ANNE-MARIE DOLAN HR Leader, Australian Human Resources Institute
WHILE a qualification is desired or required for some roles, it is not always essential. Experience is often seen by employers as important and, in some cases, more important than a qualification. Summarise the key aspects of the roles you have held, including areas of responsibility. You may wish to outline any projects you were successful in completing, procedures or processes you implemented and any recognition you received during your employment, such as employee of the month. Prepare variations of your CV highlighting different aspects of experience. IF THE job description does not specify required qualifications, your experience and track record may well be enough to score you the role. If the position requires qualifications you don’t possess, it’s important not to shy away from this. If the interviewer asks about existing qualifications, be honest and transparent. Try to shift the focus back to your demonstrated track record and show them how your relevant experience makes up for any shortfalls they feel you may have. Instead of trying to gloss over any gaps in your resume, prove your value irrespective of these holes. ASSUMING a role has no mandatory requirements for a qualification (eg. doctors, lawyers and teachers), most organisations will rank experience, exposure and education, in that order. It’s important to be able to demonstrate the value your experience can deliver. This is best done by creating a series of achievement statements incorporated into your resume. For example: ‘‘ Reduced customer complaint resolution time by 25 per cent through the introduction of technical training to all frontline support staff.’’ Effectively demonstrate the value you will bring. EXPERIENCE and qualifications are valued to varying degrees, depending on the job and context. In many roles – such as administrative, sales, retail, unskilled and even managerial – experience will be considered favourably if you can demonstrate the skills and expertise you have developed. Identify technical and professional skills and knowledge, such as efficient management of time and tasks, understanding customer behaviour and expectations, savvy about office politics, problem solving and effective leadership. A track record of success will be crucial.