With business owners and recruiters receiving an influx of hundreds upon hundreds of job applications for all manner of low level to highly-skilled positions, it is now more important than ever before to pour your energies and efforts into crafting a resume which stands tall above the rest, seizing the reader’s attention from the get-go.
It’s an employer’s market out there. With so many resumes to look over, most hiring managers will move on rapidly if their interest isn’t captured quick-smart so you better make sure your resume sparks interest and grabs the employer’s eye.
But what is the best approach to garnering this attention?
A resume should be regarded as your own personal marketing tool. Keeping this in mind will help you stick to what’s relevant and aid you in finding the appropriate tone of voice. As you are marketing yourself to a prospective employer you must communicate your ‘value proposition’ within your resume first up. You do this by starting with an executive summary.
The executive summary is pretty much a sales pitch in which you sell yourself to the business:
It is tailored to the business you’re applying to.
It covers everything you think the employer would like to know about.
It also details your ‘point of difference’, or what makes you stand out from the rest of the candidates.
Career-hoppers: Because it identifies your transferable skills. Without it, a hiring manager may just glance at your last few jobs, or experience and dismiss your suitability, stopping short of discovering your transferable skills further down.
Seasoned professionals with a diverse work history: Because all your most impressive skills and achievements are the first things a recruiter will see. Not to mention it’s a great way to sum up a long and diverse career.
University Graduates: At this stage of your life you probably have a fairly general work history, so in an executive summary you can list the experience & skills which are most relevant to the job.
1. Position it below your contact details at the top of your resume.
2. Use a title that showcases your professional identity.
3. Just 4 to 5 lines of text in the body of the summary will do. You can use bullet points if appropriate.
4. Avoid using first-person, it’s not professional.