Your resume is the most important financial document you will ever own. It demands your undivided attention, because when it works, the doors of opportunity open for you.
Everything about finding a job has changed over the past few years. The resume you had ten years ago may well have been a masterpiece, but simply updating it will not work in the new world of job search. It’s also a mistake to deceive yourself into thinking you have a good resume if you don’t. And there is only one true test of that. If it isn’t getting you job interviews, it isn’t working.
If you’ve been looking for while and not getting results, don’t waste any more of your time uploading and uploading with your fingers crossed. Stop now. Invest in your future by developing a new, effective resume that will get you results. Become educated in how to create a killer resume yourself, or hire a professional to do the job for you.
Just as technology has revolutionized your professional world, it has also rewritten the rules of job searching, because all recruitment has moved to the Internet. The ease with which we gather and distribute information means that many more resumes are received in response to a single job posting than ever before. Resumes no longer go to someone’s desk for review; they disappear into resume databases, which can contain more than 35 million resumes.
Who gets hired and why?
The candidates that most closely match the job description on paper get the interviews, period. If your resume and cover letter don’t hit 75% or better of the requirements of the position, you won’t even get an interview.
For anyone to actually review your resume, it will first have to be retrieved from the depths of the database by a recruiter using exactly the same tactics as you would use to execute a Google search. Your resume and all your job search tactics need to adapt to the new realities: If your existing resume is written along standard lines, once it is loaded into a resume database, it will be lost forever.
Use a Target Job Title
Every product has a name (“Coke”) or a title (“Avatar”), because that’s what draws the reader/viewer/buyer in. When a headhunter, HR recruiter, or hiring manager logs on to a resume database to search for a resume, the first thing she does is type a job title into a dialog box.
Every product in the world struggling for attention amidst the 3,000- plus advertising images that bombard us every day has a name/title as its first line differentiator—every product in the whole wide world, that is, except the most financially important document you will ever own.
For some reason eight out of every ten resumes lack a target job title to give the reader (or that electronic database spider) a focus. They start with the contact information and then—without a target job title or any way to tell the reader what the document is about— plunge straight into an “Objective” section laying out what the writer wants in an employer and then continues with what the writer thinks is important. Eighty percent of resume writers, in other words, figure that everyone will enjoy plowing through their resumes, blindly hoping to luck upon what exactly it was they were being sold.
How to come up with one
The whole point of job-targeted resumes is that we all have a wealth of experience and what goes into a particular resume is largely determined by what we think about (our POV) as we look back into our work history. You will always write the most powerful resume when you can get inside your customer’s head.
When you can look into your work history and learn to think like the employer when that employer is thinking about filling this specific target job, you will come up with all the skills and experience you have relevant to this job, and will know if there is enough material with which to make a competitive resume.