Resume writing is both a Science & much more an Art. Infact, these days, it has become a business, where professionals help you write out Resumes in different formats based on your seniority & type of role you are keen on.
Howsoever sincere you may be in preparing a CV & a comprehensive covering letter, what happens to it once you’ve applied for a job/role, is anybody’s guess.
As an Applicant, you would like to believe that when you send your Resume to an employer, someone (usually HR) at the receiving end reads the entire document, word for word.
In reality, your covering letter & resume may not be seen & most likely, will never be read in its entirety. The real thought process crossing the recipient’s mind is more of reasons for elimination from further consideration while screening.
In today’s job market, employers are overwhelmed with the number of applicants they get for each job, most of whom are not remotely qualified.
In the simple point-and-click world of online applications, many people apply to hundreds of jobs whether they are qualified or not, in the hopes that they might get lucky.
We all know that successful applications are not a random match—luck has less to do with being selected than carefully choosing job opportunities and clearly matching the job requirements.
An employer’s only hope of finding the qualified candidates in the hundreds of resumes is to reject as many as possible, as quickly as they can. If they don’t see the connection between background and experience and the job requirements immediately, they move on.
If your resume uses good grammar & has no spelling mistakes, the recruiter will park it in the “Maybe” stack. This step usually separates the “maybe” candidates into two groups — those who are rejected and those who will move forward, likely invited to interview for the job.
Here are a few tips to make your resume stand out –
- Make sure your resume portrays “I’m a fit!’ in that initial scan.
- Customize your resume for each opportunity.
- Your relevant work history must be clearly highlighted.
- Appropriate skills, experience and certifications must jump out (bold face font).
- Use appropriate terminology from the employer’s job description, not your own.
- Be brief. Write concise (easily digested in a quick scan) phrases, not long sentences or paragraphs.
- Resume should not be very long.
- Be very very careful with spelling and grammar. Typos can end opportunities very quickly! Carefully proofread your resume, and, if possible, have someone else proofread it, too.
Understanding the typical process on the employer’s end when reviewing resumes can help you be more strategic in crafting your resume so that it has the best possible chance of being selected.
The Bottom Line
Always consider the process form the employer’s point of view! What do they want?
About the Author: Aparna Sharma
“HR Practitioner, Board Member, Academician, Best Selling Author & Motivational Speaker “
After completing her post graduation in Personnel Management & Industrial Relations (PM & IR) from Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), Mumbai, Aparna made her foray into the corporate world through Nocil and moved into different roles in the HR function in organisations like Monsanto, Novartis, UCB, Deutsche Bank, Lafarge & Greaves Cotton. In her diverse roles, Aparna has successfully been a learning partner, mentor and coach to leaders, leadership teams and organisations to build competencies, learning abilities and nimbleness for achieving purposeful performance.
She has recently been awarded Doctorate in Human Resources from California Public University, U.S.A. Her research is very contemporary & on an interesting topic of “Future of Work & Workplace-2025”.
An alumnus of IOD, Aparna was an Independent Director on the Board of T.S Alloys Ltd.(100% subsidiary of Tata Steel) & now on the Board of Rajratan Global Wire Limited. With 24 years of experience in HR across different verticals, she is currently contributing as a Board Mentor with various boards & as an advisor to various corporates in areas such as Strategic Leadership, Planning, Organization Behaviour & Strategy for Board Room Effectiveness, Organization Culture & Development, Leadership Relationships, Temperamental Traits & Derailment Factors within Boards etc.
She has been felicitated with the “ Best Employee Experience Personality of the Year 2020 ”, “ Indian HR Champion of the Year-2019”, “ Indian Business Woman of the Year 2019” award by MORPEHUS Enterprises, “ILDC-AMP Woman Excellence Award 2019 for Learning & Development”, “Best HR Trainer” by ICBM-AMP Academic Excellence Awards 2018, “Woman Achiever Award 2018” by Indian Women Convention (IWC),“MTC Global Outstanding Corporate Award for Excellence in Human Resources” during the 6th Annual Global Convention –SANKALP 2016, “Women Achievers Award” by World HRD Congress & Institute of Public Enterprise in 2013, “HR Super Achiever Award” by Star News at the 20th World HRD Congress 2012 amongst many others.
Winner of many accolades like ‘Women Leadership Award’ for BFSI (Banking, Financial Services & Insurance) Awards by Institute of Public Enterprise (IPE), Hyderabad, ‘Achiever of Excellence Award’ by Bombay Management Association (BMA) & Indian Society for Training & Development (ISTD, Mumbai), she is regularly featured as one of the top women HR Leaders in the country & quoted as a Thought Leader in HR. Under her leadership at Lafarge, many in-company Global Awards such as ‘Digilearn Championship Trophy’ & ‘WAVE’ (Women Adding Value & Excellence) have been received besides external recognitions like CLO (Chief Learning Officer’s) Award consecutively for 3 years.
Beyond her corporate role as an HR Leader, Aparna also dons the hat of HR contributor through her associations with Indian Society of Training & Development (ISTD), All India Management Association (AIMA), National Institute of Personnel Management (NIPM), National HRD Network, and Sumedhas, where she actively participates in disseminating her acquired knowledge and build the HR fraternity by creating future leaders. She was the Honorary Treasurer of National HRD Network, Mumbai Chapter (2012-2015) and a member of the Executive Committee. She was also elected as member of the National Executive Board of NHRDN for the period 2013-2015.
Aparna is a celebrated author of 2 best selling books – “Reality Bytes-The Role of HR in Today’s World”, (English & Hindi) Foreworded by Dr. T.V Rao & “ Between U & Me” , Foreworded by PadmaBhushan PadmaShree Dr. Devi Shetty.
To know more about Aparna, visit: – www.aparnasharma.in