January is one of the best times of year to find a new job. Hiring managers are looking to fill open positions and now have the budgets they need to do so. With the spirit of the New Year, these individuals are also seeking to facilitate change in the office.
Many job seekers too are looking for change in the form of a new job. Whatever the reason – more money, greater flexibility, a new boss or an increase in responsibility – getting a new job ranks as a common New Year’s resolution. With so many positions opening up and candidates applying for them, a job-winning resume is crucial to getting the hiring manager’s attention.
Top Three Tips for Getting Your Resume Writing Noticed in the New Year
Clean Formatting – Human resources professionals and hiring managers are scanning through hundreds, yes hundreds, of resumes and cover letters sorting the wheat from the chaff. They are looking for a quick way to discard applicants, and poor resume formatting is often the easiest option.
Is your resume formatting sloppy with misaligned text and tables, letter fonts and sizes that are all over the place, spacing that is way too much or way too little? Does your resume writing use 8-point font and extend to the margins? Resumes such as these that are hard to read are often the first to be discarded.
Does Your Resume Opening Grab the Reader? The first few lines of your resume should capture the reader’s attention. Here, you need to both clearly state the purpose of the resume and what you bring to the table. Much like an advertisement, this space is first and foremost where you must sell yourself. The remainder of your resume writing supports the claim you make here.
You are not alone if you find this hard to do. It is difficult to sum up your career history and all you’ve accomplished in one or two lines. Yet this is what job-winning resumes do, and this is what will best get the attention of time-strapped hiring managers.
Proper Use of Resume Keywords – In today’s digital age, the first person to read your resume may not be a person at all but an Applicant Tracking System (ATS). These computer systems scan resume keywords, and those without the right ones are likely to be discarded into a digital wasteland.
Now we could draft an entire article on using the right resume keywords and getting past these scanners. For simplicity’s sake you should include a keyword or “area of expertise” section in the resume writing that lists these words or phrases. Top keywords should also be placed contextually throughout the resume.
Whether you are an active or passive job seeker, January is an ideal time to update your resume and put yourself in the market. Finding a new job is rarely easy but statistically, the start of the year bodes well for most job seekers.
Need a New Resume That Grabs the Hiring Manager’s Attention?
86 Keys Communications creates results-getting resumes, cover letters, LinkedIn profiles and related resume writing services for job seekers of every industry and experience level. Contact them today at firstname.lastname@example.org.