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How to Craft a Stellar Resume to Get the Job You Want

career advice Aug 11, 2020

The economy added 1.8 million new jobs to the economy in July, even though we're still in the midst of a historic high unemployment rate. While roughly half of the new jobs are in the hospitality and retail industries, other organizations across industries have opened up or created new positions that they are now hiring for.

Since it takes less than 10 seconds for a recruiter or hiring manager to review a resume, you want to ensure that your resume stands out. 

However, most people hate writing resumes, ranking it right up there with public speaking. As a result, too many treat it like a historical document with a list of past tasks and titles instead of a living document that's designed to capture the attention of the reader.

Today, on my monthly segment on AM Northwest Morning Show, I talked about what it takes to craft a stellar resume. Here are the highlights:

Keep it simple - You'll want to avoid fancy formatting and tables because ATS (applicant tracking systems) can't read the information contained in this section. As a result, all of that vital information you want to share with your future employer will get lost. In addition, tables suggest a list and you want to avoid that and speak in full sentences to more effective convey your message.

Also keep it under two pages. Hiring managers and recruiters are reviewing up to 250+ resumes for each job opening. Trust me, if there's a page three (unless it's a CV for an academic position) you just lost that job.

Skip the objective - Objective sections are dated and old school. They tell the employer what you want instead of what you can do for them (which is vitally more important). The use of them shows you're out of touch, which is not the first impression you want to make. 

Use a summary or career profile section - This is a great way to highlight in a sentence or two who you are, what results you can bring and why you're the ideal candidate. Use this section to highlight your achievements and successes. Think of it as a very strong and powerful elevator pitch.

Talk results not just tasks, titles or skills - When you talk about your experience don't just say what you've done, like managed 20 people, or that you're a strong leader. Instead speak to what you've accomplished as a result of managing 20 people or your strong leadership. Words like accomplished, created, achieved, and results should be used over responsible for, led or oversaw

Tailor your resume to each job - This is a typical mistake, particularly when someone pays a resume writer. After all of the money it's easy to assume that it's the golden ticket that will give you admission into any job you want. It's not.

Don't send out the same resume to every job you apply for. Be strategic by using the keywords used by the employer in the job description in your resume. This will help your resume stand out against all others and let the employer know you're the one they're looking for! 

Other points - Cover letters are still relevant so be prepared to submit one with your resume. Cover letters give you the opportunity to share more details about yourself that you weren't able to include in your 1-2 page resume.

Also, don't list hobbies or other personal data, including your address. At the top of your resume only include your name, email, phone number and LinkedIn address. You can definitely list relevant skills that will help to bolster your application, but don't list fun, cool or interesting facts about yourself on your resume, that's not the place for that.

Check out my Exclusive Resource Library where you'll find more tips for creating a great cover letter and resume.

You can watch the full segment here:

 

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