As a mid-level event manager at one of the top social media companies in the world, Heather (not her real name) says it’s her job to flawlessly execute meetings so the company’s clients feel important and appreciated.
Though she loves her job and where she works, she’s targeting a promotion within her organisation so she can move up the corporate ladder and take on more responsibility.
As part of Business Insider’s new résumé makeover series, we thought we could help.
“While she had the relevant experience in event management, her previous résumé was selling her short,” says Joe S., a senior résumé writer with TopResume, who we asked to rewrite Heather’s résumé. “Too much fluff, not enough punch,” he says.
By scouring Heather’s real résumé and referencing the TopResume worksheet he had her fill out, Joe S. was able to overhaul her résumé.
While your résumé may look different, these pointers from Joe and Amanda Augustine, career-advice expert for TopResume, should help you do the same:
To help make Heather's résumé pop, Joe drilled down into the details to uncover just how many responsibilities she was handling in every event that she managed.
He then translated these duties into the appropriate buzzwords, which he sprinkled throughout the revised résumé, including a new objective statement and areas of expertise section.
In the experience section, Joe differentiated Heather's tasks versus her achievements, which he says 'helps recruiters seamlessly skim a document for key information, while also providing enough detail for a more thorough review later in the hiring process.'
It's always a good idea to remove your street address, Augustine says, because there's really no need for it.
'While we encourage candidates to include their city and state to demonstrate that they're local candidates, there's no reason to provide additional details on your résumé,' she explains. 'They take up precious space on your résumé and can be considered a security threat -- think about all the places you post your résumé online.'
'While not all social media channels are appropriate to include on every candidate's résumé, Heather works for a major social media platform and is pursuing a new role within her current organisation,' Augustine notes. 'It makes sense to demonstrate her social media savvy on her résumé by including links to accounts on which she is active.
Joe asked Heather to customise the URL to her LinkedIn profile -- 'it's an easy way to look more polished as a candidate' Augustine says.
He also confirmed that her social media accounts are current, regularly maintained, and don't include updates that would be considered unprofessional or inappropriate by an employer, a good idea for any professional.
'Before you throw up your arms and protest, 'Aren't objectives always discouraged?!', read on,' Augustine says.
'Yes, including an objective statement is considered a no-no on a modern résumé. However, we do suggest adding a professional title and summary that explain the role you're pursuing and your qualifications,' she says.
Augustine explains that Joe added the word 'objective' in front of the summary to offer context, since Heather hasn't previously held an 'Event Marketing Manager' position.
'This also made Heather feel more comfortable about using this job title at the top of her résumé,' Amanda says. 'The title we chose was the same one for which she's currently applying within her organisation.'
'While Heather held numerous jobs in the past, some of them were simply not relevant to her current job goals,' Augustine says.
To save space, Joe simply included a brief career note under her professional experience section about her work in massage therapy.
Saving space allowed Joe to highlight the skills Heather developed and responsibilities she held that are valuable and relevant to an event-marketing position within the areas of expertise section.
Joe also drafted a short blurb describing each of Heather's roles in greater detail than previously, keeping her current job goals in mind, and then used bullets to draw the hiring manager's eyes to her most relevant contributions and qualifications, Augustine says.
'Think of your résumé the same way a marketer would look at an article on their blog,' Augustine suggests.
'If you want people to discover it when they're searching online, it needs to contain the right keywords to ensure it gets to the top of the search results. The same idea applies to your résumé in an applicant tracking software (ATS) system,' she says.
Augustine suggests incorporating keywords that you find in the job description (assuming you possess these skills) throughout the résumé.
'This approach helps your résumé bypass these electronic gatekeepers, straight to the top of the hiring manager's pile,' she says.
'At this point, no one cares about Heather's GPA or her college-newspaper job,' Augustine says.
'When you first graduate, these details may be important to a hiring manager. However, once you have some experience under your belt, your education section gets simplified and moved to the bottom of the résumé,' she explains.
'Heather is only five years post-graduation. On top of that, only her most recent job is closely related to her current job goals,' Augustine says.
'When you're new to the workforce and you don't have a lot of experience that's related to your job goals, it's best to streamline your résumé to a single page,' she suggests.
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