Technology advances in online job applications and resumes have helped employers streamline hiring processes. However, once job seekers hit “Submit Application,” they might be left feeling unsure if their resume made a lasting impression.
As hiring managers sift through digital piles of resumes, they reach a point where all resumes look the same. How can a job seeker compete? Taking a few extra steps to add some flair to your resume will help you stand out.
Here are five ways to get your online resume noticed.
1. Show your work
They say a picture is worth a thousand words, and those words also ring true when it comes to employment. If a potential employer can “see” samples of your work, you are guaranteed to get more than the average seven seconds most resumes normally receive. For those in creative fields, add a link to showcase your work in an online portfolio. If you are a developer, include a link to a code repository, such as Github or Bitbucket, to show sample code. Direct employers to other opportunities that highlight your skills and abilities relevant to the position, whether it was a podcast guest appearance, blog post contribution, YouTube videos, or articles you have written. There is a world of difference between saying you accomplished something and showing a tangible example of your work for hiring managers to see.
2. Add keywords wisely
When recruiters and hiring managers scan your resume, they look for keywords that pertain to the position’s requirements. If it requires experience in a particular software or technology, make sure they are included, but also be mindful of the chronological order in which you list it. For example, if you list multiple versions of a specific software, do not start with Windows NT, 95 or XP if you currently use Windows 2016. Start with the most recent version and work backward. Additionally, do not include technology versions that are no longer used in the industry unless it is key. Finally, do not mention programs that you are familiar with, but are not capable of confidently using on day one of the new job.
3. Showcase newly acquired skills
One trait that is desired almost universally among employers is a job seeker who has a growth mindset. If you have a gap in your resume, for instance during the pandemic, be sure to note any independent studies, classes, or webinars completed or participated in during the time off. Being able to show that you took a free online coding class or attended a virtual webinar or user group is impressive.
4. Link your LinkedIn profile
LinkedIn is one of the most popular resources recruiters and employers use to find professional candidates. It shows a 360-degree view of a person including experience, interests, recommendations, and accomplishments. Hyperlink your LinkedIn profile at the top of your resume to nearly guaranteed the employer will take more than the average seven seconds to look at your resume. Make sure your LinkedIn profile is updated and that dates and information are in sync with your resume.
5. Create a video resume
LinkedIn allows users to post videos, and now more candidates are adding a video resume to their profile. A video resume does not have to be Hollywood quality. Use it simply to introduce yourself, explain what you are looking for in your job search, and provide a comprehensive explanation of your background. Video resumes should never be more than a couple of minutes. The primary goal is to make you stand out from other candidates and secure an interview.
If you’re applying for a remote job, here’s a bonus.
Highlight prior remote experience. Make sure to note any prior remote employment experience. This may be as simple as adding the word “remote” in parentheses after the company name. Showing your ability to work successfully in a remote environment will automatically give you an upper hand against candidates who have never done so.
A resume is the gateway for an employer to learn more about you. However, your resume should be more than a roundup of past employment history. This is the opportunity to showcase who you are professionally. Organizing your applicable skills will break up the monotony of other candidates’ resumes and better catch your dream employer’s eye.
Diane Tabulog is a technology recruiter for Vaco’s Memphis team.
Connect with Diane or reach out to another one of our seasoned recruiters here!