4 Ways to Take Your Resume to the Next Level

I was recently interviewed by CareerCloud radio and I shared my top tips and key messages on how to succeed in the job search. I went over so much content that I decided to write a blog post to summarize how you can take your resume to the next level!

What’s key to keep in mind is that a recruiter spends only about six seconds scanning a resume.  The best advice that I can give to help you stand out is that you should aim to transform your resume from a history document to a marketing document. A history document lists what you’ve done in chronological order, whereas a marketing document gives the reader a sense of your personal brand, the impact you’ve made, and why you’re the best candidate to hire.

Here are four ways for you to do that right now!

1. Add some colour.

Too much colour and design can be overwhelming, however having a touch of colour on your name and the headings of your resume can really make you stand out. Colour can be very refreshing when you’ve been dealing with hundreds of black and white resumes all day! When you’re picking a colour, choose one that resonates with your personal brand. My brand colour is bright blue, which is bold and fresh!

2. Convey your personal brand.

Think about your current resume. Now think about yourself: your values, personality, interests, and moments that you’re proud of. These all make up your personal brand. Does your resume convey your brand? If not, a great way to fix it is to add a personal branding statement, which is a short, 2-3 sentence statement that describes who you are, what makes you unique, and the value that you bring. Here’s my branding statement:

Authentic connector with a keen eye for identifying, recruiting, and developing top talent. Passionate about inspiring people to implement new ideas to maximize performance and achieve excellence.

3. Quantify and qualify.

The most common mistake that I see when scanning resumes is that many of them contain what I call ‘surface level’ information. They list responsibilities instead of conveying what impact the candidate made, and most importantly, why they’re the right person to hire. My top tip is to make sure that your resume quantifies and qualifies. For every claim that you make, back it up with numbers. If you planned an event, how many people attended? How do you quantify the success of the event? Here are some examples:

  • Proposed operational modifications to spearhead cost savings. Initiatives were implemented and resulted in annual savings of over $1.5 million.
  • Planned and executed organization’s first conference for clients in the Boston territory, resulting in sales increase of 10%.

4. Highlight promotions and progression.

If you’re planning on re-vamping your resume, here’s something else for you to remember: don’t undersell yourself. This means including details like how many times you’ve been promoted, in what span of time, and how your role progressed and changed since you started. If you were the first employee to do something or if you were promoted at a faster rate than is usual in your organization, make sure that you highlight it.

To learn more, check out my interview with CareerCloud radio by clicking here! Do you have any questions about making your resume more marketable? Ask them in the comments section and I’ll get back to you!

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