Ok, first of all, let me explain one thing. There is NO such thing as the perfect resume. I am going to repeat that statement only because I feel I have to. “There is no such thing as the perfect resume”. That being said, you must be very disappointed. In fact some of you are probably saying, well then why bother. Why be worrying, sweating, thinking, pouring my soul out, going through a gut wrenching and emotionally charged time with writing a resume when there is no such thing as a perfect resume? It’s simple. You do not need a perfect resume to have your resume placed on the offer an interview pile rather than the trash and shred it pile.
One of the most frequently asked questions I receive is, “How do I build a perfect resume, one that is guaranteed to get me a job?” Here is my answer to this dilemma. Every employer out there has a slightly different idea of how they want to see a resume laid out and what kind of information should be on it. Over the years I have been continuously interviewing employers, recruiters and resume writers so I can keep up to date with the times and see what employers expect in a resume from a potential candidate for the positions they are offering and how resume writers think a potential candidate’s resume should be written. The bottom line is, there is no one right answer. There are many different ways to write a resume that are all just as good as the next. There may not be a perfect resume but you can get close, very close.
Here’s the real deal.There are certain components of a resume that are absolutely necessary to include. The first and one of the most important components of your resume, which we will explore here is, “Targeted Key Words.” Without these, your chances of having your resume actually read are slim to none. In this case, it doesn’t matter what skills or experience you have, your resume could quite possibly end up in the trash.
I am going to assume that you are now asking yourself, what are targeted key words and where and how do I use them?There are two trains of thought over the portion of a resume called the Career Objective. Some resume writers and consultants feel it is necessary and some say not. In my opinion and experience, adding a career objective section at the beginning of a resume is very important. This is where you can place targeted key words that will help to get you through to the next level, the interview. If these keywords are not found in a quick scan of your resume than your resume goes directly to jail and does not pass go. In other words, no interview for you!
Scanning for keywords is not used by 100% of employers, however, a very high percentage of them do use this technique. Think about it for a second. They will sometimes receive 100’s and possibly thousands of resumes for various positions being offered. It would take way to much time for each and every resume to be read through. In some cases, companies even use software which scans resumes for keywords. If these targeted key words are not found, well, in computer terms…delete, delete, delete.So, let’s take a moment here to talk about Key words specifically. Key words can be found quiet easily. In fact, when you look at a job post, they are filled with keywords that pertain to the position, what is expected of you to fill this position and what the company is looking for in a potential candidate. Never repeat word for word what a job post lists as skills required for the position however, pick out certain words that can be used throughout your resume and particularly at the beginning in the Career Objective section.
Another place to look for targeted keywords is on the company’s website. Do your due diligence and research the company you are applying to. Find out who they are, what exactly they do, what their business model is, who works for them and if you can, even what their employees are saying about the company they work for. This will arm you with the right targeted keywords to impress whoever is looking at your resume or even to pass a software scan and help you get closer to that all important interview. So there you have it. You do not need to build the Perfect Resume, simply a resume with Targeted Key Words that piques the interest of the potential employer and gets your resume through to round two.