By Taunee Besson, CMF, CareerCast.com Senior Columnist
Potential employers want to know specifically what you can do for them, so if you craft your resume for each opening, the screener is more likely to note the difference and give you the opportunity to talk in person. Here are some time-tested guidelines for writing a tailored resume:
Example: "Credit analyst for Alpha Corp." Then make sure the rest of your resume speaks to this position.
Phrases like "Results oriented," "Hands-on" and "People person" have become clichés, so don't use them.
Remember, you're hitting the high points here, not telling a life story.
On the other hand, accomplishments that outline your unique contribution put real sizzle into your resume. Use action verbs such as collaborated, designed, planned, developed, initiated, sold, mentored, etc.
Mentioning that you increased territory sales by 50% in one year or managed and decreased expenses by 20% through operational efficiencies tends to capture the reader's attention.
If you've worked with highly respected clients, give their names. If your responsibility covered an eight-state area, mention it.
When you're listing your current or previous job title, company and dates of employment, think about which would be most impressive to the reader and put that first or in bold type or italics. (Dates rarely deserve this honor.)
Information grouped in more than 3-4 line clumps looks onerous, especially if the recruiter is reading through dozens of resumes.
Savvy employers will appreciate your efforts to keep current with state-of-the-art developments.
You never know when the reader is an avid snowboarder or hiker too.
Senior Columnist Taunee Besson, CMF, is president of Career Dimensions, Inc., a consulting firm founded in 1979 that works with individual and corporate clients in career transition, job search, executive coaching, talent management and small business issues. She is an award-winning columnist for CareerJournal.com and a best-selling author of the Wall Street Journal's books on resumes and cover letters. Her articles on a variety of career issues have appeared on numerous career/job websites and trade and business journals. Ms. Besson has been quoted numerous times in The Wall Street Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Business Week, Time, Smart Money, and a number of other websites and publications.