How to Update Your Resume

Update Your Resume | How-to & Tips | Resume.comresumeshow-to-update-resume

It is important to follow current formatting rules when updating your resume as you apply for a new position. Depending on when you last applied for a role, the best practices for writing a resume may have changed. Learn how to properly update your resume by following the steps in this article.

Why it’s important to update your resume

Knowing how to update your resume allows you to showcase your skills and qualifications relevant to the position you are pursuing. Maintaining your skill relevancy helps your resume stand out and increases your chances of being invited to interview. An updated resume allows employers to align the job posting requirement with your skills and abilities.

Each time you apply for a new position, update your resume with any new education, certifications, experience, and other qualifications. This keeps your resume up to date and demonstrates the knowledge and skillset you’ve developed that make you prepared for the role. It also helps you ensure that you continue to tailor your resume to be as relevant as possible to each job application.

How to update your resume

Follow the steps to properly update your resume in a way that stands out to employers.

1. First, include your current contact information

If you haven’t updated your resume since the last time you applied for jobs, you may need to add your current email address, phone number, and a link to your online portfolio. Employers used to request contact information like a physical address or headshot. Because these are usually no longer required, remove this information from your resume unless requested.

2. Second, locate and add keywords from the job posting

As you build your resume, consistently review the job posting and identify the preferred qualifications the employer mentions. Use these as keywords and feature them throughout your resume. In the experience section of your resume, explain how you currently apply specific skills. This demonstrates how you plan to use them in this role. Employers are regularly searching for keywords in their job posting. Including keywords throughout your resume increases the likelihood of being asked to interview.

3. Third, draft an updated summary

Make sure your summary reflects the skills and experience you’ve gained since the last time you applied for a position. Suppose you were a recent graduate or were applying to entry-level roles the last time you updated your resume. In that case, you may have written this section in an objective-style format, meaning you likely mentioned your career goals instead of your accomplishments.

As you gain new skills and achievements, revise this section to be more of a summary instead of an objective. Explain the experience you’ve gained in your previous positions and how you plan to use them in this new role. Add keywords found in the job posting to make this section relevant to the job and impress the hiring manager.

4. Fourth, feature any new skills you’ve developed

As you review the skills section of your resume, keep only the skills that you believe bring value to the role. Remove any skills that may no longer relate to the position. For example, listing general computer skills is most likely unnecessary because computers are standard in many workplaces.

It’s more impressive to mention specific programs or systems you work with to accomplish tasks. Mention these skills in their own section and add them to your work history when explaining duties and responsibilities. Provide details on how you used each skill to excel in your role.

5. Fifth, add your work history

Refer to the job posting again to learn what kind of experience employers prefer for this position and what duties you’ll be expected to complete. If you’ve held similar responsibilities in your current or previous roles, mention them in your work history section. To avoid clutter, remove any work experience that isn’t relevant to the duties and responsibilities of the position you’re applying to.

Be specific when adding your work history by mentioning the skills used to complete different tasks and using numbers or data to quantify your accomplishments. This also helps employers understand the results you brought your company and what value you’ll bring to theirs.

6. Sixth, list any additional education or certifications you’ve received

Add other qualifications you’ve gained since you last updated your resume. This can include degrees or courses you’ve taken to advance your knowledge and skillset. If you previously included your high school diploma, you can now remove it. Most employers are more interested in degrees received from colleges or trade schools.

Include any certifications you’ve received that are listed as requirements in the job posting or may enhance your performance in the role. For example, if you’re applying for a position in marketing and have received training and certifications for a popular marketing software, you can highlight them in your certifications section.

7. Seventh, ensure your formatting and style are consistent

After you’ve applied your updates with current information, you might consider changing the style of your resume. Apply a new font or color palette that remains consistent throughout the document. Keep the resume clean and simple, making it easy for employers to identify information. Balance your use of white space and text.

For example, if you previously had paragraphs in your experience section detailing your work duties, replace them with bullet points that briefly state your tasks and responsibilities. This helps your resume look organized and free of clutter. It also makes it easier for the hiring manager to find and read through the most important information.

8. Finally, proofread your resume for relevance and grammatical errors

Now you are ready to read through your resume to ensure it’s free from spelling or grammatical errors. Make sure all phrases are relevant to current resume practices. For example, phrases like “references upon request” are no longer necessary on a resume. After removing any outdated phrases, have a friend or trusted colleague review your resume to ensure it’s consistent and simple to understand.

Print both your resume and the job posting. Review these documents side-by-side to ensure your resume aligns well with the position. As the hiring manager spots relevant keywords, it can encourage them to read through your entire document rather than simply scanning it.

If you need help writing a resume, use our data-backed resume builder.