Posted on 22 January 2020
Like a bespoke suit, there’s nothing sharper than a tailored resume. Indeed, go to any jobsearch portal, or ask any recruiter, and they will constantly emphasise how important it is to fit your resume for the job you are applying for.
Remember, hiring managers are not looking for an all-round superstar, but someone who can do the job as stated in the job description. That means your resume should answer that question as directly and clearly as possible.
Tailoring your resume means taking out a lot of the irrelevant and unnecessary information, and writing in such a way as to answer the question: “why should you be hired?” A good resume is easy for the recruiter to read through, and hence increases your chance of an interview.
Also, with ATS (Applicant Tracking Systems) in use, a resume with the right keywords gets through the filter more easily.
But how exactly to go about making your resume fit?
Firstly, we understand you may not be able to write a completely new resume for every position, nor should you have to.
However, we recommend that you tailor your resume by industry if not by position. You can do this by moving around your qualifications and previous work experience so that the industry-specific information is more prominent.
For example, if you are applying for a tech position that requires a knowledge of certain software or code, you may wish to write a “skill-centric” resume that places your relevant qualifications first rather than your previous job.2. Use Keywords
Also, remember to use keywords from the job description when describing your qualifications and experiences. Read through the job listing carefully. Then, edit your resume so that it describes your achievements in ways that align with the job posting. Address all of the keywords that you find in the listing, and you can feel confident that you've submitted an A+ resume.
For example, a candidate for a HR position might submit the following: “over 5 years of experience in managing employee benefit plans and HR policies for a company of 40 employees”. The keywords would be phrases like “HR policies” and “employee benefit plans”.
(But be careful not to simply copy-and-paste keywords into your resume! That may pass the resume through the ATS system, but it must still read well to the flesh and blood interviewer.)3. Provide Specific Information
Next, edit how you describe your achievements. Write short, but specific, explanations of your duties. This helps HR departments understand how you performed at your job and what your workload looked like.
Always provide measurable, quantifiable information. For example, as a sales associate, you may have recommended products and services and upsold customers when possible. In this case, you should give firm numbers for how many memberships you convinced customers to sign up for, or how often you exceeded sales quotas.4. Sell Yourself!
Lastly, now is the time to brag! Have you won any awards relevant to the job, or participated in courses or activities that demonstrate desirable soft skills? Remember to add those in. You can also highlight positive feedback you have received from clients or superiors.
We hope that these points have helped you understand how to tailor your resume to fit your applications. Go ahead and write!
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