Your New Year's Resume Checkup

Five Questions to Ask Yourself About  Your Resume:

1. Has your career objective changed since the last time you performed a job search?
2. Are still using the same tired resume format that got you your first job?
3. Does your resume feature accomplishments rather than responsibilities? 
4. Was your last job search before to 2000?
5. Are you getting positive or encouraging feedback from your resume?

Let's go through these one-by-one and provide that all important New Year's Resume Checkup. First, the objective or resume branding statement, needs to be up to date. This means that it accurately describes your current skills and that it has the most searched for keywords embedded within the text.   Your objective creates the lens through which a potential employer is going to view your entire resume. Be sure you spend some time crafting a quality one. 

Second, be sure to modernize the look of your resume. This is especially important if your resume is over 5 years old. As a professional resume writer I have to keep up to date with the latest trends. When the time comes to update your own resume you need to either seek out some help, or look at some resume samples from a reputable writer. This way you'll know what employers are expecting to see visually. However, do not go overboard. Some resume gimmicks go a bit too far.

Third, do not fall into the amateur trap of listing job responsibilities. In a competitive job market there will be hundreds of applicants with the same job descriptions as you. How did you perform these duties? What were your accomplishments. These are the things which make you stand out from the crowd. 

Forth, keep your resume current. Focus the most attention on the most recent 10 years of experience. It is OK to go further back in your history if there is something pertinent to it, but do not feel like you need to detail out 25 years worth of job history.

Finally, target a few key areas and send your resume out. See what kind of feedback you get. If you are not seeing results have a professional review it. Your resume is really just a glorified marketing campaign, and the product is you. If your campaign isn't working, try something new.

If you go through these steps once a year you are guaranteed to always have a quality resume ready to perform for you when the situation calls for it.