Are you looking for simple ways to give your resume and edge and push yourself just one inch ahead of your closest competition? Of course you are. Every job seeker searches for the tiny inch of ground that can give them a critical advantage. And every successful job seeker fits the same description: She isn’t necessarily a perfect candidate or a perfect human being; she’s just a slightly better fit for the job then the next person in line. So with that in mind, the small steps below can help you stand out just a little bit more without going back in time and altering your job history (or stretching the truth on your application).
Keep your summary tightly woven around the job and the company at hand. Don’t ramble on about your own needs, your career objectives, or your ideal workplace. Just focus on what you have to offer.
Your summary should be concise and short (three to four lines should be enough). To stay lean, cut out empty buzzwords and limit your use of adverbs.
Keep your graduation dates clear and visible. Include all degree programs you’ve completed, plus certifications, courses, seminars, and independent learning sessions that involved teachers or coursework. Don’t fail to include the programs you haven’t yet completed, or the ones in which you recently enrolled. Just make sure your expected completion dates are stated clearly.
Under each previous position, briefly list the primary responsibilities you handled while you held this role, followed by a short list of your proudest accomplishments. But in order to separate yourself from the competition, give more attention to the second then the first. Skip briefly over your basic tasks and use more ink to talk about the awards, achievements and contributions that made you valuable.
Don’t bog down your skills section by listing the skills that will be expected, or constitute the minimum for this job. For example, you may be familiar with the Microsoft office suite, but unless you’re unusually proficient with Excel or word, save this space for the skills that set you apart. For example, your foreign language skills, your iOS, EPIC or CNC background, or the clinical skills your competitors aren’t likely to offer.
For more on how to extend the reach of your resume while staying within the bounds of ethics and honesty, contact the job search pros at Cordia.