Whether you have been job hunting for 1 week or 1 year, it’s clear that the process is not fun. I have yet to meet somebody who wakes up in the morning and says “I sure can’t wait to apply for jobs today!” All jokes aside, this is a serious matter. Finding a good job takes a lot of time and effort.
Don’t make the process harder for yourself by continuing to use a low-quality resume. But wait, how do you know if the problem is your resume? It could be so many other things!
In this article, we are going to break down the 5 major signs it’s time for a professional resume makeover. Check these Top 5 Resume Sections You Can't Go Without.
1. You have been using the same resume format for years
If you belong to that rare group of individuals who have kept the same job for over 5 years then it's probably time for a resume makeover. Believe it or not, a lot can change in 5 years. Just like you have grown in your career, the resume is forever changing. As an old wave of hiring managers reach retirement, a new generation is taking over. Some say this is a “lazy” generation, and other say an “efficient” generation. Whatever your opinion is, doesn’t change the facts.
The facts are that resumes will go out of style faster than your cell phone. If you are not staying up to date with the latest resume trends, it will be a lot harder to find a job. It’s not even so much that your resume style or formatting is out of date, it’s more about the content.
Companies are constantly changing the names and responsibilities of positions. It would behoove you to adjust the wording in your resume by comparing it with the open jobs you are interested in. See these Professional Resume Style - Headers, Fonts, & Themes.
2. You have resume longer than 3 pages
Whoa, a 3-page resume. Really? Any resume over 2 pages is a little excessive. I don’t care how senior you are. Yea, yea, it must just be my “lazy” millennial mindset. But I sure don’t want to read a 5-page resume. And I am one of the few people I know that enjoy reading! You might as well stop reading this article, and start working on your resume makeover. Whether you do it yourself or use a professional cv writing service makes no difference. Just get it done.
It’s important to remember that your resume isn’t designed to appeal to you, it’s for the employer. Stop thinking about what you want to see, and put yourself in the shoes of the employer. If I see a 3+ page resume I am crumpling it into a ball, and reading 3 1-page resumes in the same amount of time. I call that being “efficient”. Again, whether you agree with this or not, it doesn’t matter. I am just trying to give you some perspective on what recruiters/hiring managers are doing.
I am not saying this is the right way to do things, but when you receive 250 applicants for the same position, there must be some sort of elimination process. See what you can eliminate after reading How To Write A Professional Resume.
3. You are receiving rejection emails within days of applying
In my opinion, this is the worst! You spend all this time applying for a job only to receive an automated rejection email within days. Sometimes hours.What nerve these companies have! Did they even read your resume? Do you really want to know the answer? The answer is, “probably not”.
“So you are telling me I spent an hour filling out their application and they didn’t even look over it?” Sadly, yes. Most of the time when you are receiving a response within days or hours it is sent from an ATS (Applicant Tracking System). This software scans your application, determines whether you are a good fit, and spits back out a yes, or in your case, a NO. Why are you receiving a no? And what can you do to fix it? Great questions!
This is where CV writing services come in handy. Staying up to date with the latest resume trends, keywords, buzzwords, and applicant tracking systems is a full-time job in itself. It is extremely important to optimize your resume in every way possible towards the specific job and industry you are applying for. A resume makeover is attainable on your own, but is this something you want to try to do yourself? After all, it is your future job and well-being. Read more about How To Use Resume Keywords When Applying For Jobs.
4. You are changing industries or positions
If you are changing industries or trying to move into a completely different position, you might be in for a rough ride. With companies becoming more and more particular about the people they hire (due to high competition), it’s hard to find a job unless you are the “perfect fit”.
The best thing you can do in this situation is to think of any and all ways that your previous experience could relate to the new. Don’t expect that your salary should stay the same either. Often, companies are looking for relevant industry experience. This is why they pay what they do. If you are stepping into something new, it would be silly to expect the same pay.
As amazing as your old resume might be, there is no doubt that you will need a resume makeover before applying to completely new positions. Again, you can definitely do this yourself, but if you don’t want to, there are about 1,000 professional resume makeover services out there who would be more than happy to help. Finding a professional who has resume writing experience in the specific industry you are looking to get into could be a huge help.
5. You have applied to hundreds of jobs with little to no response
If you have applied to hundreds of jobs with little to no response, don’t be discouraged. This is a great sign! Here’s what we know. They have not given you a fair chance to know if you are a good fit for the position. In other words, it’s not you who isn’t getting the job. It’s your resume! This is a lot better than having no idea why you aren’t getting hired and feeling discouraged. If they have never even spoken with you, it’s clear that your resume is in serious need of a makeover.
The resume is half the battle. Once you start getting phone calls, you might need to brush up on your interviewing skills. But don’t get ahead of yourself! Worry about the interviewing once you start getting calls. You can be the best interviewer in the world but if you don’t get any interviews, what good will that do you?
Throughout this article, we have sprinkled various resume makeover articles to help you move in the right direction. If you plan to tackle the resume on your own, these articles will be a great start. However, if you would rather have a professional do the work, I recommend checking out the top 10 resume writing companies for executives in 2018.