Article: Writing a resume for the changing job market

Life @ Work

Writing a resume for the changing job market

The job seeker must write resumes differently for the changing job market. We discuss some important considerations that candidates must take into account while creating their resumes.
Writing a resume for the changing job market

With the constant evolution of the job market, the recruitment function has evolved and expanded to make room for innovation as well. From the job-seeker’s perspective, the goal must be to write a resume that is in sync with these changes as they will increase the chances of getting shortlisted. Mentioned below are the top tips that you can follow to stay ahead of the race:

Your resume should be ATS-compliant

One of the main changes of the recruitment industry today is the prominent use of technology in the recruitment space. Most companies today have started using intelligent ATS to streamline their recruitment process. The ATS (Applicant Tracking System) is a software that collects, sorts, scans, and ranks the resume of job applicants. This means that writing a seemingly impeccable resume is not enough in today’s world; it also needs to be ATS-compliant.  Here’s what you can do to write an ATS-compliant resume:

Pick the right resume format

When it comes to writing resumes, the resume format matters significantly. One of the most famous resume formats is the reverse-chronological resume format, and the other is the combination or hybrid resume format. Both resume formats are ATS-compliant and are ideal for professionals in all stages of their careers.

Write a one-page resume

“Keep it simple; keep it brief!” That’s the theme that you should follow when you write your resume. The ideal length of a resume is anywhere between 1-2 pages. If you have less than ten years of work experience, write a one-page resume. If your work experience transcends ten years, you should write a two-page resume. Either way, make sure that your resume does not exceed the two-page limit.

Incorporate keywords in your resume

Keywords are those critical skills that an organization looks for in the ideal candidate. You can identify these keywords by evaluating your target job posting. Once you identify them, organically incorporate these keywords into your resume. However, make sure that you should only use only those keywords that you have actual work experience in. Make sure that these keywords are uniformly scattered throughout your resume and are endorsed adequately in the key skills section. Doing this will help you write an ATS-compliant resume, and it will show that you have all the relevant skills that are needed in the new employee.

For example, let’s say you’re applying for a managerial position and the keywords listed in the job posting says “leadership,” “marketing,” “vendor management”; you can incorporate these in your resume in the manner stated below.

Your resume should be relevant

The second most important thing when it comes to writing a resume for a changing job market is relevance. There is no point in glorifying your professional expertise if your resume does not pass the basic test of relevance. If your resume is not relevant to the profile that you are targeting, it is likely to get dismissed as it does not resonate with the needs of your target job.

To make your resume as relevant as possible, customize your resume according to your target job. Most professionals make the common mistake of sending the same resume for every job. When you do this, your resume falls short because you are not writing a targeted resume for each job listing. To avoid doing this, make sure that you write your resume as per the job description of your target organization and customize each resume accordingly.

For instance, if you’re applying for a job as an editor, your resume should talk about the professional attributes that make you fit for an editor’s position. You don’t have to be a full-time editor necessarily but, you should have some degree of editing experience to qualify for an editor’s position. This shows that even though you have not worked as an editor, you have the right attributes and qualities that make you eligible for the job.

Your resume should be reader-friendly & articulate

Good readability and effectiveness is the third hallmark of a perfect resume for the changing job market. There is no point in having all the qualifications in the world if your resume is not read by the recruiter. Always remember that a recruiter spends just about six seconds on a resume, which is just enough time to skim through it before deciding if it should be further read. In other words, the first six seconds dictates the fate of your job application. Thus, your resume has to be on-point, articulate, and reader-friendly.

Writing a reader-friendly resume can revolutionize the receptiveness of a recruiter towards your resume. If it gets read, a recruiter will be able to better identify your suitability for the job. Here’s what you can do to enhance the reader-friendliness and effectiveness of your resume:

Don’t use paragraphs in your resume 

Using paragraphs to discuss your roles & responsibilities is a big no as it makes your resume unnecessarily bulky and hard to read. If your resume is hard to read, the recruiter will not spend their time and effort on decoding your resume. This means that you might have the relevant qualifications, but if the information is not displayed in your resume in a presentable manner, the recruiter will not bother to read it. The result is that chances of getting shortlisted drastically go down. Thus, you should strictly avoid using paragraphs in your resume.

Use one-liner points to talk about your roles & responsibilities 

Using bulleted one-liner points can make your resume much more easier to read. Good readability encourages a recruiter to read further and evaluate your resume. Thus, using one-liner points is a healthy alternative to using paragraphs, and you should strictly compose your resume using one-liner points.

Group similar points under unique subheadings and endorse your key achievements by using bold

You can achieve the twin objective of good-readability and high effectiveness using bucketing & bolding. Bucketing means grouping similar points under unique subheadings, whereas bolding means that you’re highlighting some words in each point to distinguish it from the rest of your resume. 

Bucketing helps the recruiter to identify your main roles & responsibilities easily. Bolding directs the recruiter’s attention to the key highlights of your career without having to look for it explicitly. This winning combination of using bucketing & bolding sees to it that your resume is not only easy to read but highly effective in communicating the key highlights of your career in one glance. 

At the end of the day, your resume must convey your work, achievements, values, and journey in the most articulate and effective manner to catch the recruiter’s eye. And with just a few simple steps, you can increase your chances of being selected for your next dream job.

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Topics: Life @ Work, #GuestArticle

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