Is Your Resume Holding You Back From Your Dream Life?

Is Your Resume Holding You Back From Your Dream Life?

What is holding you back from your dream life? 

Embarking upon the task of finding a new job can be daunting, to say the least. Digging out your old resume stirs up all the feelings of insecurity and unpreparedness, and in some cases, sheer panic… especially if the resume feels like it is from the Middle Ages, hiding in a dark cupboard somewhere all covered in cobwebs on a floppy disk. Even if you had your resume updated only a few years ago, trends change quickly and what was once modern and eye-catching now looks outdated and boring. Gone are the days of arriving without an appointment to knock the socks off the HR (Human Resource) Manager, in your most professional outfit and best smile. These days, every job application must be submitted online in electronic Microsoft Word or PDF format, often accompanied by a Cover Letter and at times also featuring a document that addresses the role’s Key Selection Criteria. 

Not only are the format, colour palette, and design extremely important to grab the attention of the reader but now with the use of an Applicant Tracking System (ATS), using the right keywords is crucial to being noticed. Presenting a resume that is ATS friendly is vital to getting through to an interview stage, or at least to the eyes of a human. ATS systems are used to sift through and deliver the most relevant applicants to the Hiring Manager, saving the organisation time and manpower when dealing with a high volume of applications. This makes excellent business sense, however, without knowing these new rules the perfect applicant can slip through unseen. This is where we come in. 

Another common mistake is simply listing the tasks you performed in past roles without including the impacts and results you delivered. By demonstrating that you possess the skills relevant to the job you are applying for, you begin to speak the employer’s language! Not only do they want to know that you have the relevant skills and experience, but they also want to see what outcomes you contributed to. This is where we must highlight the metrics and context of your role.  

When writing your resume, it is important to ask yourself lots of questions, such as: 

  • How many did I do?  
  • How much did I save?  
  • What percentage increase or decrease was reported?  
  • How much revenue did your skills bring to the company?  
  • How did your skills and insight reduce costs? 
  • How did your unique experience increase the capabilities of the team?  
  • How did your leadership skills inspire excellence and align team performance to achieve objectives?  

Prospective employers want to know that not only are you a reliable, proactive, and motivated leader/manager/employee but they want to know EXACTLY what these skills can bring to their company. Every role has targets and goals just as every role has opportunities to grow and excel. What we do here at The Perfect Resume is home in on these areas and highlight your awesomeness! 

Another nail in the proverbial coffin is focusing on how great the company that you worked for instead of focusing on YOUR greatness. Some resumes that come through for review scream the organisation’s accolades from the rooftops but forget to do the same for themselves. The employer does not want to know how great the company is (and if they do, they will use their Googling fingers and do the research themselves) they want to know about YOU and what YOU can bring to THEIR company. 

I know, it can be scary, but WE believe in YOU!  

Our team is highly trained and knows exactly what the employer wants to see. By harnessing our team’s real-life experience within industries that are vast and varied, we can speak their language on your behalf. We introduce your unique talents in a way that shows the prospective employer who you are, what you have achieved, your future potential, and how you will fit into their culture.  

What Recruiter Biases Are Affecting Your Chances of Career Success?  

You will encounter many barriers on your journey to landing the job of your dreams!  

Never fear though, we are here to help. Recruiter biases are where candidates suffer in the hiring process and miss job opportunities due to bias motives. Bias happens where recruiters make hiring decisions based on subconscious emotion, perception, and stereotypes. The candidate is judged not only on their skills and competencies but also on unspoken criteria which makes the process less objective. The most common biases are job-hopping, age, and culture/nationality. 

Let’s take a look at a couple of examples.

 RESUME BEFORE PAGE 1Before  RESUME AFTER PAGE 1After

 

 RESUME BEFORE PAGE 2Before 2  RESUME AFTER PAGE 2After 2 

 

 RESUME BEFORE PAGE 3Before 3  RESUME AFTER PAGE 3 

In the first example, the applicant’s resume featured multiple biases before we got our hands on it.  

Firstly, with 6 jobs in 10 years, this applicant faces a bias to job-hopping. Job hopping is a recruiter bias because it costs a lot to train someone up, the business incurs a loss of productivity while someone new learns the job, and the business may face potential damage if someone starts a job, changes things then leave a mess for the company to clean up. Overall, job-hopping is not seen positively and is more detrimental to a resume than it is helpful. Furthermore, employers get a return on investment after 2-3 years of employment while remaining with a company for 4+ years shows loyalty which is a highly valued trait. On the other side, 7 years or over in a job does not have the diversity of employment or career progression that recruiters want to see… herein lies the art of delivering a balanced resume that presents you in your optimum light. 

Do not worry, we have your back! 

Secondly, age bias is a quite common “resume fail.”  

Here at The Perfect Resume, our team of professional resume writers are trained to focus on the most relevant experience and gather information from roles within the past 10 years only. There are tricks of the trade to include older roles should we deem it beneficial but only under exceptional circumstances do we do this.  

When recruiters are looking to hire an employee, they are seeking someone that will fit, and often someone that they feel they will be able to relate to. Subconsciously, we feel that we will relate most to people within our own age group.  

Should the HR representative be 25 or younger, then an applicant referencing job experience gained in 1996 would have gained it before the person was even born!  

We know how to present all an applicant’s relevant experience and amazing achievements without highlighting how long ago it was attained or drawing attention to the age of the applicant.  

An applicant in the higher age range could be deemed antiquated and not up to date with modern trends, and similarly, an applicant in the younger age range could be seen as an inexperienced “whippersnapper” or not be seen as mature enough to meet the role’s needs. What we do is help your resume get seen and increase your chances of getting through to the interview stage. Once you are in the room with the company’s recruitment representative, biases will not matter as you show them just how perfect for the role you are! 

Lastly, cultural bias creates a HUGE barrier for non-Australian applicants and applicants for which English is their second language.  

For example, if the applicant’s experience and education were completed in India, many hiring managers would be deterred from further exploring the applicant’s suitability as they prefer people with local experience. In this instance, we pull out all our resume writing magic to subtly focus on the applicant’s relevant skills and experience without featuring specific information on the country in which they were gained. In doing so, we bring the reader’s attention to the applicant’s suitability for the role and bypass any elements that may create a barrier. 

What are some of the tricks we used to increase this client’s chances of success? 

With our range of professional, visually appealing, and informative design templates for you to choose from, we already have you one step ahead of the competition! We have even conducted psychological research on the emotional impacts of colour, font, and layout! Yes, we are THAT good.   While delivering YOUR unique skills and experience in an impactful format we also focus on using achievement-orientated statements and demonstrate YOUR credibility with social proof concepts, such as metrics, tangible project outcomes, and complex issues YOU have overcome… not to mention highlighting any positive feedback, accolades, and awards YOU have received in your career.   If you need help getting your foot in the door, submit your resume for a free review via the link below and our team will be on your side cheering you on every step of the way.  

Free resume review