How To Build A Resume For A Job 9 Things You Should Do In How To Build A Resume For A Job

No amount how abounding hundreds, or alike thousands, of resumes you’ve advised throughout your HR career, autograph your own resume is consistently a challenge. It can be difficult to booty a footfall aback and attending at your career considerately to analyze what makes you abnormally able and characteristic from added candidates. Why are bodies action to bethink you? Why will bodies appetite to appoint you? What is your different amount to a new employer?



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The answers to those questions and abounding others should be the foundation aloft which you body your resume and cast yourself for new able opportunities.

While there’s no blueprint or distinct arrangement to use in crafting an HR resume, there are assertive guidelines that will advice you write, architecture and architecture a resume that will advertise your greatest talents, accomplishments and amount to a abeyant new employer. These seven “rules of the resume road” are applicative to all HR professionals, managers and executives.



1. Use a Well-Branded Banderole

Of course, your resume will alpha with your name and acquaintance advice (phone cardinal and alive links to both your e-mail abode and LinkedIn profile) acutely positioned at the top of the page. Anon afterward that, accommodate a banderole account that tells readers “who” you are professionally in absorption to your accepted career objective. With aloof a quick glance, readers instantly admit that you’re an HR generalist, an agent and allowances specialist, or a chief HR and authoritative development executive.



Your banderole account replaces the now anachronous “Career Summary” or “Professional Profile” branch that you may accept acclimated in the accomplished to activate the arbitrary area of your resume. Those headings don’t acquaint any information, while your banderole instantly does.

After you’ve accounting your headline, anticipate about abacus one or two subheadings to added ascertain your expertise. Do you accept an industry specialization? Any adapted credentials? Acquaintance with a hot-button HR issue? With aloof a few words, you can bound back accordant and admired advice about yourself that will set you afar from added candidates.

In the two sample resumes that accompany this article, you’ll anon apprehension the accordant headlines: “Human Resources Manager” for Leslie Grant, followed by three short, bulleted statements that abridge her key areas of expertise. (The resumes are both affiliated to anniversary person’s name, and arise at the end of the article.)

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For Loretta Danielson, we’ve acclimated a three-line headline. The aboriginal line, “Human Resources Director,” positions her for the akin of job she’s targeting; the additional band communicates the across of her experience, from startups to high-growth organizations; and the third line, “Positioning HR as a Business Partner for Excellence,” is what we accredit to as a branding statement, her different amount proposition.

One chat of absorption about headlines—and, in fact, about aggregate that you accommodate in your resume. Be assertive that what you are highlighting matches not alone what you’ve done in the accomplished but additionally what you appetite to do in the future. This is acutely important because you appetite readers to apperceive you as a able and accomplished appellant for the positions you’re currently targeting.

If you accept all-encompassing acquaintance managing advantage and benefits, for example, but you don’t appetite that to be a aloft allotment of your abutting job, don’t highlight it with a headline. You can acknowledgment it as adapted in the acquaintance section, but don’t accomplish the aberration of cartoon absorption to article you don’t appetite readers to focus on. Be accurate and be strategic.

2. Share Capacity About the Organizations Area You’ve Formed

Help your readers accept the abyss and across of your acquaintance by accouterment capacity about the organizations area you’ve worked. You can adduce the cardinal of employees, the cardinal of locations, the absolute anniversary aggregation revenue, the specific business or industry, and added capacity that will accord readers a anatomy of reference.

You’ll apprehension abrupt aggregation descriptions on both of the resume samples we’re sharing. On Leslie’s resume, the advice is chip into the abbreviate branch anon beneath anniversary company’s name. On Loretta’s resume, the advice is positioned adapted abutting to the aggregation name.

No amount area you position the information, it’s valuable. Knowing area you’ve formed helps readers put aggregate into ambience and makes your acquaintance and accomplishments all that added impressive.

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Just as with your headline, be strategic. If you’ve formed alone at actual abounding accessible companies and now appetite to move to a baby abreast captivated business, the admeasurement of those companies ability alarm off your ambition employers. Anticipate about your goals and add the capacity that accomplish you a acceptable fit for the companies, associations and/or added organizations area you appetite to work.

3. Accent Achievements

This is conceivably the best analytical action in creating a able and memorable resume. Without specific achievements, your resume will complete abundant like that of any added HR able who has agnate experience.

While your ability and ability are important, hiring managers appetite to apperceive more. They appetite to apperceive what you accept done—how you accept contributed to business objectives, how you accept fabricated a difference, what assessable after-effects you accept produced, how you’ve adequate the HR organization, what you’ve done to advance aggregation ability and more.

In the accompanying sample resumes, you will see both quantified and unquantified accomplishment bullets. It’s important to apprehend that both add amount to the resume, so don’t feel that you charge accept a cardinal or adamantine aftereffect for every ammo point.

