and landing interviews. However, the concept of a tailored resume has become lost to a large extent. Many people fail to develop resumes that speak not only to their experience, but to their personal set of skills and areas of expertise.
Developing a resume that truly encompasses you as a candidate is easier said than done. Here are some key tips for making sure your resume is more than just a summary of your experience:
Highlight Your Skills
Listing past jobs on your resume will be ineffective without highlighting specific skills that you’ve put into action. You can opt to have a skills section at or near the top of your resume, or incorporate bullets highlighting your skills throughout your employment section. Regardless of how you choose to present them, it’s essential that you list specific skills that are relevant to your qualifications and the position you’re seeking.
Don’t Underestimate Outside Experience
It’s common for many candidates to immediately dismiss odd jobs or side projects when developing their resumes, as they may not seem aligned with their current job search. However, reflecting on other jobs you’ve held can help you fill in gaps on your resume and demonstrate to employers how you’ve used transferable skills in different capacities.
For example, you may note that you collaborated across departments or made presentations to clients in former roles. Even if these tasks were done in seemingly less-relevant jobs, they still speak to your transferable skills and ability to adapt in a variety of workplace settings.
Make It Your Own
While you should follow a professional resume template to a certain extent, don’t be afraid to add your own touch to your resume. One of the most effective ways to stand out from other candidates is to personalize your resume so it tells your story and showcases what you bring to the table as a candidate, personally and professionally. For example, have you done freelance graphic design? Do you have your own lawnmowing business? Anything that adds value to your profile as a candidate can enhance your marketability and illustrate many soft skills, such as communication, team work and dependability.
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