Most job seekers have heard that recruiters and hiring managers spend only a handful of seconds reviewing candidate resumes. That information, published as part of a study in 2012, significantly changed how people craft their resumes, leading to cleaner, more concise documents.
Now that 2018 is on the horizon, many of the trends spawned by that study are still in play, though there are also emerging trends that need to be considered. If you want to make sure your resume exceeds expectations for the coming year, here are some tips for getting it ready.
In comparison to the years before the 2012 study, resumes could be fairly dense. Now, most resumes seem very stripped down by comparison as job seekers want to present the most relevant pieces of information quickly.
However, being concise doesn’t mean being devoid of personality. Generic resumes that rely too heavily on the job posting for their material are going to seem cookie cutter, so finding a way to express some character while keeping the primary points clear is going to be a necessity if you want to stand out.
This can mean avoiding bland lists of skills and focusing more on accomplishment-oriented statements that can set you apart from the pack and using your professional summary to provide the hiring manager with insight regarding how you think or what you are passionate about.
Don’t Neglect Soft Skills
With company culture being front and center, more businesses are assessing applicants’ soft skills to determine whether they will fit in and be able to perform the duties associated with the role. Plus, describing your soft skills can give the hiring manager insight regarding your workplace personality, helping to set you apart from those who neglect that information.
Which soft skills need to be highlighted varies from one position to the next. Refer to the vacancy announcement to see if there is any information regarding which are viewed as most important by the company or, when in doubt, stick with classics like leadership, teamwork, and mentorship, as long as they are supported by your previous experience.
As more companies turn to social media to learn about candidates, it has become increasingly common to include links to your pages on your resume, especially if you may be hard to locate through basic searches or there is a high chance the hiring manager will confuse someone else’s profile for yours.
After preparing your profiles for your job search, feel free to add links to your most relevant pages (such as Facebook and LinkedIn) to your resume along with your other contact information. Forgo listing any accounts that won’t help your job search and, if you don’t want the posts seen, set key accounts or information to private.
Including links can be especially important for people with common names, as it may be hard to determine which profile is yours at a glance. And you don’t want someone else’s profile impacting your job search.
Pay Attention to Keywords
While you don’t want to draw too much of the content of your resume from vacancy announcements, it is still crucial that you add relevant keywords throughout the document. Many companies still rely on automated screening processes and, if you don’t have the right keywords, your resume can be discarded before it is ever presented to the hiring manager.
Taking time to review your resume now means you’ll be better prepared to land a new position in 2018. If you are looking for an opportunity, the professionals at MindFinders can connect you with leading employers in the DC area. Contact us to see how our services can help you find your ideal job today.
Written by Tim Booker, President and CEO of MindFinders, with over 20 years of industry experience.
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