Your resume should be under constant revision as you continually look for ways to improve how you present yourself and your value to potential employers. Here are some quick ideas for bringing new life to your resume:
- Put your biggest selling point first. It sounds kind of obvious but it’s amazing how often someone has something really unique and marketable buried deep in the resume. Find a way to share your most important selling point, the thing that really makes you a match for an opportunity, right under your name on the resume.
- Bring out your brand. If you don’t have a clear, easy to articulate brand, take the time to define one. If you have one, ask yourself if it is clear in each aspect of your resume. Think of your brand as your value proposition and go through your resume line by line asking “How does this show my promise of value to a future employer?”
- Be a match, but be different. Of course you need to show that you meet the job requirements. But you also need to show you go beyond them, are different and are memorable. Items 1 and 2 (above) are great ways to do that. Make clear how you are unique, bring out your brand and do it in a concise, memorable fashion.
- Eliminate the irrelevant. Unrelated experience, however impressive, is distracting. Don’t let anything pull the resume reviewer away from your value proposition, differentiator and match to the job requirements. Particularly if you have a long and varied work history, focus your resume around the successes that relate to your ability to succeed in the current job opportunity.
- Fill the gap. Even if you’ve been out of work for awhile, your resume should reflect continuing growth, new successes and ways you are keeping up in your field. There are plenty of ways to do this. Update your resume regularly with your latest certification, success story or professional involvement.
- Customize, customize, customize. Every time you send out a resume, you should ask yourself: What matters most to the person reading it? What problem does this company have that I can solve? How can I bring out my match to their needs? What quality, experience or success do I have that will make me most appealing to them? Every single resume should be customized to the recipient.
Even if you already have a great resume, pick one or two of these tips and see if you can make it even better.