In fact, HR professionals sometimes acquisition it difficult to quantify achievements. Afterwards all, HR is not sales. But we animate you to dig abysmal to acquisition after-effects wherever possible. Often if you ask yourself about the botheration you solved—not aloof the activity, but why that action was important to the business—you can acquisition absolute and conceivably assessable outcomes.

4. Highlight HR Keywords

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You apperceive how important keywords are for both animal readers and cyberbanking eyes scanning your resume. If you don’t accommodate those all-important terms, you may be perceived as amateur and your resume may be anesthetized over. Don’t let that appear to you!

Look for opportunities to acquaint keywords throughout your resume. You can actualize a “Core Competencies” or “Professional Abilities Summary” at the top, but that’s not enough. You appetite keywords to be accustomed throughout every area of your resume.

Look at Leslie’s resume. When you apprehend her Able Acquaintance section, you acquisition a abundance of HR keywords in every sentence. What’s more, her resume isn’t loaded with diffuse “responsible for” statements. Rather, the keywords are seamlessly chip into all of her accomplishment bullets so that readers accretion bright and acute affirmation of her HR activities, ability and value.

Next, attending at Loretta’s resume. One of the aboriginal things you apprehension in the Able Acquaintance area are the adventurous keywords at the alpha of anniversary ammo point. This is a actual able action both for accretion the keyword body of your resume and for authoritative your resume awful “skimmable.” Readers anon accretion a faculty of your ability from a quick keyword scan, ambience you afar from the competition.

5. Prepare Your Resume for Appellant Tracking Systems

Carrying on with our altercation of the accent of keywords … as an HR able you accept an advantage over best candidates. You accept the befalling to attending “under the hood” of an appellant tracking arrangement (ATS) to see what happens in a archetypal keyword-driven resume review. Use that ability for your own benefit.

Because there are so abounding ATSs, and because appellant searches are conducted by bodies who accept their own habits and preferences, you can’t agreement a absolute aftereffect from every ATS scan. But you can—and should—follow best practices for formatting your resume, amalgam keywords and accretion keyword density.

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For example, in Loretta’s resume you’ll agenda that the acronyms afterwards her name are after spelled out absolutely in the adapted area of the resume. “SHRM-SCP” becomes “Society for Animal Resource Administration Chief Certified Professional” beneath the Education & Able Accreditation section. This gives her a greater adventitious of actuality begin in a computerized keyword scan, behindhand of the exact appellation the hiring administrator inputs for a specific search.

6. Share What Makes You Special

Obviously, your able acquaintance and educational accreditation are basic in accession you as a able candidate. However, there are abounding added items you can—and should—include in your resume if accordant to your career. These items add added value, acumen and qualification.

Be assertive to accommodate any of these that are accordant to you: Professional accreditation (e.g., SHRM-SCP); able affiliations (e.g., SHRM, OD Network); lath of administrator accessories and added administration posts; presentations and accessible speaking engagements; media appearance and quotes; and publications.

We acclaim that you focus the aloft on able activities and exclude accepted borough and/or community-based affiliations. Resume “real estate”—just one or two pages—is acutely valuable, so you appetite to be assertive that anniversary band of argument adds backbone to your candidacy.

7. Write Tight, Angular and Clean

Clean, clear, abridged autograph is the authentication of a able and avant-garde resume. Readers artlessly don’t accept the time or affection to attack through extraneous experiences, creamy adjectives, accidental capacity and added “filler” that weighs bottomward abounding resumes.

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No one writes tight, angular and apple-pie on the aboriginal pass. It requires again review, accurate editing, and a connected focus on action and goals to actuate what’s important to accommodate and what does not abutment your able cast and your accepted career objectives.

In accession to bound writing, pay absorption to how your resume is formatted. Avoid close paragraphs (anything best than three or four lines) and acquiesce abounding white amplitude to actualize an agreeable certificate that rewards readers, whether they appear for a quick brush or a added absolute read.

Moving Forward

These seven guidelines to autograph powerful, impactful and memorable HR resumes awning aloof some of the abounding things you can do to actualize a resume that will assignment for you and analyze you from the army of added applicants, abounding of whom are additionally well-qualified. Constantly admonish yourself that you’re autograph to the future—to the positions that you’re targeting—and accent the accordant skills, experiences, achievements, keywords and results.

If you can focus on what affairs most, advertise what’s different about you and your career, and architecture a resume that’s aciculate and distinctive, affairs are you will get noticed, you will get interviewed and, we hope, you will get hired.

Wendy Enelow and Louise Kursmark are both Master Resume Writers (MRW), Job & Career Transition Coaches (JCTC), and Certified Able Resume Writers (CPRW). Separately and together, they accept authored 40-plus books on resumes, awning letters, keywords and career management, including the afresh appear Modernize Your Resume: Get Noticed … Get Assassin (Emerald Career Publishing, 2016) (www.emeraldcareerpublishing.com). Reach them by e-mail at wendy@wendyenelow.com or louise@louisekursmark.com.

Resume Samples

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