How to Tailor Your Resume for the Job You Want

How to Tailor Your Resume for the Job You Want

When you find your dream job, it’s wise to do everything in your power to position yourself as a great match. One critical part of that equation is tailoring your resume.

If you don’t target the content – instead opting for a generic application that you send out to every opening – your odds of impressing the hiring manager diminish. With a tailored resume, you show precisely why you’re an exceptional candidate for that specific role, increasing your chances of securing an interview.

Fortunately, tailoring your resume for the job you want isn’t a challenge. Here’s a simple process that you can follow, allowing you to target the content quickly and effectively.

Review the Job Description

When you want to tailor your resume, the first step you need to take is reviewing the job description. As you read the content, look for any words or phrases relating to skills, traits, or experiences that are used repeatedly. Additionally, identify the skills or characteristics explicitly listed in the “must-have” or “nice-to-have” sections.

In most cases, the terms you identify using that process are keywords the hiring manager associates with the job. Often, those are the words and phrases that an applicant tracking system (ATS) is designed to seek out during automated screenings. Additionally, it’s what the hiring manager wants to see as they look for a match.

Make a list of all of the terms that align with your capabilities. That gives you an outline of what you’ll want to add when you update your resume.

Identify High-Priority Keywords

Generally, high-priority keywords are those mentioned multiple times in the job description and those listed near the top of the must-have list. In many cases, those are the terms that you’ll want to give priority to when you update your resume. As a result, you’ll want to note them on your list, ensuring you add them in appropriately.

Update Your Professional Summary

With a list of keywords in hand, it’s time to update your resume. Begin with the professional summary. Adjust the phrasing to ensure you can list one to three high-priority keywords in this area. Since it’s often the first thing a hiring manager will read, that can help you stand out significantly. Plus, it ensures the top-priority terms are worked into your resume right away.

Adjust Your Skills Section

After you update your professional summary, it’s time to make changes to your skills section. In the bulleted list, make sure you feature any skills you possess that were listed in the job description, using the exact same spelling as you saw in the vacancy announcement.

Then, reorder your skills list to make sure that capabilities relating to the job requirements are near the beginning. That increases the odds that the hiring manager will notice them.

If necessary, remove any skills that aren’t relevant to the role. By doing so, your list remains concise and focused.

Rework Your Work History

Once you’ve tackled your skills section, you’ll want to update your work history. Review the achievements you’ve included for relevance, ensuring they speak to the requirements outlined in the job ad. If so, update them to include various keywords from your list. If not, replace them with accomplishments that align with the role and that let you highlight the proper capabilities.

When you’ve finished that, you’ll have a tailored resume. If you’d like to learn more about how you can have a successful job search, the team at GSG Talent Solutions wants to hear from you. Contact us today.


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