New resume ideas to enhance your job application process!
Your resume is a prospective employer’s first source of information about you and first impressions are usually of most importance. Based on that single page, they decide to give you that first interview—or not. In this economy, having an interesting, clear resume is more important than ever. But getting noticed can be difficult, even overwhelming. Let’s face it: We could probably all use a little free resume help.
Some of us probably still think of resumes as simple lists of past employment and duties performed. This format, however, can be boring, and prevent an employer from really appreciating your skills. Instead of this worn-out chronological format, switch to one that highlights your capabilities, not your history. When writing a resume, accentuate your transferable skills,and use a functional skills resume format. Both will help you make a lasting impression. Let’s look at some free help for resumes.
How to Perfect Your Resume
You’re not like everyone else, are you? Of course not. Your resume needs to reflect this same individuality. It needs to project an image of who you are, where you’ve been, and what you can offer a company.
1. Focus on Transferable Skills
On a resume, always focus on your transferable skills. These are skills that, well, transfer from one job (or industry) to another. Above all, you want to tell your future employer that you have developed skills they want and need. Look carefully at the description of the job you’re applying for. Do they want someone who can work well in an office? Someone who is a great communicator? Think about your work experience and see if you can find other situations where you’ve used those same skills, or variations on them.
2. Look at the Big Picture
Always look at your work experience in a “big picture” view. If you worked as a waitress, you weren’t just someone who took orders and brought food. Chances are, you had to work with other servers, and you probably had to talk to some pretty nasty customers, at times. What are the transferable skills from this job? Teamwork and communication are skills that all employers are looking for, and they need to be part of your resume. These transferable skills will set you apart from other applicants.
. Choose an Appropriate Resume Format
When it comes time to actually sit down and write that resume, focus on these skills, not your job history for its own sake. Use a functional skills resume format, especially if you are changing career fields. This is a resume format that explains your abilities and competencies in categories, such as Writing, Customer Service, or Management. Under each heading, you can explain your experience and skills, making sure to focus on those that are transferable, not job-specific. Chronology still has a place, though—make sure your resume includes a list of your past positions, or else your future employer may wonder just where you got all those great skills.
Some websites want to charge oodles of money for information about how to perfect your resume so you can score that perfect job. Don’t believe the hype. Free resume help is just as effective, since, no matter what, all you need are a few suggestions and a new way of thinking about your qualifications. Happy job-hunting!