Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Resume Renovations

As you've probably surmised by now, I look at a lot of resumes. While many resumes adequately explain a job seeker's job responsibilities, few elaborate on the accomplishments within those responsibilities. And let's face it. Many people perform similar jobs with similar competencies. What makes each person unique is the success he or she brought to those positions, not the day to day tasks that hundreds of others may be trained to do. Consider these typical resume statements from job seekers who probably have a great deal to offer employers, but are not getting that message across in their documents.

Answered questions that pertained to each customer's needs.

Undoubtedly customer service is critical for many positions. But this statement tells the reader little other than that a function of the job was answering questions. Hiring managers want to know what was the volume of the inquiries, how long did it take to resolve customer issues and how did that timeframe compare to the company's standards. Are there any powerful examples of how an irate client was satisfied, and were any processes put in place to address redundant questions so time could be freed up to work on more complex issues?

Develop and execute promotional opportunities.

Great! Tell me more! What types of campaigns and what were the results? Did the promotions drive revenues, capture a new niche, or take market share away from a competitor? What was going on in the company before these promotions were developed and what is happening now as a result of them?

Prepared weekly reporting on equipment performance.

Why were the reports prepared and who received them? Was the report used by senior management for forecasting or decisions on vendor contracts? Was any money or time saved as a result of these reports and if so, how much?

Develop business plans and strategies to build rapport and solicit new business accounts.

Sounds important. What were the results? Was new business secured, and if so, what was the percent increase in accounts from last year until now and what were the revenues associated with that new business? Were creative strategies or guerrilla marketing techniques leveraged to obtain the business?

Break away from the day to day of your work experience and strive to showcase the unique, memorable, creative, and "above and beyond" moments. You will quickly rise to the top of the resume pile and secure more interviews faster.

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