Simply put – in the job world, your resume is your first impression. It is your opportunity to promote yourself in such a way that an employer can’t not invite you for an interview.
Although an irresistible resume isn’t enough to land you your dream job on it’s own, it’s essential in the process. In fact, as tech careers become more and more competitive, the need for a top-notch resume has become increasingly important.
The significance of a solid resume may seem straightforward, but the process of building your solid resume is likely a little puzzling. A quick google search will populate thousands of templates, examples, and do’s and don’ts, but deciding what to believe and implement is where the challenge begins.
Building your resume, and ultimately your career shouldn’t be daunting, it should be exciting – which is why we provide FREE monthly interactive webinars on transferable business skills. Topics covered include resume tips, communication and presentation skills, interviewing tips, personal branding, effective writing, tips to improve your outside-the-box thinking, and more.
There’s no doubt that at IEEE Computer Society, we can attest to the importance of a straightforward, customized, and ultimately, winning resume. Recently, on our social media channels, we asked you what you want to know and how we can help with your resume – and this is what we learned:
- 90% of respondents need help with their resumes
- 40% of respondents haven’t updated their resumes in over 4 months
- 55% of respondents would like to learn more about utilizing their “Strong Skills”
- 65% of respondents find the overall layout of their resumes to be the most difficult
Now’s the time to take a look at our top resume tips that touch on what you want to know, and use your resume to score your dream job.
Why You Need an Updated Resume
There are a handful of reasons you might think you don’t need to update your resume. Let’s say you’re content at your current job and you’re not actively looking for something new, or you updated your resume when you started your recent position, and your title hasn’t changed since.
In those cases, it might seem like updating your resume is a waste of time… right?
Consider the following situations, where even if you’re not using your resume right now, it would be beneficial to have an updated copy.
- Your employer wants to nominate you for an award
- An opportunity for a promotion opens up at your current job
- You have new responsibilities and skills that should be highlighted
- A recruiter or employer finds and pursues you
To put it bluntly, you never know when or why you might need an updated resume, and it’s better to be safe than sorry. So for those of you who haven’t touched your latest version in half a year, take a look!
Look at new skills, challenges, and responsibilities that you can add to your most important piece of promotional material.
The Importance of a Clean-Cut Layout
A couple of to-the-point pages with appropriate spacing, fonts, sizing, and customization is what you’re looking for. Employers shouldn’t have to search for your applicable skills, and they won’t have to with a clean-cut resume.
Your layout should be easily readable at a glance, but the content that follows should be customized to match the job you’ve applied for. Similarly to cover letters, resumes are not one-size-fits-all, and need to be tailored to responsibilities of the specific role.
What are “Strong Skills” and How Should You Highlight Yours?
Don’t hide your skills! Strong skills deserve their own section in your resume, and should be customized to the job description you are applying for.
Consider what business skills make you a better candidate than the rest.
Are they technical? Communication? Business? Computing? If they’re strong and important to the role you’re interested in, mention them.
This is the perfect opportunity to subtly brag about what amazing skills you have that make you the best candidate for this position – take advantage of it and show them what you’re made of.
Don’t forget that if you’re looking to grow your business skills, our Build Your Career Webinar Series is a great place to start!
Pay Attention to the Details
This is not the time to forget to proofread – in fact, it’s the time to proofread again and again. Details such as grammar and punctuation, consistent formatting and fonts, and even “minor” details such as the correct date, are essential.
The time and effort you put into your resume reflect the type of work you produce, and the type of employee you will be.
Taking time to produce your best, punchiest bullet points, crisp and detailed sentences, and ensuring your entire resume is buttoned up will go a long way.
Like we mentioned, an irresistible resume isn’t enough to land you your dream job on it’s own, but it’s essential in the process.
Everything about hiring, from your resume to cover letter, to in-person interviews and beyond, have become more competitive. Ensuring that you are putting your best foot forward is key – and a buttoned up resume is the best place to start.
Now’s the time to update that resume and land your dream job!