Today’s fluctuating job market can be more than just competitive. It can be downright cutthroat. If you’re searching for a job, you should be proactive and ambitious no matter how many potential candidates are vying for the same position. Using the right words is a powerful way to improve your resume. And it should go without saying that there better not be any grammatical errors in your cover letter or resume, or it won’t matter how well qualified you might be. Learning how to optimize your resume is the key to getting your foot in the door. Interviews are not typically the time when employers decide if you’re qualified or not as that is the purpose of your resume. You won’t get interviewed unless you’re qualified, so your resume needs to demonstrate your capabilities clearly and in a way that you will be able to elucidate during your interview.
Identify with the Company
Get to know the company you want to work for before you submit your resume. Do your homework online and see if you can estimate the company culture and how well you might fit in. Use the same words in your resume that they use to describe their business. Read the mission statement, executive profiles, company history, and find out who their clients are. If you have your heart set on working for a specific company, align your goals to match theirs. Learn what makes the company successful and use that information to incorporate the same messaging in your cover letter and resume.
Play Up your Qualifications
This is not to say you should deceive anyone about your competencies, but building your resume is the time when it’s okay to brag, try to do so humbly, and be self-promotional. With the right wording and resume template you should be able to tailor your resume to accentuate your qualifications. You need to make your work experience match the job description. For example, if a company is looking for the best person who can perform X. There could be several applicants who can perform X just as well as you, so you need to emphasize your abilities by touting your personal accomplishments and credentials to describe how well you qualify for the position.
Use Key Words and Numbers
A hiring manager is looking for specific points of interest on your resume. If they don’t see what they’re looking for in less than one minute, your resume will go into the slush pile. Using key words and numbers are critical so you have to make them stand out. When it comes to listing your college education, don’t blend in, stand out. Mention the number of clubs or projects you were involved in or how many internships you completed. Use power phrases and action verbs in a meaningful way. Be specific and use dates and/or percentages to further highlight your potential. Use bullet points with key accomplishments or skills such as:
- Assessed company changes.
- Improved company directives.
- Planned budgets.
- Trained X number of employees.
- Organized company mergers.
- Launched new market or product.
- Directed clients.
- Managed sales team.
- Effective Development of.
- Increased, Forecasted, Introduced.
- Executive skills in, VP of.
Use a Resume Template
By using a digital resume template, you can easily change and upload a new and improved copy quickly. It’s also good practice to keep records and copies of what company has what resume. Depending on the job description, you can modify any resume to improve your chances of being hired.
Post Your Resume Online
Though most people only create and submit their resumes to companies they hope to work for, many job searchers have found great success by posting their resumes on sites like LinkedIn, which also allows job seekers to share their professional stories by sharing portfolios, videos, and more. Posting your resume online will allow you to attract potential employers and will also open the doors to new opportunities that you did not know existed.