Share this article:
Bookmark and Share

5 Tips for Customizing Your Resume

Hiring professionals contend that an effective resume must quickly and clearly convey how the candidate meets the requirements for the job. The trouble is that each employer usually has a different set of priorities and requirements. Therefore, it is difficult to address the specific requirements of each job when you simply send out the same standard resume to everyone.

Before applying to another position, take the time to adapt the resume in order to address the requirements each employer cares about most. If you put the effort into researching the needs of the employer, you can be assured that they see the information that matters most. Here are 5 steps for customizing your resume:

  1. Get organized. First, identify and write down the key points and requirements sought by the employer. Concentrate on the hardcore skills and amount of expertise needed for the job. For instance, “Minimum 3 years of mechanical engineering experience within the semiconductor industry required.”

  2. Create a powerful headline statement. Begin with a concise statement conveying your title, industry background, area of expertise and amount of expertise. If an employer were skimming hundreds of resumes for a specific type of professional, what headline would entice them to read further?

  3. Summarize your relevant skills. Clearly address all of the points on your list of tangible job requirements. Put this list at the top of your resume. Use concise statements and succinct language - complete sentences are not necessary.

  4. Ignore all the fluffy stuff. Disregard those vague words like “team player” or “problem solver” in the job description, as your resume must focus on the more concrete skills and qualities being sought. You need to show what makes you a team player and which problems you solved. For instance, instead of simply saying “strong leadership skills,” offer something more substantive, such as “Managed a team of 10 developers.”

  5. Go beyond the job description. Just as there are bad resumes, there are plenty of poorly written descriptions. Many job descriptions fail to include very important information such as what industry the company is in, what product they produce, or even what duties the job entails. In these situations, do your own research using the Internet or telephone to fill in these gaps yourself. Be sure your resume addresses any relevant information you uncover. Presenting this critical information could be all the edge you need to set your resume apart from the others.

-Mike Worthington provides resume-consulting services and FREE resume evaluations for job seekers in all industries at also offers specialized job market expertise and content to media and employers.

Phone: (802) 865-4243 Fax: (802) 860-2876