Experienced specialists often have a problem when writing a resume: they don't want what information to include and what facts are better to be off the document. Even entry-level job seekers sometimes face similar issues. Since the job search game has changed in the past years to match the employers' requirements, the task of selecting the right kind of information to include onto a resume has become even more difficult. Therefore, if you really want to land a few job interviews, you should keep up with current demands of the recruiters. Otherwise, other candidates will take your spot. Today we would like to concentrate on the most important things that should be on every resume. These blocks of information are expected by hiring managers so if you fail to have them on your main marketing document, don't count on an interview.
Three Must-Have Resume Components
1. Clear and customized message to the employer. The time when job seekers sent out their resumes to hundreds of employers and somehow landed interviews ended. Such an approach isn't effective anymore (there is a question whether it ever was effective though). By a customized message we basically mean information that matters most to hiring managers. Use your resume (cover letter) as a chance to answer the specific needs of the company you are applying to. There many ways how you can find out what your prospective employer is looking for - visit the company's website, talk to one of the employees, study job description, etc. Responding to the needs of prospective employers is the key to effective resume writing practices. So customized message is basically you explaining how your background and past experience can help the company reach its objectives in your resume.
2. Keywords. The current trend of using keywords is gaining more and more popularity today. A couple of years ago, incorporating keywords was a good thing to do. Nowadays, it is more of a necessity as many recruiters use online tools (including social media) to hunt for candidates. They track keywords (industry specific words and word combinations) to find resumes that contain relevant information. This automatically means that if you want to be successful in your job search, you have to incorporate job title, key industry-specific skills and terms in your application documents. It will accomplish a two-fold purpose: 1) your resume will have more chances to successfully get past ATS (applicant tracking software) used by some of the companies 2) employers and recruiters will be able to find you more quickly when you post your resume online.
3. Numbers and figures. Job seekers love to talk about themselves both on their resumes and during interviews. However, very few hiring managers actually pay attention to long descriptive talks/statements. But if job seekers want to impress hiring managers and demonstrate the impact and value they could potentially bring, they should quantify all of those talks about achievements. What sounds more convincing: "Helped the company grow revenues" or "Initiated process improvement tools that increased operations efficiency resulting in revenue increase by $1,937,000"? If any of your achievement can be quantified, do that. That will definitely help you stand out the candidates who will be generically bragging about how good they are.