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VERNON, Texas — In a highly competitive job market that will only become more so, why would you be content to send out a less than your best effort resume?

resume adviceOur firm is flooded with resumes asking for comments or suggestions.  Some of the resumes are produced by professional resume writers.  Some are great.  Others are produced by candidates or career consultants who have not kept up with the times.  They are … well, not so good.

Almost every resume I see, and I have the luxury of hindsight, can be strengthened.

Recruiters and potential employers are looking for people who can add immediate value to their enterprise.  When discussing your accomplishments, be sure to speak in the language of this is what I accomplished versus this is my experience.  That is a very important difference today.

Here are the five most common observations we make:

  1. Always include your address.  If you are a manager or supervisor, that may not matter, but as an executive, if you do not provide your complete contact information, that raises a flag.  Why?  In a world where researches give a resume 15 to 20 seconds on a “first pass” or where large systems use scanners to log in resumes, why would you want to be an outlier?
  2. A “placeholder” summary is nice but know that every time you send a resume, the summary should be  tailored to clearly show that you meet the needs outlined in the job posting.
  3. Always describe your employer, including the name of the city where it is located.  You would be surprised at how many resumes do not include this important information.  Moreover, if the employer is a recognized innovator, or top performing organization, it is OK to tout them in the description.  It only enhances your standing.
  4. List your title and describe your scope of responsibility.  Do not include scope of responsibility  statements in the dot points. Save those for relevant quantifiable accomplishments.  If you use percentages, quantify them with base line information.
  5. Your academic credentials are important, but…
    You should not list your master’s degree after your name since almost everyone in senior leadership has one these days.  We recommend using only the following academic credentials your name:  PhD or an equivalent, JD, MD, DO, RN, or an equivalent.You should always use professional credentials if they are current:  FACHE, FHFMA , CMPE, CPA, RN, or the relevant certifications.  If you have multiple certifications, DO NOT list them all, place the rest under your Academic Credentials at the end of your resume.