The first step to securing a new job this 2021 is to impress the hiring manager with your resume.
The content, formatting and design of your resume are only some factors that you should consider. Taking an extra effort to prepare a winning resume will help you stand out to potential employers.
Landing a new position in 2021 is not an easy task, and there’s a great chance that your resume is preventing you from being shortlisted. In this article, we’ve listed down current resume trends in 2021 that could lead you to better job opportunities. These tips will help you prepare a resume that just might be the key to getting your dream job this new year.
Write your resume for robots and human readers
This 2021, more companies are going to use an Applicant Tracking System (ATS) to narrow down the talent pool. ATS compares hundreds of resumes to the job posting and then rank applicants based on keywords from the resume.
The HR team will then review the resumes of the top qualified applicants (around 10) based on the ATS scanning outcomes. Out of the resumes seen by the HR team, only around 6 applicants will get phone screening interviews. Subsequently, only around 4 applicants will have their resumes forwarded to the Hiring Manager for a face-to-face interview.
Hence, your resume has to be written for three audiences: ATS, HR and Hiring Manager.
Your resume needs to be in a format recognisable by ATS and should have keywords that match the job ad. It also needs to have certain skills, experience and achievements that the HR reader and Hiring Managers are looking for.
Create a targeted resume for each role
A one-size-fits-all resume won’t help your job search. If you want to impress your potential employers, you have to customise your resume for each specific job.
Start by drafting a ‘base’ resume version. This ‘base version’ is usually longer since it has all the information about everything you’ve done in your employment history.
Then, analyse job postings to identify the required qualifications and preferred skills. On your resume, only include the details that are directly mentioned in the job ad to create a leaner, more targeted version. Make sure to use the exact words used in the job description for ATS purposes.
Strategic use of colours
Our 2020 resume advice still holds true this 2021 in terms of using colours on your resume strategically. As a marketing document, your resume has to convey your personality through the use of colours.
Keep your resume looking professional by using conservative colours for key sections. For example: your name, section headings and dividers. Choose a maximum of two colours and keep the rest of your content easy to read with a standard black font.
Avoid bright colours including red, orange and green. Stick with light colours such as grey or light blue.
Include a clickable link to your LinkedIn profile
This 2021, you’re already at a disadvantage versus other applications if you’re not on LinkedIn.
Because it makes the task easier for HR teams to validate your work history. Your LinkedIn profile also helps them obtain more information about you than the little information they can get from your short resume.
Add your LinkedIn profile link to you contact information on the first page, below your email and phone numbers.
Your LinkedIn should not be a copy-paste exercise of your resume. It should be written in first person and more conversational in tone. Make sure you’ve optimised your LinkedIn content to improve your chances of being shortlisted.
Condense roles older than 2010
Listing 10, 20 or 30 years of work experience can clutter up your resume and make it much too long. There’s no standard length when it comes to Australian resumes, but ideally, it needs to be 4 pages at most.
If you have an established career track, you can summarise your experience more than 10 years old into an ‘Early Career’ section.
If your roles 10+ years ago are still relevant to the positions you’re applying for, limit your bullet points to a maximum of 2-3, just to provide a general overview of your responsibilities and achievements.
If these roles are no longer relevant, you can just list the job titles, company names and the years you worked there (without including details on responsibilities.)
Or you can group all older positions together as additional experience. Sample below:
- Additional experience includes roles as an Administrative Assistant (XYZ Company), Executive Assistant (ABC Company) and Receptionist (123 Company)
Keeping your resume lean, using appropriate design for all readers, and making sure you’ve incorporated the right keywords and skills on your resume are some of the important factors in building an effective resume this 2021.
These resume tips in 2021 can keep your ground in the competitive market. Updating your resume can indeed cost you a significant amount of time and investment. But you’ll soon find that it’s well worth the extra effort as it means getting your foot in the door and achieving your career goals.
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