You know you should update your résumé regularly, but if you are like most busy executives, it is easy to get sidetracked. Next thing you know, your résumé revision is at the bottom of your to-do list. So what happens if you get a call unexpectedly from a recruiter who wants to see your résumé right away?
If your résumé hasn’t been dusted off in a while, here are a three quick fixes to quickly give it that Pledge shine:
Beef Up Your Professional Brand
By using a strong headline and branding statement that is matched to the potential job opportunity, you will enhance your desirability. Directly below your contact information you can boast about your key strengths in a bold way that says “I am THE one!”
Add verbiage to your summary that includes your most marketable attributes. Also, if you don’t already have a core competency section, create one. List all of your strengths in an easy to read format. These can go either directly above or below your summary. Alternately they can appear in a side box.
Your newly rebranded résumé should look something like the sample résumé below:
Create a Unique Style
While some of you may opt for an ultra conservative style, using a format that is less than traditional has its advantages. By modifying the visual appeal of your résumé, you can make content jump off the page. When your résumé looks extra special, it will command greater attention from recruiters and hiring managers. Take a look at the sample résumé below. It is still fairly conservative with clean lines, but now has an impressive, image enhancing look that gives it a unique flair. With the use of lines and special characters, a regular résumé can become a work of art.
Add a Career Highlights Section
To include more recent achievements from your current role that are not listed on your previous résumé, you can add a Career Highlights section. When creating specific highlights, use the SAR method. S for situation, A for action, and R for result. What project did you work on, how did you resolve any problems that arose, and what was the positive outcome that resulted?
By bringing important accomplishments to the forefront, you can entice hiring managers to request the all important interview. The sample below will give you an idea of the types of achievements that should be listed in a career highlights section.
Performing some minor modifications can have a considerable impact on the overall impression your résumé makes. If you do not have time for a full rewrite, you can enhance your brand and the aesthetic appeal of your résumé to draw increased attention to your recent career highlights, establishing your competitive advantage.
Likely you are not the only person who will be sending a résumé for the job opportunity. If recruiters and hiring managers view the uniqueness of your background, they will be more inclined to want to meet with you for a personal interview.