By Karen B. Lee - April 15 2018 11:14:01
A resume is the representation of your professional self. It is a concise compilation of your educational and professional experience, as well as the skills that make you desirable for the workforce. It is what you use to sell your merit and skills to potential employers.
A resume is typically sent with a cover letter, which is a document that provides additional information on your skills and experience in letter form. A resume is a concise, often bulleted summary, while a cover letter highlights and expands on certain traits or accomplishments that would be unique or ideal assets for the particular job.
Your goal should be to write your resume with both robots and humans in mind. Many organizations use Applicant Tracking Systems to sort and vet resumes, before hiring managers ever take a look at them. This means that you could have the best experience and qualifications in a whole field of candidates, and a pretty decent resume besides, but your information will fall through the cracks if your resume doesn’t contain the right keywords. Good keywords will refer not only to your experience but to the job description in the posting as well.
An effective resume lays out a summary of qualifications that will push the hiring manager or employer to move forward and invite you to interview for the position. As well as details on skills, education, and work history, resumes can also have optional sections, such as an objective, summary statement, skills, or career highlights. Those sections can be added after you’ve compiled all the factual information you need to list on your resume. For many people, it can be helpful to sit down with a pen and paper, or a blank Word document, and jot down their work history from start to finish. Of course, if you have been in the workforce for many years, this is not going to be time-efficient, so you may choose to focus on your most prominent and relevant positions.
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