Four reasons why your resume is important when applying for a job

It’s common practice to submit your resume when applying for a job. Find out four reasons why your resume is so important.

Your resume is the first chance a recruiter or future employer has to get to know you. To build a first impression as to what you might be like and what you can do, and the basis on which they decide if they want to get to know you better, and consider you for the role they’re filling.

So if you want to land a job interview – or even the actual job – you need to make sure your resume really sells you. That is paints a realistic but positive picture of who you are, what you’ve done, and why you’re a perfect fit for the role you’re applying for.

To help you hone the perfect resume, here are four reasons why it’s such an important document – to you and to recruiters.

1) It outlines your relevant experience and skills 

If you want to secure a job then you’ll need to demonstrate that you have the right experience and skills the role requires. And your resume is your chance to show that you do.

When choosing what to add to your resume, search for examples of career objective points to include. Then consider what your experience and skill are and (very importantly) what skills and experience the role you are applying for requires.

It’s important that you tweak your resume for every job you apply for to ensure that you highlight the attributes, skills and experiences that particular role asks for.

That’s not to say you should simply reflect back what the job descriptions lists – you do actually need to possess these skills and have had real experience! But you can pick out those relevant from your background to highlight. And what you choose to highlight might chance with each job application.

Of course you can simply speak to a recruiter and describe your experience and skills, and hope they note the right ones down. But recruiters might speak to dozens of candidates every day, and won’t necessarily remember or note down everything you say. It’s much safer to retain control and send over a resume that lists everything you want them to know about you in relation to a particular role or roles.

2) It showcases the benefits you can offer to future employers

When applying for a role, competition is often tough, and you may be one of many excellent candidates hoping to get the job. So you need to ensure you stand out as an excellent prospect – and your resume is just the vehicle for this.

So when preparing your resume, consider what the role you are applying for requires – and in particular how the employer will measure the success of the role – and ensure that you demonstrate the relevant and specific benefits you offer.

What do we mean by that? Let’s say you’re applying for a sales role. You might be tempted to simply state that you are a “high performer” or that you “love sales”. But that’s too vague. If you want to excite a recruiter or potential employer you need to give them specific details.

So, for example, if you achieved $300,000 of new media sales within six months, or doubled the customer base of your previous employer within two years, then state this on your resume. A good recruiter will spot this, and it will excite an employer who is hoping for similar results in their business.   

It’ll be much easier for your future employer to see how you can benefit their company if you indicate quantifiable achievements in your resume. And this information will also help recruiters understand your value as an applicant – and ensure that you’re the candidate they put forward and recommend.

3) It helps you land an interview 

Usually, a company will advertise a vacant position, accept documents from applicants, and then decide from these documents who they will schedule for interviews.

Most companies follow this recruitment process as it allows them to filter applicants and assess which ones are most likely to suit the vacant position. And recruiters who have been working in the industry for many years can quickly ascertain what they need to know about an applicant’s personality simply by scanning the submitted application letter and resume. 

So if you want to make a positive impression on recruiters in the few seconds they devote to scanning your resume, and ensure that you’ll be scheduled for an interview, it’s important that you get your resume right.

That means including only the information about your professional experience and skills that is relevant to the role you are applying for. You also need to make sure you use keywords from the job description (this will help with with recruiters and the ATS computer system that sometimes scans and discards resumes before a human even sees them).

And finally, make sure your resume is easy to read and cleanly designed.

4) It enables you to brand yourself

When you apply for a role today you’re often competing with many other candidates. And it doesn’t matter how much experience you have, there will always be someone who’s worked longer or achieved more than you. This is particularly the case if you’re applying for a role in a different industry.

So how can you give yourself the edge over candidates who may appear to be more suited to the role than you? The answer lies in your resume.

A good resume can help you brand yourself, allowing you to stand out from the competition, and make a brilliant first impression. Your professional experience can make or break a recruiter’s decision to hire you, but, in most cases, this isn’t the only thing that they look for in your resume.

More often than not, recruiters are also looking for very specific skills, and if you properly highlight these in your resume, you can easily create a brand that will help you to differentiate yourself from other applicants.  

So read the job description carefully, and glean any details you can about the role, and ensure that your resume doesn’t just list the basics of the role – it’s virtually written for it.

It’s easy to write a good resume when you know how   

Contrary to popular belief, creating a good resume is not an impossible task.

You simply need to understand best practice for creating a resume, tweak it for every role you apply for, ensure you write it specifically for the skills and experience the role is looking for, and make it simple and easy to read.