As a recruiter, I’ve reviewed many applications and resumes that seem to be a bit outdated. Was your last job really ten years ago? It looks like you’re working two full-time jobs – did you leave one or are you really working all those hours? Job seekers may not understand the importance of updating their resume. In fact, the time to update your resume is not when you’re looking for a new job, but the entire time you are with your current employer.
Promotions (or demotions) at work – A promotion is an excellent time to update your resume with your new job assignments and skills. Make sure to update your resume every time you change positions. Your new skills may be just what a future employer will be looking for.
New tasks and responsibilities – Have you learned something new? Assigned a prime project? Make sure you update this information on your resume. Don’t use the cookie-cutter information found in the job specification, make sure you talk numbers. Detail the size and scope of the project, the allotted budget and whether or not you were on target or came in below budget. How many staff did you supervise? Each time your job changes you should have a new entry on your master resume.
What happens if you’re not working? Are there still opportunities to update your resume? Absolutely! Are you volunteering with a local non-profit? At your child’s school? Are you taking classes? This is great information to include on your resume. It is particularly useful in filling in those “employment gaps”.
Resume looking a bit long? That’s fine. Consider this your master resume. This is the document where you will store the important information to apply for future positions. You won’t use all of the information for every job, but you will have the information you need to show the employer you are the best fit for the position. It’s always best to have too much information on your master resume rather than not enough because it provides plenty of material to choose from when applying for a job.
One important factor to remember is that employers are looking for attention to details. Sloppy applications and missing information is not going to earn your application a second look. An application-ready, master resume will help you get the jump on the next position you apply for, so be sure to keep it updated.