Here are six more tips for an interview winning resume.
- Include a customized section called “Career Highlights / Qualifications.” This section of the resume is usually a series of bulleted points that emphasize your most important career experience, your skills, your personality traits and characteristics, and some key accomplishments from your work history as they relate to the job for which you are applying.
- For each former employer, clearly indicate the company name, your position, and the dates of your employment. Provide a brief overview statement that tells me about what the company does, its sales, products, and customers. This helps me assess your experience. Then, tell me exactly what you did for the company in a brief statement. Don’t make me look for information, read between the lines, or try to guess. I won’t and your resume will end up in the dreaded job file for the required year. (You don’t really think anyone takes the time to sort through all those aging resumes, do you?)
- For each employer, include a list of “key contributions” or “key achievements.” Don’t make the mistake of stating, “I answered a multi-line phone system. I provided customer service.” You want to highlight key measurable achievements and successes such as: “I reduced the time for order fulfillment from 2 days to 12 hours.” “I reduced accounts collectible by 80 percent.” “My marketing campaign for the new product won two industry awards for effectiveness.”
- Education statements matter. State dates of attendance, majors, minors, and degrees. Don’t make me guess whether you have a degree or just took a few classes. I will figure it out and it ticks me off to have to figure it out.
- Do include a section that lists awards and other recognition. President of the Junior Class, Secretary of the Synchronized Swim Team, four year merit scholarship winner, or college economics prize winner will catch my eye much faster than a resume without awards and recognition. (Of course, you’d include this section on a resume only if you have an award or recognition to list.)
- Do include a personal section that highlights accomplishments, and anything else that will raise the value of you, as a potential employee, in the eyes of the employer. In this section, catching my eye recently are: volunteerism; involvement with philanthropic causes; publications; team and individual sports participation; leadership positions in school or community organizations (especially in resumes without an “Awards and Recognition” section) or even, “I self-funded my college education by working part-time during all four years of school.”
Well, this is my best advice about what catches my attention – positively – in a resume. I can’t speak for every employer, but know that you can’t go far wrong – and you may go far in the right direction - if you heed these recommendations. When your resume is competing with hundreds of others for attention, you need to do the right things right to be heard above the noise. You can create a winning resume.