What are employers and recruiters looking for on resumes? Accomplishments. Accomplishments grab an employer’s attention. Recruiters say, “past performance equals future productivity.” Accomplishments also demonstrate that you’ll make a quick recoup of the investment in your annual salary when the company hires you.
Do not fill your resume with fluff such as weak summary paragraphs (“20 years’ experience”), unsubstantiated adjectives (“significantly increased”), or clichés (“dynamic, results-getting professional”). Instead, use specifics. Employers want to see numbers, specifically numbers that demonstrate cost savings, revenue increases, productivity improvements, etc. Numbers that contribute to the company’s bottom line in some manner.
One staffing firm CEO said, “Put a BENEFIT STATEMENT into your resume – something that speaks of how you 1) made the company money, 2) saved the company money or 3) streamlined procedures. Years of experience is immaterial and may indicate that you are just “old.” Companies want to know what kind of contribution you can make to their success – not how many years you’ve been working.”
Here are some questions to ask yourself about each of your jobs, special projects, and other activity beyond the job description:
1. How much additional revenue was generated?
2. By what percentage did productivity improve?
3. By what percentage were workplace incidences or injuries decreased?
4. How much money was saved? (Describe the project and the savings.)
5. By what percentage was turnaround improved?
6. How many labor hours were saved?
7. _________________ went from ___________ to _______________ after employees completed ____________________ program.
The ability to provide “before and after” results is a strong way to demonstrate and communicate your value.
Challenge: Review your current resume. Have you provided specific information about your results? If not, get the numbers and add them into your document. Track the responses to your new, accomplishment-driven resume.
Need more help with your resume? Check out “Resumes that Rock.”
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