|Guiding Steps to Your Career: Time to Refresh Your Resume
By Karen Graham, Senior Recruiter
Your resume is the single most important document in the application process. It will position you against an average of 250 other applicants for a corporate job opening. So, it's important to keep your resume updated and ready to go – not only for jobs you want to apply for, but for unexpected opportunities, too. Keeping your resume current will help you gain the attention of recruiters and hiring managers.
Therefore, you should refresh your resume each time you have a new accomplishment, promotion or new role, or are recognized with a new award.
Education – When updating your educational background, be sure to list any new degrees that you've earned or training opportunities that would apply directly to the job you're interested in. Additionally, if you're working on a degree, it's okay to list some of the relevant classes you've completed if there is a direct correlation to the expectations of a given job.
Awards, Credentials and Professional Association Memberships – These certainly need to be outlined under your education. Be sure to indicate credential expiration dates if they apply. Also, keep award listings current – no need to list dates that extend beyond the recommended 10-15 year work history of your resume.
Skills, Job Descriptions – Ensure these are kept up-to-date as your role evolves. Also, remember to add quantifiable results to show not only that you have various responsibilities, but that you also have been successful through your cited accomplishments.
Keywords – Throughout your resume, be sure to use keywords that match the job description for which you want to apply. This will help align your experience with the expectations of an open position and help you stand out from the crowd.
With an updated resume, you are ready to present yourself to a prospective hiring manager or recruiter. Your next step will be to prepare for interviews so that you feel confident and competent and able to articulate your skills as they apply to the jobs you seek.
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