Article 2 in our Common Questions About Resume Writing Series of articles
Client Happiness Manager
Careers by Design
8 MIN Read
Your resume is a key part of landing the coveted dream job you’ve had your eye on. It is your first impression to a hiring manager, the document that can get your foot in the door for an interview. Having a good resume will help you showcase your skills and experience in the best light possible and can help you distinguish yourself from the competition.
A professionally written resume, which can be obtained easily by partnering with a professional resume writing service, can help you maximize your chances of landing a job that may result in a higher salary, better benefits, improved work-life balance, or with more opportunities for growth. This can lead to an improved quality of life for you and your family. It’s important to speak to a professional who is up to date with hiring practices and with how to brand yourself, so you have the best chance possible.
Read on for 5 key components of a professional resume.
1. Incorporate a professional profile or executive summary.
An executive summary or professional profile is a statement that goes at the top of your resume that summarizes how you are the best fit for the job and what sets you apart. You can think of it as your elevator pitch. It’s important to tailor this to your audience depending on the type of role you will be applying for. Your executive summary can emphasize skills and strengths that distinguish you from other candidates, highlight how you can contribute to the organization, or showcase how you are an excellent candidate for the position. The nice thing about an executive summary is you get to control the narrative. This is the first thing the hiring manager will see and a few sentences is all you need, so make every word count!
2. Choose power words to make your resumé stand out.
Power words are words that you can incorporate into your resume that stand out to potential employers when they are scanning your resume. There are four types of power words: keywords, action words, description words, and number terms. Keywords may mention elements of the job description, may reference industry skills or educational credentials, or may show use of a particular type of tool. Keywords are often present within the job description or the organization’s website. Action words are verbs that you can incorporate into your descriptions of responsibilities you have held within your employment history. These words may highlight areas of competencies, and some examples are: collaborated, achieved, launched, developed, and analyzed. Description words are adjectives that illustrate your strengths and competencies. Pick words that accurately describe you, while also highlighting valuable qualities to the organization. For example, you can use words like loyal, reliable, confident, thoughtful, and motivated. Number terms are ways to quantify your work experience and how you have benefitted your organization. You may include things like the number of accounts you’ve secured, the percentage you grew the team, or the dollar value you added in sales.
3. Use keywords to demonstrate competencies.
Use keywords in your resume to showcase your competencies and your experience. Your resume should be written in a clear and concise manner – every word you use counts, so don’t fill it with fluff. It is best to show your competencies throughout your resume, rather than assume the reader knows what you know about your strengths and skills. It is best to tailor your resume towards each job you apply for, using the job posting description as a guide. The more specific and targeted you can make your resume, the greater your chances of being noticed by the hiring manager. Key words might also be picked up by Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS), which scan for words that are important to the potential employer.
4. Use a modern, polished look to grab attention.
The way your resume looks can have a huge impact on whether it gets noticed by a hiring manager. The aesthetic of your resume is the first thing the hiring manager will see. Your resume should look clean and polished. You can choose a modern font like Arial, Verdana, or Calibri, and keep the font to size 12. Your name can be larger than the rest of your text. Avoid making your resume overly flashy by keeping images to a minimum and sticking to a template. Use consistent formatting in your resume, whether it is bulleting your points or bolding job titles.
5. Highlight achievements and accomplishments.
Many candidates applying for jobs will simply list a description of their duties at previous jobs. Highlighting your professional accomplishments and achievements is a good way to help you stand out from the crowd. Listing your accomplishments will help you illustrate your professional growth and strengths to the hiring manager. Examples of accomplishments may be exceeding sales goals, attaining relevant certifications, or awards received. Your accomplishments can be scattered throughout your resume, such as in your professional summary or your employment experience. You may wish to speak to a colleague or mentor to get unbiased feedback on what your professional accomplishments are.
Our team of professional resume & branding specialists have decades of experience working with clients just like you to put their best foot forward. Our writers can work with you to highlight your professional accomplishments and stand out from other applicants, helping you to get noticed by the hiring manager for your dream job.
Learn more about our resume & branding packages, book a free information call, or purchase your resume package by visiting us online at: https://www.careersbydesign.ca/services/resume-writing-service-toronto/
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