Applying for a job is one of the most stressful endeavors, especially in this ever-increasing competitive job market. So how does one make a resume stand out in the crowd of hundreds of candidates applying for the same job? Keep in mind the warp speed at which an employment agency reads a resume. This is truly the chance to shine on a document and take a moment to light your way!
Now is a good time to take advantage and work with an employment agency because of the 50-year low unemployment rate and shortage of unemployed candidates. An employment agency searches for a well-crafted resume from the most qualified applicant to place at their client. Recruiters are always open to continually engaging with available employees who are hoping to find a new opportunity.
How one presents herself on a well-crafted resume will determine the perception of a recruiter at an employment agency. Remember to highlight technical, customer service, and computer skills as well as work history and important accomplishments. A recruiter instantly determines whether or not a candidate is qualified for the job. Use each job description posting as a guide and craft the resume for each position by choosing certain keywords to instantly grab the attention of the recruiter. Only apply for a job if the entire description has been reviewed. Imagine the embarrassment when a recruiter calls saying, “Tell me where and when you used this specific skill.” Suddenly you’re on-the-spot to disclose, “I’m not really familiar with that software”.
With regards to formatting text, choose a basic, simple, and clean font. Arial and Calibri convert easily from device to device. Fancy fonts are distracting and messy when transferred. Keep the information in an easy-to-follow order:
Contact Information – Write your name and use an email address, even if you need to create a new one, which will present yourself as a business professional. There is no need to include a home address, especially if applying for out-of-area jobs. If you really want to stand out, include the specific position you’re applying for. Leave off a photograph; save it for your social media sites.
Summary or Career Objective – Highlight what you will be offering to this company by matching the position you’re applying for, not what you’re looking to do. You might miss an opportunity by mistakenly appearing to be seeking a completely different position. Carefully read and review the job posting from the employment agency for relevant experience and skills required.
Skills – List hard key skills first such as technical, computer software competencies. If a completed up-to-date certification is required for the job, get the original stamped document from the institution. Even if it isn’t absolutely required – if you list it, present it. Also, list soft skills such as communication, teamwork, time management, and self-development.
Education – Honesty is the best policy! If you have graduated with a college degree, it’s usually understood that have a high school degree. List the degree obtained, field of study, the school, and achievements obtained during your education, if they make sense for your career.
If your college degree is incomplete, list the courses taken. If you are currently attending classes, write “currently enrolled” and “intended completion date”. There have been cases where candidates listed the year which they wanted, but did not graduate. The recruiter from the employment agency requested a completed transcript directly from that college. When the response is “Sorry, she/he did not graduate,” it can be a disaster. The hiring process fizzles with the client, as it appeared to be falsification of degree.
Employment History – List in chronological order each previous employer and include the month/year started and month/year ended, as well as each company’s City/State location. Avoid the common mistake of using a confusing Job Title that is so specific to a previous employer, but not relevant to the industry. Intertwine your exceptional communication skills into your past positions, highlighting how you successfully created opportunities to grow with continual learning and joining members of your team for growth opportunities and reaching goals together.
If you were a top performer and were recognized with an award, highlight those meaningful responsibilities and achievements to an employment agency. Showcase how you were treasured and kept on as a great talent! If you were internally promoted or moved into other roles within the organization, demonstrate your flexibility and valuable qualities, especially the wish for continual career development.
Share your tactics of how you improved group performance, helped your employer meet goals, and built a positive work environment for the team.
References – There is no need to list references on the resume. A recruiter will request them if and when the interview process progresses. Word to the Wise – never fake them. A recruiter in an employment agency will call each one for their assessment of your work track record.
Also remember to have someone else review the resume for spelling errors, incorrect punctuation, and grammatical flow, before sending it to an employment agency.
Start a new journey on your never-ending career path. You never know where life will take you!