Just as the candidate deals with a high-pressure job search, an employer or recruitment consultant comes under pressure to find the right candidate from a virtual pile of applications – often within impossible deadlines!
When a hiring team is going to give just a glance at your resume, they are not going to be thinking for you. Instead, it’s up to you to think for employers and make it easy for them to pick your profile. Here’s how you can give the employer a helping hand:
• Talk to (All) Your Audiences
Notice the plural? The fact is that you WILL be talking to 2 or even 3 audiences with your resume.
First, your resume will be sourced ‘or shortlisted’ by a not-too-senior employee in the recruitment firm or at the employer’s end.
Then, a handful of resumes will find their way to a senior member of the HR team, the person you will have a reporting relationship with, or perhaps, even an interview panel.
Your resume needs to talk to all these audiences. Stay away from technical jargon and make it simple enough to sail past the first level. What you don’t want to do is pitch it so high that it never gets to the senior team that you were addressing.
• Tell Them What They Need to Know
You’ve always believed that the hiring team will find out the facts that they need about you. However, they believe they should not need to look for information at all.
Chances are that the recruiter is stretched for time. Or that an employer received a few hundred applications to be screened at break-neck speed. Figure out what is most important for them to know. Now let your message stand out. Keep your resume short so key information is not buried in pages of text. Go for a clean, simple format; something that does not create noise. Make sure information needed to voice your resume is highly visible and up to date.
• Say the Same Thing – Differently
You want to create the impression that you have a scorching record for business development. Or that you can work a financial turnaround. Or that you are a technology whiz.
Say it strongly in your resume – supporting the point with numbers and specifics, not just stating it. Then, put the same message on different touch-points. As Dan Schwabel, the author of Me 2.0., says, “Your first impression isn’t made with a firm handshake – it’s with a Google search.” The net is your greatest opportunity to build the right impression and get people to remember you. Let your resume be one of many touch-points of your profile, including your LinkedIn Profile. Wherever your name comes up on the net, let it consistently send out one message and build your brand.
If you can help the employer to understand and act on your resume, you’ve made life easier for that over-worked HR team. Hopefully, that’ll help you boost your career!