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October 22, 2017

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Is Your Resume Too Cluttered?

The most common mistake among many jobseekers is not updating their resume in the correct way. All too frequently, those in search of a new job pull out their most recent resume and simply add details of their latest position.

This easy to fall into habit makes for a very long and boring read for hiring managers. If you don't edit or delete obsolete information, your resume can very easily become cluttered and long-winded. Here are a few tips that will help keep your potential employer awake and interested while evaluating your qualifications and experiences.

Determine your goals and keep your resume relevant.

Not enough job seekers stay focused on what they really want from a position or even what position they want for that matter. By determining ahead of time what your job goal is, you will be able to maintain focus. Consequently writing your resume around your goal will be easier. If you have more than one focus, make sure to create multiple resumes for each one.

Focus on your accomplishments versus your duties.

Show a potential employer how you made a difference in the past, not just what you were required to do for the job. Place your skills in a short summarized section. By summing them up you give yourself something to discuss during an interview. Point out your accomplishments and quantify exceptional events. If you keep your accomplishments general, it can easily go unnoticed.

Ditch the self-centered, general objective statement.

Employers don't care what you are looking for. They want to read what you can do for them. Get their attention immediately and stay focused on the employer instead of you. For example, here is the objective statement from a reader who recently sent in a resume to be reviewed.

"Highly qualified professional with over 10 years of significant experience seeking a position with an innovative organization." What does that mean? Qualified in what? What does he/she consider innovative?

This objective statement could be rewritten to answer all of those questions and keep the focus on the employer. "Customer centered professional offering more than 10 years of experience in a fast-paced environment seeking a management position in the airline industry." See the difference?

Keep your education current.

If you are a recent graduate, noting when you received you high school diploma is ok. If you are fresh out of college, internships and honors could be displayed. However, if you have been employed for a few years, then remove your high school information and list only the degree(s) you hold (if any) and when you received them.

Customize your resume for every position.

It's career suicide to have only one generic resume that you send to every job opportunity. Each time you apply for a job, recreate your resume to fit that position, just like you do your cover letter.

The most important thing to remember when creating your resume is to think like the employer. With each and every resume you send out, make sure you address what you have done in the past, how it benefits your potential employer, and how you are you able to put those things into action and duplicate your past successes.

- Jennifer Anthony

Jennifer Anthony is the Director of Online Resume Service, offering professional and affordable resume writing services. If you have comments about this article, or if you are interested in learning more about professional resume writing, please contact Jennifer Anthony by e-mail at resumeasap@gmail.com.

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