Putting together an effective resume is one of the single most important first steps in claiming a good job. There are so many ways to build a resume, however, that identifying the most effective can be challenging. Throw in the possibility of little to no experience and this can be one of the most confusing and difficult steps in the whole job hunt.
Let’s take that possibility first, that of having little to no experience. Most jobs require prior experience in order to even be considered. This can lead to a seemingly insurmountable obstacle for recent graduates, as well as those looking to enter int a new career.
In a situation like this, the best course of action would be to list any volunteer work you may have performed, which is tied to the field you are looking to enter. Other effective pieces of information to put down are any professional associations you may have, awards, extracurricular activities and even relevant course work you had in high school or college. While you do not want to fill this area with fluff, it should definitely not be left blank or scarcely populated.
The next step is to ensure that your resume is organized and does not exceed two pages. Rarely is a resume given close scrutiny the first time around. Usually the initial consideration is comprised of about twenty seconds of skimming.. If your resume is put together well and easy to read, chances are that it will make it to the second round.
When listing work experience that you do have, be sure to include not only the bare details themselves, but also any accomplishments you may have achieved. Many times, a perspective employer is looking for someone to help them with a specific problem, or area of problems. If your resume reflects that you have experience tied directly to the specifics of what they want, you are much more likely to be chosen.
Another good tip to remember is to swap out the traditional Objective statement with a Career Summary. The Objective is too general, usually simply stating that you are looking for a challenging job in that particular field that allows you to use your skills to contribute to the company. This information is covered in detail in the body of your resume, rendering it unnecessary.
A Career Summary, on the other hand, gives you the perfect opportunity to slip in exactly how you can deal with the problems they are looking to overcome, as well as any supporting evidence of similar past experiences. While this is also covered in the body of the resume, the fact that this will be the first thing they read makes it a must. As indicated before, that twenty seconds of skimming that the average human resources employee performs needs to be maximized as much as possible.
Writing an effective resume does not have to be an exercise in frustration or futility, with many powerful tools and tips available the internet over. Do you have a specific tip that you have found to be eminently effective in the past? Let us know in the Comments section below!
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