As technology continues to evolve, the manner in which we apply for jobs also continues to evolve. This means that 2017 will bring changes in the way we create our job applications. With that in mind, below are some of the most important resume trends to remember when you're creating or updating your CV in the coming year.
1. Make the Most of Your Prime Resume Real Estate.
Although most resume experts agree that creating an "Objective" statment near the top of your resume is no longer necessary, there is some disagreement on the inclusion of the "Summary" statement. However, most agree that the more senior of a professional you are, the more important the "Summary" becomes. That said, the top third of your resume is certainly prime resume real estate, and so perhaps most important when you update your resume is to make sure you create a strong "Summary" (if you are indeed creating one) in order to capture hiring managers' eyes right away. You want to use this space wisely to include what position you're targeting as well as a few pointed achievements that support why a hiring manager should call you for an interview for that specific position. Very important: Don't use the space to state the obvious with fluffy attribute descriptions.
2. Make More White Space.
White space, white space, white space. Cramming content in multiple, information-dense, multi-lined paragraphs with little white space around each one is enough to make a recruiter scream, "Next!" These days, recruiters see more resumes than ever, so make it easy for them to find information, using bullets and sectioned-off information blocks in order to smoothly move the eye through the document. An added tip: Once you write your resume, challenge yourself to identify as many as words as you can to delete from it. That is, write concisely. Doing so will help you create even more white space and make the reader's eye flow over your resume with even more ease.
3. Lead with Your Achievements.
Put your best foot forward, leading with your accomplishments early in your Summary and employment sections. In today's employment marketplace, with shrinking attention spans, you must lead with a strong first impression. Your summary should contain your crowning, most relevant achievements. This will keep the reader engaged and motivate them to keep reading. In addition, in your employment sections, make sure to put your most interesting, eye-catching, impressive achievements at each job first. It's possible, given that recruiters often spend less than 30 seconds looking at each resume, that your first achievement in each section will be the only ones they read.
4. Detail Your Impact.
Each year it's becoming more important to include on your resume exactly what you have accomplished. To that end, numbers and percentages are very compelling. And using the right types of numbers is extremely important. For example, do not lead with years of experience if you want to be hired on merit. It's much more interesting to employers if you write, "Reduced operating expenses by 23% in six months" than if you write, "30 years of sales experience." The latter elicits a yawn, but the former piques recruiters' interest and leaves them wanting to see where else you've made a tangible impact.
5. Align with Your Online Profiles.
A resume doesn't exist in a vacuum anymore; it's not the only way someone can find you, nor should it be. Ensuring your resume is in alignment with your personal website, LinkedIn profile, Twitter account, blog, and other social media pages pertinent to your field is paramount. Hiring managers might find your work on your personal blog, but when they reach out to ask for your credentials and you send them your resume, you want to make sure your online presence is in alignment with your offline/resume presence. Consistency is key.
A version of this post previously appeared on ChameleonResumes.com.
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