With millions of people unemployed right now, this is a great time to consider updating your resume. To help you, we have selected 7 professional tips for writing a CV.
As COVID-19 continues to wreak havoc on communities and economies around the world, millions of people remain unemployed due to the pandemic and economic uncertainty. Going forward, many people across the country will need to update their resumes in preparation for the application and hiring process. We chatted with Master Instructor Ken Underhill of career development and cybersecurity training company Cybrary to discuss resume writing tips and candidate common mistakes. We’ve listed some of these top resume writing tips and other information below.
Keep it simple
A resume is a candidate’s first chance to make a lasting impression. Unfortunately, this window of opportunity is historically limited. It has been estimated that hiring managers typically spend around seven seconds reviewing a resume. For this reasoning, it is important to provide as much crucial information as possible for the sake of brevity. Underhill reiterated this logic and highlighted formatting tips to help strategically compartmentalize this information.
“We have to hook them up and then get them to read everything else about it. So that could be a sentence. It could be a few bullets, but it sure shouldn’t be like 24 bullets that they have to look through.” , Underhill said.
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Consider summarizing the main duties of the job in a few key points. In such a limited format, every word carries enormous weight, so choose your words wisely and pick your places to use job description keywords and maybe illustrate your personality.
Show your past impact
While it is imperative to include past experience and duties, other details are often omitted in standard resumes. Underhill emphasized the importance of including his past impact in these individual career notes. To demonstrate this, think about the lasting impression you had in a previous role and what that means for the position you hope to land.
âWhen I interviewed these hiring managers and recruiters, what I found is that it doesn’t matter your font, it doesn’t matter your pretty graphics,â Underhill said. âWhat matters is that they can quickly see in those five to seven seconds, the impact you can have, and is that odd enough or is there enough detail in there that ‘they say let me look at this further. “
To help, Underhill discussed a hypothetical scenario involving a project manager in a previous post. Rather than writing down the duties of the position, he suggested explaining how the person cut costs by citing specific numbers in that previous role. This adds a concrete and data-driven component to the candidate profile.
When updating a CV or writing a new document, it often makes sense to consider the fundamentals of the application process as a whole. In the digital age, it’s easy to apply en masse for dozens of positions by uploading the same resume to many recruiting sites. However, a better understanding of a particular company could help determine the next steps in the application process.
âWhen you apply for jobs and are actually ready to apply for jobs with the company, do more research on that company,â Underhill said. âPeople don’t do this for some strange reason anymore, but do a lot of research into the company and figure out how your job or role would actually fit. [with] the company. “
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Know your audience
Once a candidate has a better understanding of a company’s culture, values, and direction, they can then tailor the resume to that particular position. Potential employees can also add keywords to the job description and really convey their past impact based on the tasks inherent in this new role. Underhill emphasized keeping the audience in mind during the resume writing process.
âPut yourself in the other person’s shoes. So not just the hiring manager, but the organization, executives, etc. And think, OK when they look at my CV, what do they want to see? ourselves, but we really have to take a step back and say, okay, what do they want to see? Said Underhill.
Underhill said some candidates include graphics and sometimes even add portraits to their CVs. However, Underhill advised against including these components. If a hiring manager is interested, they can (and probably will) search for candidates online and browse their social media and professional networking sites. Underhill suggested allowing the recruiter or hiring manager to find candidates online where individuals can market themselves better.
Leverage your personal brand
This element of personal branding is essential during the application and hiring process. In the age of social media, the resume serves as a stepping stone into a candidate’s world. If an individual’s resume makes the first cut, hiring managers can then take to a candidate’s social media for more information. Therefore, social media channels from LinkedIn to Twitter are powerful tools for personal branding. Posting or sharing insightful media and concepts allows applicants to illustrate their interests and personality.
“It doesn’t matter whether you are just graduating from high school or college. If you could position yourself as a thought leader, then jobs will pursue you, you won’t have to chase them.” said Underhill.
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Show your skills and training
Individuals should also provide information relating to recent training and micro-accreditations. With millions of people unemployed, there are many organizations offering free online training courses to help people upgrade during the coronavirus pandemic. Demonstrating this proactive retooling between positions can help differentiate candidates from other candidates in the months to come.
âIf you show that you are constantly learning, it shows that passion and you can’t really train the passion at all. You can train people on skills, [but] you can’t train that passion, that thirst for learning, âUnderhill said.