When applying for a job, it is critical that your resume presents you in the best light possible. A job opening commonly brings a huge number of applications, and human resource personnel and managers are pushed for time as they endeavour to sift their way through. Keep in mind that each resume may only be studied for a few seconds before a decision is made to progress the application further…or not.
So, what can you do to make your resume stand out?
Are your details up-to-date?
Outdated information, including old emails, addresses and phone numbers are commonly forgotten about on resumes. If an employer can’t get in touch with you through the details you’ve applied, chances are they have two hundred other applicants to fall back on. The same can be said for making sure all your courses are relevant and up-to-date; you may realise that you need to undertake a course just to be considered for your desired career. If so, be HBA Learning Centres are great for updating your skills, check out their site to see what they have on offer.
Research the company and ensure your resume is tailored to the job
Before applying for a job and submitting your resume, be sure to do your research. Start by carefully reading and viewing the website of the company, as a website can be a goldmine of information about a prospective employer. A visit to their site will help you to understand the mission and values of the company, the services or products they provide, and the vision that they have moving forward. It is also likely that you will get hints about the type of people they currently have on staff and want to employ.
When you have learnt about the company and the role for which you would like to apply, you will be much better positioned to craft an application and resume that addresses the selection criteria and shows your compatibility with the company.
Strategically incorporate keywords and buzzwords relevant to the industry
In a job application, there is an art to effectively incorporating words that are meaningful to employers and the words they are looking for. However, it is vitally important that you do not go overboard with the use of such words.
It is appropriate to include words and phrases, including: team player, managed and achieved, as long as they are used in a natural way and you can support them with examples.
Pay attention to detail and ensure your resume exudes professionalism
When choosing a format for your resume, it is imperative that you select a format that is visually appealing. The format should not draw attention away from the content or redirect it to any visuals used. Essentially, the format should be professional and modern.
If you are serious about being considered for a position, you need to pay exceptionally close attention to detail. This means, you should take the time and perhaps seek the assistance of others, to ensure that your resume is free from errors and is fluent.
Keep in mind that a resume with errors suggests to a potential employer that you are lazy and unwilling to thoroughly review your work.
Remember too, the most important information on your resume should be presented upfront. Make sure the key information is presented on the first page of your resume.
Use a header and supplement your resume with a covering letter
At the very top of your resume, a clear and definite statement should be featured. This statement needs to tell who you are and reference your interest in (or appropriateness for) the position. In fact, it is helpful to consider this heading a branding statement; it’s where you are emphatically promoting yourself.
A cover letter should be included with your resume, unless the employer says that they do not want one. The cover letter is useful for employers wanting to learn more about you, your skills, interest and the extent to which you will match the company and the job.
When applying for a job, you need to take every action possible to ensure your resume stands out from the resumes of other applicants. Because your resume is likely to be considered for only a few seconds before a decision is made whether to read on, you must ensure that every part of it is impressive and thoughtfully prepared.