Archive for the ‘Resume Examples’ Category
A friend of mine who was looking to change careers asked me last week for some ideas of tailoring his resume to expedite his search. Here’s what I told him, and this advice is for you too. Here are two examples but there are many; always keep in mind whether you are in sales or management this applies; “sales are sales”; if you know how to sell the product is incidental. Same is true of management. A personal friend of mine worked in management in six or seven different companies, all different products. If you understand people, “management is management”, only the product changes. If you are a machinist and run a lathe; you can be easily trained to run a mill or drill-press.
If you are seeking a job in a new area, you should first identify and describe any previous work experience in the best light possible while identifying the most relevant duties performed. Job descriptions are no longer seen as helpful ways for employers to evaluate potential employers, and many of them are looking for accomplishment-focused phrases and results-oriented statements. So tailor your resumes toward this.
Using Action Verbs in Resumes
Use action verbs. These are words that are used specifically in resumes to accurately and succinctly indicate what a job applicant accomplished in their last position. These phrases begin with an action word such as designed, sold or instructed and leave out unnecessary words such as the, a and also. The phrases sound crisp and leave the distinct impression that you have been active.
The best action verbs depend on the specific job duties you performed, but some example action verbs could include: billed, wrote, supervised, managed, analyzed, directed, trained, planned, taught, developed, maintained, organized, initiated or produced. When you write your resume you should pick one verb for each line and then elaborate.
Accomplishments to Mention on a Resume
If you haven’t had to look for a job for several years – you may have a difficult time figuring out which of their past accomplishments are best to focus on when choosing the action words for their resumes.
These questions may help when trying to determine which verbs are best to describe the results of each pertinent job duty:
- Did I improve efficiency – how?
- How did I perform the job better than expected?
- Did I implement anything new that benefited the organization?
- Did I receive any awards or special recognition as a result of past performance?
Tips When Changing Careers
Researching the new field or profiling the specific job the applicant is looking for is the most important aspect of changing careers. The more knowledge you have about the company the better your chance to market your existing skills. By using the Internet, research has never been easier. Employers are impressed by applicants who have taken the time to find out about their businesses.
With so many individuals competing for jobs, the only thing that will differentiate you from the rest of the equally qualified crowd is what you achieved while on the job. But be warned—an accomplishment must be quantified in order to hold any weight with the hiring manager or recruiter.
Too many times an individual writes: “Reorganized an entire department per management instructions.” That’s not an accomplishment, that is a daily duty. An accomplishment would read: “Generated savings in excess of $25,000 annually by reorganizing the marketing department and employing temp workers rather than full-time staff.” This speaks to what a hiring manager and/or recruiter wants to see: how you can make them money and how you can save them money.
To further strengthen your resume, make certain to put at least one, preferably two, quantified and relevant accomplishments in the Qualifications Summary. This is especially true if you use the word “proven” to describe yourself. For example, you write: “Accounting professional with comprehensive experience and proven results in negotiations with the IRS.”
Proven by whom? You? That’s not enough proof for a hiring manager or recruiter. They want more. It’s better to write: “Accounting professional with comprehensive experience and proven results in negotiations with the IRS as evidenced by the $0.5 million in savings, resulting from the 2009 audit.”
The above clearly states that you saved your company a half-million dollars through your expertise. That speaks volumes to hiring managers and puts you well above the others competing for the same position.
Hiring managers routinely receive hundreds, perhaps thousands, of responses from applicants for any given job. To avoid having your resume sink into this sea of paper, it’s imperative to stand out from the crowd and make a good first impression. A compelling cover letter that meets five essential requirements will convince a hiring manager to read an applicant’s resume.
Rule #1: Create appealing appearance
The resume and cover letter must be aesthetically pleasing and consistent in appearance. This includes using the same heading and fonts for each.
Rule #2: Target your audience
Always use the hiring manager’s name in the salutation. If the contact’s name isn’t provided in the job posting, a bit of Internet research or a well-structured phone call can produce results.
Rule #3: Produce a strong opening
A dynamic opening paragraph is essential to capture and retain a hiring manager’s interest. Pared down to essentials for a quick and effective read, it should reference the position you are seeking and include a brief statement as to why you believe you are qualified to fill the job.
Rule #4: Showcase accomplishments
Include a bulleted area to emphasize accomplishments pertinent to the targeted job.
Rule #5: Close with a proactive statement
Always initiate further action at the end of a cover letter. A proactive closing indicates that you will call within a few days to see if a time might be scheduled to meet. Then, be sure to follow through on the action you include in your letter.