It’s vital to customize your resume to the job you’re applying for. Since everyone either has a computer or has access to one these days, you have no excuse not to. Use the job ad as a guide for keywords to include in your resume either under your objective statement, list of qualifications or in your actual work experience if applicable. Many large companies have software that scans your resume looking for specific keywords. No matter how qualified you may think you are for the job, if those words aren’t in there, your resume may get put in the ‘no’ pile.
Try a different approach with an online resume. You can post your traditional resume to all the job hunting sites like everyone else. Or, if you’re personable and comfortable on camera, create a video resume and upload it to YouTube. Just keep it short, to the point and describe what sets you apart from the rest. You can also upload your video resume to your personal Web page. And if you don’t have one, it might be something else to consider creating.
Although it may be tempting to get creative on your resume and embellish the facts or give yourself that promotion you thought you always deserved – don’t do it! It will catch up to you. Employers have all sorts of tools at their fingertips to research you and your background, so please keep it honest.
In these days of emailing and uploading resumes, the cover letter is becoming a lost art form. Don’t let this happen to you. Make sure to write a cover letter for every job you apply for. And, like your resume, customize it each time. A cookie cutter cover letter is sure to end up in the trash, along with your chances to land the job.
If at all possible, have someone else proofread your resumes and cover letters. Want to lose out on a job opportunity super fast? Then have typos or grammatical errors in your resume. It’s true what they say, that you only have one chance to make a first impression. And your cover letter and resume are just that, so make sure the impression is a good one.