Keywords, summaries can help your résumé get noticed
Monster’s career expert Vicki Salemi answers user questions on Quora.com. We’re republishing her answers here on a regular basis. If you have a question, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q. What’s the best way to get my résumé noticed?
A. Hiring managers only take a few seconds to check out your résumé. When I was a recruiter, I literally only needed three seconds to assess a résumé. So the best way to get hiring managers to look at your résumé involves leveraging keywords.
Keywords help you speak the hiring manager’s language. For example, if you’re pursuing a job in human resources, but the job description refers to the role as “human capital management,” tweak your résumé so that includes the keywords “human capital management.”
Other things I was looking for on a candidate’s résumé included direct experience and skills that reflected the job description; and clearly indicated educational degrees. When I recruited Ph.D. candidates in economics, if anyone didn’t have that specific credential, they were immediately dismissed.
Here are some other ways to get your résumé noticed. In your summary at the top of your résumé, highlight any unique skills you have, such as your ability to speak a second language. If you work for a competitor or used to work for a competitor, be sure to highlight that.
Before you apply to jobs, take a few moments to review the job descriptions thoroughly. When you list your skills and experiences, make sure they appear in the same order as they do in the job description—the order tends to indicate their level of importance from the top to the bottom. The few minutes you spend fixing your résumé will be well worth your time.