6 Secrets to Keeping Your Resume Fresh

resume tips updated resume

If a great job opportunity came your way tomorrow, would your resume be ready to go? Here are the resume tips you need to shake off the dust and create an updated resume that will impress.

Even if you’re not actively in the job hunt, it’s a wise move to have that perfect resume on hand. You never know when you might face an unexpected job loss or hear of an opening that is too good to pass up.

The good news is that if you learned how to write a resume in the past, you won’t need to start from scratch. Here are six resume tips that can help you keep it fresh:

1. Wow them with results

Your resume should emphasize what you’ve done, and not just job titles and dates. Most resumes include too much general description or buzzwords and not enough specifics, so make yours stand out with details about your contributions. Employers want admins who have a proven track record of successfully completing projects and who deliver tangible results. Whenever possible, include metrics and numbers, such as how much money or time you saved your company as a result of a change you instituted.

2. Include recent accomplishments

Once you’ve created the perfect resume, the best way to keep it up-to-date is to revisit it after each accomplishment. Were you recently promoted to executive assistant? Have you earned a certification? Were you recognized by your company for your work? Make it a habit to add these achievements soon after they happen. Be sure to mention when you achieved them so that potential hiring managers will know you’re professionally active, engaged and driven.

3. Make it scanner-ready

As much as we’d like to think that a human takes the first pass at our job application materials, the reality is that these documents often go through resume-scanning software initially. Make sure your updated resume has a simple format free of graphics or other images so it’s processed easily. And while it’s important to include keywords from a job post, don’t just fill your resume with them in order to game the system. Today’s sophisticated software looks at how words are used in the document, not just the frequency with which they're used.

Some products also check resumes against social media, so make sure that what you turn in resembles what you’ve shared on sites like LinkedIn. While you should customize your resume for each opening, it shouldn’t be so dramatically different from your other resumes that you don’t appear to be the same person.

4. Avoid dated practices

There’s no need to include a career objective anymore, as seen in the picture above. Employers are more concerned about what you bring to the table, so consider adding a section with technology expertise, for example, to highlight specific skills. Also, there’s no point in saying “references available upon request,” because hiring managers assume you’ll provide references when asked. Do make sure your updated resume includes your LinkedIn address, as well as links to any personal work-related blogs or websites.

5. Update the overall look

Sometimes you may need to give your resume a face-lift. Take the length, for example. While a one-page resume may have been sufficient earlier in your career, you may need to expand it to two pages now. Consider a new font. Something like Georgia or Garamond is a safe bet today and can improve the overall appearance.

6. Don’t forget to proof

All of the resume tips above won’t make a difference if you turn in a less-than-perfect document. Even minor spelling or grammatical errors might lead a hiring manager to incorrectly assume that you’re careless about your work in general. Taking the time to carefully proofread and submit a clean, flawless resume increases your chances of being considered for a position.

How often do you update your resume?

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