When it comes to applying for jobs, it does not matter what the position is or how many times you have gone through the hiring process, writing the perfect resume to stand out can be challenging, stressful, and overwhelming. It is never easy condensing and isolating all of the information relevant and significant enough to include on your resume.
This daunting task is not easy at any level, but if you are ready to prime your resume for an executive-level position, there are content and stylistic pointers that can help you polish and refine it. Let’s look at 8 powerful changes you can make to your executive-level resume.
Include Analytics and Statistics
When it comes to your resume, the more numbers you can use the better. Numbers make a significant impact on resumes. This is why quantitative information is more encouraged than qualitative information on resumes. Quantitative information supports and presents measurable success, whether that is meeting goals, supporting business projects, or executing tasks.
Numbers are specific and can attest to what you have accomplished and the impact you have made in past places of employment. Wherever you can include numbers on your resume, do so, but be mindful not to fudge numbers, as numbers do not lie, and a company can ask for proof at any point.
Customize for the Position
When your resume is written, that is not the end of it. While you can send out a drafted resume at any point, you are more likely to hear back and secure interviews when you customize your resume for the position you are applying for.
In customizing your resume for the position you are applying to or are interested in being promoted to, be sure to highlight areas of experience that are relevant and discard what is not. If it is not necessary, leave it off your resume.
The most striking point of customization is the resume summary. This is also referred to as a professional statement or personal branding statement. Located at the top of the resume, this section is of particular importance because it characterizes your resume, connects you to the position of interest, and is the first point of presentation to the hiring team.
Build Off the Template
If you are using a template, it is best to build off the template used and not leave your resume as is. Templates are a guide and direction for your resume. Sticking to the template limits your indirect introduction to the hiring team and potential employer.
Templates are great for getting started, but should not be your finishing point. You want to stand out. That is not to say to turn your black-and-white resume into neon green and pink. Simply changing the format, selecting a different font, and leading the readers’ eyes can go a long way in utilizing customization to emphasize your skills.
There are a variety of ways to format your resume. At the executive level, there are options of chronological, functional, and hybrid. Chronological formats emphasize career progression, while functional formats showcase achievements and expertise. Hybrid formats are a combination of both. Depending on the desired role, any of the three can be of avail.
When it comes to cliches and things that show up to much on resumes far too often, one of the most immediate redundancies to look out for is overused words. With millions of resumes, there are no ways to avoid using some of the same words.
However, when you are applying for a position with hundreds of other applicants, yours might catch the hiring team’s eye by using “supported” over “assisted” or “illustrated” over “made.”
Target the ATS
A major point of contention for job seekers is the ATS, applicant tracking system. This system cuts down review time for hiring teams by scanning resumes. If certain keywords are not used, you can be automatically thrown out. Not taking consideration for the ATS can essentially end your job search before it begins.
Before you finalize your resume, research common keywords for the job position and description to improve your chances of passing the ATS. While it may not make sense in some cases, using the exact keyword is critical for getting your resume in front of a real person.
Put What is Important and Leave Room for Sharing
While you do not want to have a mundane resume, you also do not want it to be too exciting. Include essential information to make it past the ATS and interesting job experiences to capture your hiring team’s eye. Not too much or too little.
The information included on your resume is a balancing act. You can’t include everything. You want to put what is important to garner attention, but leave room for sharing so you can still capture interest during the hiring process. Tailor your experiences to suit the employer’s needs.
Update Contact Information
A small but vital part of the resume is the contact information. There is debate over what information should be included in this brief section, but in general, you should have your name, email, and URL of some sort.
The email should be one identified with a professional or contemporary platform. The URL should be linked to a professional networking site like LinkedIn. Additional URLs should be relevant to the position if requiring a personal or portfolio site.
Resumes are an integral part of the hiring process. They require time, effort, and serious consideration to prepare for application. There are numerous tips, tools, and resources, like executive resume writers, available to help you fine-tune your resume to get it into the proper shape to send out.
A final important tip is to get an extra set of eyes on your resume to see how it reads. Having someone else read your resume can help identify things you would have otherwise not noticed. Get started on your resume by harnessing these powerful changes that can make the difference between hire and passing.