If you want the chance to actually wear those new interview clothes hanging in your closet, you’ll need a resume that stands out from stream of submissions a hiring manager typically receives. Creating a comprehensive resume that not only highlights your education, accomplishments, skills and experience, but is also tailored to the job you want to land, takes a little time. However, the payoff for creating the perfect resume might just be a paycheck in your bank account.
Print out a copy of the job posting to which you’re applying. Highlight key qualifications from the ad to use in your resume. Job postings often have long lists of requirements and responsibilities – but you can’t address them all. You want to keep your resume between one and two pages, so just choose the words that clearly match your experience and achievements.
Open your resume with a strong introduction tailored to match the company's ideal candidate -- after all, that's you. You can use a single headline or a short paragraph. Refer to the qualifications you highlighted in the job posting -- and incorporate those qualifications into your introduction. For example, you might state, "My five years experience in marketing, industry and customer insight, data mining and intuitive management will drive my success as marketing director."
List your degrees and previous positions as headings on your resume. Place these in a font that’s slightly larger and bolder than the rest of your resume to grab the reader’s attention and direct her eye while reading. If it’s early in your career, you’ll probably want to title your first section, “Education” -- where you’ll indicate your degrees. You can include a bulleted list under each degree indicating school-related skills or achievements. You might title your second section, “Professional Experience” -- where you’ll list previous jobs in chronological order beginning with your last position. Include a bulleted list of your job duties and responsibilities under each job heading.
Edit your bullet points to include the wording or phrasing used repeatedly in the job posting. You can't get away with simply copying and pasting the required experience on the job posting -- but talking the same language as the person who wrote the job posting will ensure your experience isn't lost in translation.
Include additional sections such as “Awards,” “Publications, “or “Professional Licenses” if applicable. Your resume tells your story -- and you want to highlight how applicable your story is to a particular position.
Chris Daniels covers advances in nutrition and fitness online. Daniels has numerous certifications and degrees covering human health, nutritional requirements and sports performance. An avid cyclist, weightlifter and swimmer, Daniels has experienced the journey of fitness in the role of both an athlete and coach.