By Anish Majumdar, Certified Professional Resume Writer
What separates a homemade resume from one prepared by a CPRW (Certified Professional Resume Writer)? It’s a question I’m frequently asked when speaking with potential clients. Although there’s a host of skills required in order to gain certification, some of the most common strategies I use can be applied by anyone. In most cases, these go against “popular thinking” when it comes to developing a resume. That’s as it should be. The first thing any job candidate should understand is that 90 percent of what you hear about resumes on the Internet has little-to-no bearing on what actually works. Here are three strategies that do:
1. Repetition isn’t always a bad thing.
How many times have you heard that you should never repeat information within a resume? In actuality, this is only partially true. Sure, rehashing the same job responsibilities over and over in your resume will make any reader’s eyes glaze over. However, identifying three to four key skills that you’re particularly adept in (and which are in-demand by employers) and playing them up in an opening section and in the last few positions you’ve held is a powerful way to establish a “personal theme” for the document. This approach helps differentiate you from the competition by answering the question, “What sets me apart?“
2. Old positions don’t matter.
A reader will spend the bulk of his or her time analyzing positions you’ve held within the past 10-12 years. If your resume doesn’t succeed within this timeframe, it doesn’t succeed period. Separate job responsibilities from concrete accomplishments to really get the message across for these relevant positions. Eliminate everything else, or place it within an “Additional Experience” section with a maximum of one to two bullets per job.
3. Content trumps visuals every time.
A resume that has lousy formatting and an ineffective layout, but is rich in content will land interviews. Don’t waste undue amounts of time trying to be flashy or shelling out for customized resume templates. Focus on communicating key skills, integrating relevant industry keywords, and soliciting feedback prior to submitting for jobs.
About the Author
Anish Majumdar is a Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW) and Owner at www.ResumeOrbit.com. 95% of clients report a significant increase in interviews within 30 days, and all work comes backed by a 100% Satisfaction or Money Back Guarantee (in writing).