The most effective resume is a branding document showcases a job seeker’s previous experience in a way where a prospective employer can see how the job seeker’s expertise can work within their organization. When this happens, the prospective employer sees how the job seeker’s experience can help their organization achieve results and will call the job seeker in for an interview. A traditional resume, that only houses job duties, does not outline achievements and is visually boring cannot stand up to a well-branded resume.
There are three things that differentiate a branded, contemporary resume from a more traditional one
Can your resume ensure that you are found in an online search by a prospective employer, whether that resume resides in an applicant tracking system (ATS) or is the basis of your keyword optimized LinkedIn profile? A successful job search in today’s times has two active components. The first component is to perform the actions that help you find the right job. The second is to include the activities needed to enable the right job to find you. A keyword-optimized resume that is searchable enables hiring managers and recruiters to find you when looking for talent with your skill set.
In this digital age of LinkedIn, Facebook, and online resume pages, finding the perfect candidate is driven by various search engines. It is absolutely vital for your resume to house keywords and phrases used by hiring managers in searches so your resume can be found. If your resume can’t be found, it won’t be read and you will not land an interview; it’s that simple.
If you don’t know what terms to include, use an employment website or job board to look for positions in which you are interested. Including the phrases and words from these postings naturally in your resume, alongside your achievements for each of those functions will improve the likelihood that your resume will be found in employer searches.
Every job seeker out there today needs quantifiable results on their resume. Results are what employers want, and in order to sell yourself, you need to demonstrate what you were able to achieve. Here are some examples of questions you might ask yourself to help define your results:
- If you upgraded software, what were the labor cost savings? How much employee payroll time was saved by the conversion?
- If you launched a marketing campaign for a major consumer products firm, what was the ROI on the marketing dollars spent for the product launch? In what time frame was the profit/revenue realized?
- If you managed a pharmaceutical drug development department, how many drugs did you bring to market? What revenues did those products generate? How long was the process?
Size and Scope
Understanding the size and scope of your previous companies helps the hiring manager determine how you can fit into their organization. Saying you did something without the context to support the statement leaves a gap in understanding. Tell your prospective employer about the environment in which you performed these tasks. Here are some examples of how to put size and scope into each point on your resume:
- Did you manage an IT department of three, thirty or one hundred and thirty employees?
- What was the technology budget that you were accountable for--$10,000, $100,000 or $1,000,000?
- How much savings did your last three IT initiatives generate?
- How many new employees did the 10-person team you supervised get promoted in the past twelve months?
There is no right or wrong answer to any of these questions, but it starts to flesh out the details of the types of environments in which you have performed, and paint a picture for the prospective employer.
Your resume is part of your employment brand and it needs to tell the story of your experience, achievements, and include information about the environments in which you worked. Additionally, what it says about you should be reflected in a consistent manner on your LinkedIn profile, Facebook page, and online resume page. This ensures that you are found in job searches, can demonstrate that you achieved measurable results, and that you are the excellent fit that the hiring managers are seeking.
Written by Lisa Rangel, Executive Resume Writer