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Think of Your Resume as a Brochure

Make sure your resume lines up with your career goals and objectives

Resume Writing TipsYour resume is the best way to show potential employers exactly who you are and what you are capable of as an employee. Rather than letting it be just a boring list of accomplishments and qualifications, try thinking about it as an advertising brochure, a method of selling yourself to prospective employers.

There have been so many times where I’ve spoken to potential candidates for jobs who know where they want to go in their career, but they put too much emphasis on positions in their resumes that either don’t apply to the position they’re applying for, or skills from a different industry that are not relevant to their potential new job. You shouldn’t feel like you need to take these positions off your resume. Instead, take those skills and experiences that do apply to your potential new job and make sure that you highlight them.

For example: let’s say you’re fresh out of college looking for your first job in the “real world,”, but the only experiences you have are old student jobs that are unrelated the field in which you are applying. While you should keep your work experience on the resume, what you should really highlight is the relevant skills you learned at those student jobs that will translate to your new position. You can still find relevant skills to highlight, even if the jobs themselves aren’t relevant to your application.

 

If you know what your goals and objectives are for your career, it’s easier to pick out these relevant skills to highlight. I recommend sitting down, taking some time to reflect about where you’re going in your career, and then taking the time to analyze your resume to better figure out how your resume can line up for the position you’re interested in.

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Candidate Tips: Resume Length

Question: How long should a resume be – one, two or three pages?  

Jim’s View:

Don’t worry about it.  I’ve never had a hiring manager or a human resource manager call me saying “Why did you send me this candidate? This person has a two (or three) page resume!

The short answer is that it depends on the length of your experience.  It needs to be long enough that the hiring manager can see the necessary skills they are seeking for the position.  The biggest mistake a person can make is to cut their resume short to keep it to one page (or possibly two pages) and in the process omit important information that the hiring manager is looking for on the resume.  

The resume has one purpose… to get you an interview.  If the hiring manager doesn’t see the skills he/she is looking for, you’ll never get the interview. 

The consumer products industry is analytically-based and many of the positions are detail-oriented.  Therefore, some of that detail needs to be on the resume… they’re hoping they see enough detail to make their decision easy, motivating them to say “I need to talk with this candidate.”