Who is Reading Your Resume?

The first rule in writing is to know your audience—this rule applies to resume writing as well. Too often, we compose a resume to highlight what our major responsibilities at our past experiences with little or no thought given to what the future employer is looking for in an applicant. Also, many times young professionals will have work experiences on their resumes that are not related to the job to which they are applying; what is one to do? The answer—tailoring.

Tailoring a resume means one should highlight experiences and skills that are desired by the future employer. In other words, write the resume with a specific employer and/or job function in mind. Tailoring a resume takes time and effort, especially when describing past jobs so a future employer will find value in them.

Being a math tutor may have nothing to do with a sales position, but the ability to interact with others, communicate information, and relationship building are skills one develops as a tutor and would be very helpful in a sales position. It is important to describe past experiences so that one highlights skills that are desired by the future employer.

Read through several job postings for the same job function (ex: entry level audit associate) – find the skills and experiences that appear on most, if not all, of the postings. These key words and phrases need to appear on your resume. Review your resume and ask yourself when you have demonstrated these skills listed on the job postings? Then, rewrite the resume bullet points to highlight the desired skills.


About Kevin Monahan

I have 10+ years experience in coaching clients in their career management and career change efforts. Personal career consulting services combined with employer outreach to help find opportunities for both constituents.
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