If you’ve been unemployed for a while, getting back into the swing of things can be quite challenging. For one reason or another, you have some gaps in your employment, and you need to figure out a way to impress your prospective employers with your past experience. Here at Tempstar Staffing, we want you to find the best possible position, no matter what your current situation is. We also want you to succeed in your own personal job search. Here’s some tips on crafting a great resume to help.
Reorganize Resume Sections
If you have completed education that you’re really proud of, stick it at the top. A good rule of thumb is to always put your latest education levels at the top of your resume if it is beyond high school (i.e. a trade school or college/university). If you have some specific career-related experience that wholly applies to the job you’re applying for, make that section #2.
Follow that up with relevant skills that you’ve learned throughout your life as well as in your job experience. This may include Microsoft Office proficiency, experience with using computers, experience with operating a particular machine, or anything relevant to the position.
Finally, list the top two or three most-recent positions you’ve held. This gives your resume a wide variety, especially if you’ve worked in multiple industries. Extra skills are always a plus.
Keep It to One Page
If your resume is overloaded and ends up being three pages long, cut it down to one. Studies have shown that hiring managers only spend an average of six seconds reading an applicant’s resume. They will hit the important sections, where the job requirements are found, and gloss over the smaller details. A one-page “espresso shot” works well when you notice this trend. Convenience is top priority here.
If there is additional information that you think would help score you the job, try and offer it to the hiring manager during interviews.
Change the Design
Bland resumes are often hard to read, and prospective employers lose interest when nothing exciting catches their eye. The design plays a very important part in maintaining attention. If your resume is pure text with no lines or bold letters enunciating important sections, the blandness sets in almost immediately.
Experiment with a variety of templates; Microsoft Word comes with quite a number of them, so take your pick, but choose carefully.
It’s also important to remember that, especially if the position doesn’t require it, don’t put graphics on your resume. Unless you are a graphic designer or web developer applying for a position in your field, big gaudy stock photos damage the integrity of your resume!
Optimize Your Sections with Keywords
Use important industry-relevant keywords that apply to the position you are interested in. Many hiring managers nowadays use software to help them scan incoming resumes for valuable keywords build towards their industry. Your resume may not even be considered if you don’t include a few in your skills and experience. The job listing you found for the job is a good source for important keywords.
Remove Your Objective
We’ve mentioned this before in previous blog posts, but if the body of your resume is good, you won’t need that first section: your objective (if you have one). Objectives are redundant and use up important time for the hiring manager to view the more valuable sections of your resume. Instead of wasting valuable space, focus on taking that objective and working it into the rest of your resume. Make it known what you’re good at and what specific role you would shine in. If you are a good match for the job, your resume will show it. It could help cut down your resume to one page, too!