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BEING THE CANDIDATE THE RECRUITER CAN'T WAIT TO TALK TO
When your resume is one of few that come up in a recruiter's search for resumes, you become prize recruiter wants to win. This is reverse of scenario you find yourself in when you reply to a job ad - in that case, job is prize. You gain significant power by being customer recruiter wants to sell job to. Here are some tips for structuring your resume so recruiters will find you in searches and then want to offer you job:
1. Your primary skills should be mentioned several times in your resume, and in different ways. For example, if you're an attorney, you should use that word several times in your resume as well as word "lawyer."
2. Even if you only used a particular skill briefly (like for only 3-6 months), mention it on your resume. If you learned about a certain technique in a continuing education course, that can be mentioned on your resume. Of course you should make clear in text of your resume what specific, albeit limited, experience you have with skill. A company would rather hire someone who has some exposure to a skill than none at all, and by mentioning skill you increase chances you'll be found in recruiter's search for resumes.
3. Your previous job titles need to be congruent with type of job you're seeking. If you're looking for a job as an Administrative Assistant, it would probably be better to have "Administrative Assistant" listed as your current job title than "Office Manager." There are fewer office manager jobs than admin assistant jobs available, and you don't want recruiter to think you're overqualified when they look at your current and previous job titles.
4. Make sure your resume has been checked for spelling and grammar errors. Use spell check in Microsoft Word. Have someone who's a good writer review your resume for grammatical errors.
5. Make it easy for someone to skim your resume quickly. If you have a lot of different skills, having a section where your skills are listed with bullet points can make it easy for recruiter to see at a glance that you have skills they're looking for.
Scott Brown is the author of the Job Search Handbook (http://www.JobSearchHandbook.com). As editor of the HireSites.com weekly newsletter on job searching, Scott has written many articles on the subject. He wrote the Job Search Handbook to provide job seekers with a complete yet easy to use guide to finding a job effectively.