Making Your Resume About Your Future Employer
It’s true—your resume is about your accomplishments, your job history, and your skills. It is also important that you realize the potential employer is reading it from this perspective: “What can you do for our company?” As you put together this document—remember that the resume is supposed to entice an employer with enough information that makes the company interested in contacting you for an interview.
How exactly can you cultivate this type of attitude and verbiage in your resume? Read below for several tips designed to focus your information on your future employer.
Eliminate the objective and use a career summary. In the past, an objective discussed how you wanted to further your skills and build your career in the coming years. Frankly, the employer may or may not care about this. Instead, use a career summary that discusses skills—these can align with key words in the job posting that allow you to get through Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) employers may be using.
By using this valuable space for skills and accomplishments, you are already showing the employer what you may be able to do for the company.
Do NOT use first-person in your resume. This means avoiding the use of “I,” “we,” and “us” as you put the resume together. You may have to think about your accomplishment statements in this way at-first; however, be sure to modify everything to reflect third-person verbiage.
By utilizing this type of language, you allow the future employer to see you doing these types of things for them.
It also shows better team-orientation and collaboration skills to NOT use “I” in a resume. Start each sentence with a powerful verb. Use a thesaurus if you feel like you are repeating yourself over and over again.
For example, if you feel like you are using the word “manage” or “lead” more than their fair share, you can use other words such as: execute, spearhead, generate, cultivate, create, and deliver.
Emphasize the team. Use words like “collaborate,” “cross-functional teams,” “relationships,” and “partnerships” to showcase your teamwork abilities. No matter the type of position you are seeking, chances are that you will not be working alone.
Showing that you are a team player and can work well with others is a valuable skill that can be used in any job opportunity. If you feel like you had a vital position within a team, you can say something like, “Played a key role in a team that accomplished XYZ.”
Remember to focus on accomplishments. So often, people regurgitate a job description on a resume. There are a LOT of people that have similar job descriptions.
I can guarantee that there is only one of you and you have accomplished different things than other candidates. Use these accomplishments to set yourself apart from the rest of the crowd.
Once again, listing these accomplishments allows the company to see the things you have done, the effect you have had on previous employers, and how you may be able to do something similar for their organization.
Showcase the above-and-beyond. If you are in a professional organization, hold an important certification, or have leadership roles in community affiliations, list them on your resume. All of these items show that you are willing to go above-and-beyond the workplace and that you are furthering your goals. What will you do for their company? The potential employer could also think that you are a leader, driving force in your industry, and someone that enjoys furthering himself or herself.
The bottom line is this: focus on what you can do and accomplish for the employer. If you make it about them—you really are showcasing your strengths and attributes. This will allow you to position yourself for success in the workplace.
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