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by Vault Careers | October 14, 2011


In today's uncertain economy, job seekers need to make sure they are equipped with all the right tools to attract a hiring manager's attention.

With more businesses using electronic computer programs to sort resumes, its especially important that a candidate's resume contain key words and relevant information in order for them to stand out in a crowded field of qualified applicants.

1. Adapt and adopt

One good way to ensure a resume will deserve more than a passing glance is for job seekers to customize each resume to fit the exact job description, according to Fox Business News. Resume expert Mary Alice Franklin told the news agency that a candidate must tweak his or her resume to reflect their interest in the job opening, and highlight why they would be a good fit.

"You want an employer to understand that you want this job, not just any job. Pull keywords from the actual job description that relate to you. These characteristics are clearly important to the employer," Franklin added.  When using keywords, be careful not to use cliched terms in your resume. 

2. Stand out

Candidates may want to think of additional ways to apply to a job other than a traditional resume. David Lewis, chief executive officer of Operations Incorporated, said that often times unconventional methods can show hiring managers just how much a candidate is interested in a job.

"If you are going to send in a resume, be sure you stand out in some fashion," Lewis noted."I'm not talking about pink paper or giant type. I had someone send a ball in advance of sending their resume to all hiring managers with a note: 'Who can carry the ball for X company?'"

3. Known when to get personal

Career coach Scott Dobroski said that job candidates should avoid using the "I" pronoun in a resume because it is too personal. He suggested that job seekers only use the first person in a cover letter.

Job seekers should also be aware of any email addresses that appear too personal or unprofessional. Candidates might want to consider getting a separate email to use only for the job hunt.

4. Avoid mobile devices

Smart phones are great for apps, but they are not that great for serious emails.  Job seekers should never send their resumes and other application materials via mobile devices. The chance of typos and other mistakes often increase when using advanced technology. Human resources manager Thomas DeLay said if a potential employee notices a candidate has applied through a mobile device, it may appear less than professional.

--Published courtesy of Brafton


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