What is your resume worth?

Q. How much is your resume worth to you?
A. Potentially thousands of dollars, payable annually!

And there’s more good news….

A new job could lead to a further $10,000 a year for the next 5 years or a terrific new career..…or both. Something to think about if you need a bit of motivation to pay your resume the attention it deserves.

And the dollars are only part of the answer. Your resume can also open the door to a satisfying and fulfilling career. It’s your passport to an interview and that’s the first hurdle you need to get over.

A well written resume is one of the best investments you’ll ever make.

The Basics

Your resume is not your position description. If it reads like a position description it’s time to completely rethink your approach. This is really fundamental yet many people still treat their resume as if it’s a position description, particularly in their early careers.

Everything dates….even your resume. Check it still looks and reads like a contemporary document and the key to this is to read it from beginning to end.

Update or overhaul? If it reads well from your early career then it’s likely you just need to update it. If you haven’t rewritten your early career for years then it’s likely a complete overhaul is needed. You’ll soon know when you read through it as you’ll spot changes in style and language as you’ve updated it on an ad-hoc basis.

Check the balance of space is working to the best advantage. Your next employer is more likely to be interested in what you have done recently so make sure you have given that the most space.

Achievements with quantifiable data are important. Are you showcasing your main achievements in each role and quantifying them? Clients and recruiters love to see proof of achievements and data can provide that. It can make a big difference to your chances of being shortlisted. And don’t just do it for your current job, look back at your earlier career and see where you can inject some data there too. That will demonstrate a solid track record of achievement.

Cut out the guesswork. Be specific instead. General statements such as ‘was involved in a major change management project’ won’t give the person shortlisting for interview good information to base a selection decision on.

Visual appearance. Look at your resume, is it inviting you to read it or is it so crammed with information you find yourself zooming in just to read a date? A resume with good content that is also visually appealing is a recruiter’s dream document.

Wear the recruiter’s shoes…….read your revised resume thoroughly as if you are the recruiter. Get a sense of what reads well and what doesn’t.

And if you need motivation to do more work on it then remember those thousands of dollars or the amazing career this influential little document can lead you to.

Remember, it’s not just a resume, it’s an investment in your future.