Career Management

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Phase 3, Step 9 - Customize Your Resume and LinkedIn Profile

It is necessary that you tailor your resume for every application. Employers only want to see a tailored and well-organized resume that highlights your accomplishments. These days, your LinkedIn profile is an extension of your resume and should match but also allows you to add more information.

Customize your resume for a particular job that you really want. Employers are looking for people who did enough research on their company and their position to customize the resume and cover letter for that particular opening. Yes, it takes time but in this marketplace, it is the only way to make yourself stand out. This is definitely an iterative process, and you will want to continue to customize it for every different job for which you apply. However, you will know you have completed this step when customizing your materials becomes routine and you are getting callbacks for interviews.

Deliverable for GSM5108: Select the mock internship for which you will apply (see WISE for the list of possible internships).  Refine your one-page resume with this particular job in mind.  Ask your PCA to review it before turning it in.  (Director and executive level positions justify a 2-page resume. Those with 10 years or more of related experience can also justify a 2 page resume as well as any level within the public sector.)

Questions to ask yourself:
1.    Imagine you are the hiring manager, why would you be selected from the pool of candidates?
2.    What are the expressed qualifications for the job?
3.    What are some key words that the recruiter might search for in a database of resumes to find the ideal set of candidates to interview?
4.    What else do you know about this organization from your research that would make you an ideal candidate?
5.    How can you uniquely add value to this employer?
6.    Can you succinctly answer the question ‘tell me about yourself’ in three bullet points?
7.    What are some of the challenges this company faces in the marketplace? How can this role expand to help the organization meet the challenges? What additional qualifications might they be looking for?

Going Deeper:
•    Start with your resume and update the ‘summary of qualifications’ to include the top three reasons why you are the best candidate for this particular position.
•    Go through the rest of your resume and make sure that every bullet point supports the summary.
•    Look at the list of key words you think the recruiter will search for and make sure that each one is in your resume at least once if not multiple times where appropriate.
•    Add any relevant information that you think goes above and beyond the stated qualifications and makes you an ideal candidate to meet the company mission or a challenge you see in their industry.
•    Have a friend or colleague proof-read your resume before sending. There’s something about cutting and pasting, editing and customizing that makes it easy to have typographical errors that we do not see or track changes that do not get erased.
•    Make sure your LinkedIn profile matches your updated resume. Your resume and LinkedIn profile should scream, “I am a great candidate for ABC positions!” not “I’m a generic MBA candidate".


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