Targeted resumes are the gold standard in today’s job market. They focus on the precise requirements stated in the job opening and demonstrate how your experience makes you an ideal fit. And while it takes more effort to craft your resume for the job you want, it is an investment worth making.
Why You Want a Targeted Resume?
When companies post job openings, they may receive hundreds, if not thousands, of resumes in response. Most hiring managers don’t have time to dig deeply into every application that comes their way. Instead, they are going to scan the material quickly to see if someone has the skills and experience they need. And, if those abilities don’t jump off the page, they are likely to move on.
Targeting your resume ensures the most applicable skills and experiences are showcased within the document. That means hiring managers can see at a glance you are potentially qualified for the position, which can keep your resume out of the discard pile.
How to Craft Your Resume
Crafting a targeted resume requires a close examination of the job posting and a thorough understanding of any listed requirements or preferred qualifications. Any specific details included in the posting, such as specific skills or abilities, must be reflected in your resume (as long as you possess them) to keep you in contention.
Your first tweaks to a current resume need to be in the summary or career highlights section. Since this is at the top of your resume and an overview regarding your potential as an employee, make sure skills and experience that relate specifically to the job posting are listed here. Begin by including details about any required qualifications; then expand into preferred qualifications if space allows.
Next, review the descriptions associated with prior employment and select the details that match with your targeted position. If certain aspects of a position are irrelevant, feel free to remove them from your resume if space is an issue. You want your strongest qualifications to stand out, so it might be necessary to cut information to keep the document streamlined.
Finally, make sure any education and training listed is both relevant and appropriate. Often, if you have a college degree in the field to which you are applying, those will always be relevant and appropriate. However, certifications may not be appropriate if they are considered antiquated or have expired.
Repeat as Necessary
Whenever you find a job posting that peaks your interest, repeat the previous steps to create a targeted resume for each one. That way you can be sure you are presenting the most relevant skills and experiences every time, increasing your chances of being selected for an interview.