Hard to believe that this crazy year is finally coming to a close. This has been a tough year for millions of Americans economically and medically. Many people are searching for employment and will continue to do so into the new year. In our previous blog we discussed the importance of actively doing things to increase connections in the field you desire, such as attending virtual networking events. Today we are taking a deeper look at how you can beef up your résumé in order to start the year on a positive and hopeful note. 

Writing a résumé that gets you noticed has never been more important with millions of people job hunting currently. Here are a few tips to optimize your résumé and help it stand out from the others in the pack. 

employment application

Integrate Critical Keywords

Human resource departments and hiring managers usually read hundreds of résumés before  bringing in candidates for interviews. Part of the process of sifting through the piles of résumés is to look for keywords listed on the résumé which tell management that you may have critical experience or knowledge to fill the job for which they have openings. Some human resource departments do this by hand while others use computer programs to search for these words on the documents. Here is a great article from NextAvenue about the Top 24 Keywords to work into your cover letter and résumé. 

Write Looking to the Future 

Many job seekers mistakenly see their résumé as a historical document. Instead of looking back at the list of experiences and skills that you learned, display those items in a way that tells a story of how certain skills and work experiences will help you in your future position. Many skills are crossovers from one profession to another so explain how you have been building and fine tuning those skills to help you in a future position. The tone this sets is a positive one. 

Highlight Your “Wow” Experiences & Skills

Instead of listing your experiences chronologically or by past position, put the most “wow-worthy” experiences right at the top. Catch the attention of the hiring manager right away rather than have the more important items buried in the document. In addition, you should also expand on these accomplishments or skills and explain how they will support future job experiences. Don’t be afraid to toot your own horn a bit. 

Improve Readability 

LifeHack online suggests, “Improve the readability of your resume by using the language that is comprehensive and understandable to those who make hiring decisions in these fields.” To do this: use one font and size that is clear and easy to read, avoid repetition, stay away from jargon or industry abbreviations, and eliminate content that reads like a job description. 

Do you need help beefing up your résumé for the new year? Contact the North Shore Career Center and MassHire North Shore or take a look at the resources they list online.