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Important Functions of a Resume

April 30, 2010

Important Functions of a Resume

By Judy Robbins

Not everyone is aware a resumé has other functions nearly as important as achieving an interview. Not only does it get you the interview, it structures the interview process, reminds the interviewer about you after you are gone, and justifies the hiring decision. There are others but the four that follow are most common.

It Gets You the Interview: First, your resumé must hold up to tough competition. Everything matters, your resume’s format, spelling, organization, and highlighting your strengths and accomplishments. Today’s results-driven resumés are entirely different from those of a year or two ago. Employers are picky and you need to know what they want. Research shows they will screen a resumé in 20 seconds or less. Marketing yourself effectively in a concise way with particular attention to the top ten lines of your resumé is essential to your success. With only one chance to get the hiring manager’s attention and the job you want, you need to capture immediate interest and stand out ahead of other candidates.

It Structures The Interview: Your resumé will give the framework the interviewer follows in forming questions about your employment history. This is an advantage for you since you are already familiar with the information. Your resumé tells enough to create interest and curiosity, yet does not tell the entire story, leaving you room for clarification in your own words. In essence, you will be in control of the interview with the ability to reinforce key accomplishments.

It Reminds the Interviewer of You After You Are Gone: The interviewer will remember a candidate who has a carefully crafted resumé as intelligent and articulate. If the resumé is poor quality, that memory becomes negative and recalls someone ill prepared and inarticulate.

It Justifies the Hiring Decision to Others:  With a long hiring process and many people involved in the hiring decision, your resumé forms the basis for discussion and decision-making. In this, it is an important document. People higher in the chain of command may not meet you personally but will need to be comfortable with your written resumé. Your resumé must hold up to such scrutiny. Submitting a winning resumé is critical or you could lose out at this higher level from someone who has never met you.

Note: Create your resumé from the perspective of the employer/hiring manager and always keep in mind what you want it to accomplish. Be certain to target your resumé for each job you apply for and you will better achieve your career goals.

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