Resume Writing – Streamline the process
Resume writing has evolved much over the last decade. Some might even say, it’s a bit of an art form. Before you even get a face to face, the company you are applying to is forming an opinion on you based on the application and resume you’ve sent in. This is your first opportunity to show the company that you are the best fit for a position. Any career development guru will tell you to tailor your resume to fit the job you are applying for, but if you’re applying for several different types of positions within a field, this could take a lot of time and effort. If you’ve ever put off applying for jobs or staying at a job you hated, just because the thought of having to dig up all you past employee records was even less appealing, you are in good company. Creating an Excel Spreadsheet is a simple solution to getting your employee records in good order. Here’s how you do it:
- The Fixed Information
The columns should read left to right: Dates, Employer, Supervisor, Title, Desc1, Desc 2, Desc 3, and Reference. When filling in the information, be sure to list it with the most recent on top. You can always insert a row above as your experience grows. In the dates column, list the dates with as much detail as you have.
The employer section should contain the name of the company, the full address, and the phone number. The Supervisor should include the full name, title, e-mail address, and phone number if possible. Next, would be your official title with the company. Always be accurate when resume writing, it will surely come back at you if you don’t!
- The Variable Information
The “desc” columns are in relation to the type of jobs you are applying for. Instead of using “desc1” title, replace it with the type of job the description pertains to. For instance, say you are a senior graphic designer and are in the market for a job.
Resume dogma dictates, that long resumes listing everything you did for the company is the fastest way to get passed over. Companies just want to know what you did in the role as it pertains to the position you are applying for. This is where it is vital to tailor your resume for the job you want. The trouble is, it takes a lot of work to keep creating and recreating different versions of a resume. It’s also a good way to make a careless mistake. Using the description columns will help you to keep all the information in one spot. This method is much easier, because it allows you to simply copy and paste repeatedly after you’ve taken the time to carefully craft the verbiage once.
Using our example of a senior graphic designer, you may have created art, slogans, managed a group of peers, set design budgets, met with clients, etc. Not all of this is relevant if you are now applying for a management position that wouldn’t really meet with clients. There are times you need to alter your resume to not seem overqualified, and other times you need to highlight a skillset. By taking your duties or accomplishments and organizing them into categories such as “management”, “sales”, “Analysis”, etc, you can quickly copy and paste information to make a tailored resume in minutes.
Finally, you have a column for references. Again, different types of resumes require different types of references. It’s good to have references, both internal and external for each place you have worked. You don’t need to include all of them in an application, but pick and choose the ones that are most relevant. This also gives you a place to update their contact information.
It may take a little leg work to put this spreadsheet together when resume writing, but once it’s done, you can use it to surf the web for interesting positions and submit a polished resume in minutes. After all, timing is everything in job market.