Update Your Resume Before You Start Your Job Search

Your resume is your gateway. More often than not this is the first thing a future employer will see. This is your ticket to the interview before landing that job you’re after. That is why before starting the job hunt it might be time to dust off, update and edit that resume.

The best resumes will show that there is some focus in your professional history. If a resume seems a little lofty or all over the place, it might be hard for an employer to look at your history with confidence for whatever position you are looking to fill. Sometimes your resume will need to be tweaked to highlight your skills for specific responsibilities of a position. One resume may not apply to every job you apply to if you are looking for various positions within your field. If you are applying to a marketing position, be sure to cater and edit your resume to show that there is focus within your qualifications for the responsibilities of that job.

It is absolutely necessary to have a resume that has correct formatting and is free from errors. When it comes to resume formats there are a variety to choose from that reflect your professional experiences best. There are three resume formats; chronological, functional and hybrid. The most common is the chronological which shows your accomplishments in a timely manner and demonstrates your most recent accomplishments as your best. A chronological resume works best if you are applying to the same or similar position within your field.

If you are making a change in your career path it may be best to follow the guidelines of a functional resume. This puts your relevant work experience at the top of the page. However, keep in mind that if not formatted correctly your resume might come off more confusing than you intend.

This is why the hybrid resume is a perfect blend, allowing a future employer to see your work experience in a timely matter but also gives you an opportunity to showcase the skills most required for the job you’re seeking. Although this format can be a challenge to write. It is important to keep the  focus of your resume clear and concise. .

Any error on your resume (or cover letter), whether it be content or grammar,  will say to an employer that you might have a lack of attention to detail. Be sure your punctuation stays consistent throughout the entirety of the resume. Check your spelling and make sure that any name used is spelled correctly. Although a basic rule of thumb, making sure your resume is pristine is fundamentally important.

Give special attention to the section of your resume that showcases your accomplishments. This is where you have the opportunity to tell a future employer exactly how qualified you are for the position. Fine tune these items so a future employer may be able to picture you working for their company or organization based on your previous experiences. Using proper keywords are important. If you can use resources from your school’s career center someone can help you craft this section. If not, there are plenty of resources online to give you some guidance.

Your resume is your most important asset. Keep it updated and tweak to the specifics of the job you’re applying for. Make sure it looks nice and neat, free from any critical errors. Don’t forget to make the focus of your resume as clear as possible. Follow these guidelines and you’ll be getting job opportunities in no time.

Melissa Hindle