The Right Keywords Can Get Your Resume Noticed Among the Harshest Competition
It’s often been said that saying the right words at the right time is the key to success in the business world. If you have a line in your presentation that really captures attention…or if you say something particularly clever in a job interview…you may be able to achieve a career high you never dreamed possible.
It’s also no secret that a resume needs to be worded quite carefully if it is to accomplish the job applicant’s hoped-for results. While you’re drafting the wording for your career highlights, job duties, and other essential information for your resume, you should give some serious attention to keywords.
How the High-Tech Revolution Changed Resume Reading
There was a time when employers took a stack of resumes that had been handed to them by their secretaries and proceeded to read through them, carefully laying aside those resumes that featured applicants that appeared to be suitable to the companies’ needs. Of course, this was a painstaking, time-intensive process, and a manager who was bored or tired might inadvertently misclassify a resume in the process of getting through the stack.
However, with the advent of sophisticated technology, the resume-reading process has changed dramatically. A number of human resource executives note that such changes were inevitable, given the large volume of resumes that are routinely delivered to a manager’s inbox. If hundreds of resumes are submitted for a given job, a corporate headhunter must find some way to scale that paper mountain in order to find the right candidate. As a result, an increasing number of employers are digitizing the resumes that pour into their offices. The documents can then be placed into keyword-searchable databases in order to isolate those resumes that contain “the magic words.”
One resume-writing expert now estimates that more than 80 percent of all resumes are searched for job-related keywords. Given the fact that both Fortune 500 companies and smaller firms are now routinely engaging in keyword searches, it only makes sense to make your resume as keyword-attractive as possible.
You will need to craft your resume so that it contains the keywords that a manager is searching for with regard to a particular position. While job titles often serve as keywords, you cannot change the titles you’ve held, so you should consider focusing instead on job skills. If you’re applying for an IT job, for instance, you’ll want to list specific technological skills in your resume. You’ll also want to be sure to include the names of software and hardware that you’ve worked with (This is probably true, even if you are not applying for a job that does not require a BA in computer science).
If you are searching for a position as a business executive, the term “Fortune 500” can be an incredibly helpful keyword to have in your resume. Some large firms recruit exclusively from other large corporations. Therefore, if you do not include “Fortune 500” in the text of your resume, you could be missing out on an incredible opportunity.
Key Things to Consider About Keyword Placement
It’s highly important to recognize the fact that including critical keywords in your resume copy is not enough to secure an interview for the job you desire. You’ll also need to place keywords appropriately within the text. At one time, resume-writing experts recommended placing a simple list of keywords at the beginning of your resume—but that conventional thinking doesn’t seem to hold true anymore. While you should try to place keywords near the beginning of your resume rather than at the tail end, it’s best if you incorporate keywords throughout the body of your document.
By crafting your resume in this way, you will achieve two important goals: 1.) keyword-searching software will pick up all relevant keywords within your text and 2.) you’ll be able to attract and hold the attention of a company manager who might be bored by a long list of keywords headlining your resume.
Also, don’t forget about the often-overlooked synonym. While you can make an educated guess about the types of keywords an employer is looking for, you’re not a mind reader. Therefore, in addition to a generous use of one of your keyword favorites, be sure to include synonyms for the word as well. By following this advice, it’s more likely that your resume will have the keywords the employer is actually searching for.
How Many Keywords Are Enough?
Once you begin the process of selecting keywords, it’s imperative that you make sure that you include a sufficient number of keywords in your resume. One Internet resume expert recommends aiming for 25 to 35 keywords, and also suggests that you include as many variations as possible. In this way, you can work to make your resume as keyword-rich as possible—without making it a dull read.
Once you’ve devised a keyword-intensive resume, think of the document as being subject to change. After all, in your conversations with your colleagues, you may discover that new keywords have come to the fore in your field. It’s also a wise idea to refresh your resume for each position you’re applying to…since different companies—and different jobs—may require a different list of keywords. A highly customized resume is often a successful resume.
Should You Avoid Certain Keywords?
While you may think that you’ve developed a comprehensive list of resume keywords, you might be wondering if there are certain keywords that should never see the light of day in your resume. The quick answer to this is an emphatic “yes!” When posting your resume on the Internet, you’ll want to steer clear of those keywords that might be associated with the type of job you don’t want. For instance, if you don’t want a position selling insurance, it might be wise for you to avoid the word “sales” in your resume if at all possible. Avoiding keywords is not deceptive—it’s simply a good marketing concept.
An Eye-Catching Resume
By selecting the proper keywords, you should be able to create a resume that truly sets you apart from your competitors, garnering the types of job interviews you’re looking for. A resume that has its fair share of winning keywords can usually pass the keyword-searching test, getting you one step closer to the position you deserve.
About the Author: This article was written by the certified professional resume writers of Resume Writing(http://www.AccuroResumes.com/). The writers at AccuroResumes will help create a perfect professional resume suited to your best needs. See why thousands of people are discovering the benefits of a perfect professional resume written by AccuroResumes.com. You are guaranteed to be 100% satisfied with your new, professional resume or, your money back. Reproductions of this article are encouraged, but must include a link pointing to http://www.AccuroResumes.com/.