Making sure that your resume stands out from the competition and gets picked by the employer is hard. In fact, with the invention of online job search engines and electronic resume submission, it is much easier for employers to use computer software to find the best candidate. Plus, the sheer number of applicants has grown for most positions. This can make it difficult to catch the eye of a recruiter who is going through multiple resumes for just one job. Below are a few ways to make your resume stand out and get noticed.
1. Tailor your Resume
In most cases, a generic resume is not going to catch the eye of the average recruiter. However, a resume that is tailored to a specific position can and will grab their attention. Most recruiters want to know that you thoroughly read the job posting and you understand what they need in a potential employee. In fact, you should take the time to tailor your resume to the company and job.
On the one hand, tailoring a resume to every job you want to apply to can be a time consuming and tedious process. On the other hand, it will be worth your time to make a few key changes to your resume so that it stands out from the competition. One way to do this is to use keywords from the job posting that are relevant to your experience. Another way to accomplish this is to figure out what the company is looking for in an employee and ensure that your skill set is related to the job. This is a great way to ensure that your resume lands on the top of the pile.
2. Emphasize Accomplishments
A great way to emphasize your accomplishments is to use power verbs when describing your past employment experiences. Use these power verbs to point out how you added value or solved a problem in your previous roles. Start phrases with words like “initiated,” “increased,” improved,” or “resolved.” These words help you go beyond your previous duties and emphasize results.
3. Prove your Skill Set
One of the most important parts of your resume is the place where you list your skill set. This is where you will want to focus on the skills that relate to the job you are applying for. However, you can take this one step further can back your skills up with proof. Don’t just say you have communication skills, state that you can communicate in a cross-cultural setting. This is a perfect way to impress that recruiter looking at tons of different resumes.
4. Use Industry Keywords
In some cases, recruiters will use software to scan resumes that are submitted electronically. These software programs will search for keywords from the job posting or relevant job experience. In other cases, recruiters simply don’t have the time to read you resume in detail. Rather, they quickly scan every resume looking for keywords. Making sure that your resume has those keywords help you get noticed and makes your resume look more professional.
5. Use a Header
Don’t forget to put the most important information of your resume first. This can be accomplished with a header. This space is where you can include your name and contact information, such as phone number, address, and email. Some people even include a link to their website, LinkedIn account or social media pages. This is a simple, yet effective, way to grab the attention of a recruiter. A header also brings your resume together and gives it a refined look.
6. Include Metrics
Another way to make sure that your resume stands out from the competition is to use metrics. Instead of saying that you increase the sale of the last company you worked for, state by how much you increased those sales. Using numbers, percentages, and other data help a recruiter see that you could potentially bring those result to their company.
7. Double Check for Errors
Finally, make sure that your resume is 100% error free and easy to read. Most recruiters equate grammar mistakes or misspellings with laziness. Ensure that your resume is polished and free of errors – use Grammarly.com for extra help. This free service will check for spelling mistakes and grammar error that most spellcheck programs miss.