Do you wonder why you have been submitting lots of applications and you have not received that call yet? Your resume may be the problem. Gone are the days when you could merely outline all the work you have done on your resume, submit a watered-down resume and pray to get a positive feedback. The job market is highly saturated with many talented individuals, who are seeking employment so… you there! Yes, you! … You have a lot of competition and you need to step up your game!
These days, a lot of companies are sifting resumes with computer software to cut down the number of applicants that they consider. So before your resume gets viewed by a recruiter, a software bot has sieved through your resume to screen whether you fit the requirements or not. This means that the job market has changed drastically.
Here are a few tips to incorporate in order to produce a note-worthy resume:
Google it (www.google.com)
This is not an ad for Google but jokes aside, you need to go on Google or Yahoo or any search engine to look for sample resumes that people have uploaded online. This would give you an idea of where to start from and how to structure your resume. It would also give you an idea of how to write strong bullet points that would convince the recruiter about your skills.
Extra tip: Go to the careers website of a world-renowned university or any good university outside Nigeria. The good thing about these websites is that the career centres of these websites often upload sample resumes for students in their school to emulate, and these samples are free and open to all!
Tailor your resume to the specific job
Many people have just one resume that they use to apply for all their jobs. This is a huge mistake because Employer A may be looking for a different set of skills and experiences from Employer B. This is why you need to tailor your resume to the job that you are applying for. One way to do this is to look at the job requirements, note them down, and highlight these skills and experiences in your resume. This would show the employer that you are fit for the job and that you understand what the job entails.
Include the key words
As mentioned earlier, a lot of multinationals are beginning to use computer software to filter resumes that do not fit the job requirements. This implies that a software bot reviews your resume before the recruiter sees it.
You may be wondering how you can avoid being booted out of the recruitment process by technology. The answer is to make sure that you include the key words! Key words are key skills (e.g communication skills, time management skills, etc.) that are highlighted in the job posting. Make sure you include these key words in your resume and cover letter. The software would screen your application to see if these skills are highlighted. If they are not, your application probably won’t get through.
Extra tip: Don’t just dump these key words on your resume. Ensure that you highlight them effortlessly when writing about your prior work experiences.
Make sure each bullet point on the resume is well thought out and captivating
The aim here is not to lie about your skills but to really sell yourself and the work that you have done. Basically, you want to highlight your accomplishments on the job and not your job function. You want the recruiter to know that you are well able to do the job.
For example, you worked in a call centre job and you want to highlight this on your resume. You can either write it like this “Received calls on a daily basis and spoke with customers” or you can write it this way “Received about 100 customer calls daily and, effectively solved customer complaints, resulting in 98% customer satisfaction rate”. Which do you think is better? Go and judge it by yourself. Please don’t lie oo but if your company measures performance and you can get a hold of your data, please feel free to show it off on your resume.
In summary, highlight your accomplishments and not merely job functions.
Re-read and edit
This may seem like a silly tip but recruiters get irritated when there are spelling or grammatical errors. Make sure you read, edit and check to make sure that your resume reads well and is error free.
Ask a trusted individual to review your resume
No man is an island. You need to ask for help. Please look for a professional that you trust and respect and ask them to review your resume when you are done with it. They’ll pinpoint areas for improvement and help you edit and re-phrase your sentences better.
Trust in the Lord with ALL your heart
I cannot emphasize this point enough. God is the beginning and end of all things. Make sure He is involved in your job search and consult Him in prayers every step of the way. He alone knows the way through the wilderness. Read His promises for you and your success in His word and hold on to them. Don’t be afraid, don’t pay attention to the giants in the way, and don’t cave in to fear or doubt. Focus on God’s power and ability to give you that dream job. God has got your back and He will give you your heart’s desires.
Note: God helps people who have submitted their lives to His Lordship, so ensure that you have given your life to Jesus and accepted Him as your Lord and Saviour, in order to enjoy the full benefits of being a child of God.
I sincerely hope that you have gotten a few pointers to writing that note-worthy resume. Until next time!