In the last few years, resumes have moved way beyond a piece of bonded paper in a muted color with accompanying cover letter and a plastic-coated paper clip. To conduct a job search in 2013, you need to be on Darwin’s good side and not become someone’s relic in an archaeological dig.
And so, I went on a resume reconnaissance mission for you. I’ve tried to include as many helpful reference links as possible. Here are some current ways to transform your resume into an attention-getting piece of “interview candy”:
Social Resumes Are Still Going Strong Online: A universal truth about LinkedIn: If someone searches for you on Google, your LinkedIn profile is usually the first item to bounce back in the search engine results pages (SERPs).
If you’re serious about representing well while conducting your job search, LinkedIn should be an integral part of your online resume.
Twitter is another venue job seekers use to promote their paper resumes via social media. Here’s an article with great tips on how to craft resume-friendly tweets in 140 characters or less.
One really hot online trend is to use Vizify to create a personal website that displays a graphical biography sourced from your social media accounts. Consider signing up and giving it a try!
QR Codes and Infographics and Word Clouds, Oh My: Having a custom QR code (Quick Response) on your paper resume may not seem an intuitive move. But these days, IT and other high-tech job candidates use QR codes on their resumes to stand out from the madding crowd.
Just make sure the website or landing page linked to your QR code is active, current, and as mobile friendly as possible.
Infographics (summary bursts of statistics and information with accompanying graphics) are quite hot right now across most social media platforms. You’ll probably need a pair of oven mitts to handle yours!
Whether you seek a creative or more data-oriented job, a custom infographic resume could be the thing that catches a recruiter or hiring manager’s eyeballs. A good starting place for creating an infographic resume is Vizualize.me, but there are many other tools to choose from.
An insightful way to improve your resume is by using a word cloud (aka tag cloud) tool or app. This will help you determine if the most frequent keywords in your resume copy are the right ones for your job search. Two popular tools for visualizing your keyword frequency (which relates to relevancy) are Wordle.net and tagcrowd.com.
Your Resume Is As Strong As Its Weakest URL Link: Those inbound links you’re constantly encouraged to secure (by social media ninjas, mavens, and gurus) for your website or blog also belong on your resume, preferably near your contact information.
Don’t be shy about including URL links to your LinkedIn profile, Twitter feed, Google+ account, etc. Also consider a link to your Pinterest board, if appropriate. By doing so you let potential employers know just how “tech savvy” you are (in our current era of swiping fingers on portable glass).
Other URLs that also enhance your traditional resume include links to your work portfolio, your website or blog, and your custom job search landing page (if you’ve created one).
The Top of Your Resume Is the Place to Catch Fire…: Many recruiters and career consultants will tell you the top half of your resume’s first page is the most valuable career search real estate you own. Yes, I believe in a second page if you’ve got attention-worthy experience and credentials.
Unfortunately, most advertised job opportunities are resume “cattle calls” that get winnowed down via software scanning of keywords. But at some point, a human being is going to eyeball your resume for a connection and/or something that differentiates you from the other interview hopefuls.
A helpful post by Laura Smith-Proulx on the Career Rocketeer website suggests you do the following at the top of your resume:
- Tell employers what’s new or relevant
- Show your career progression
- Give your resume a title
- Try a branding headline
- Present your ROI right away
Read Laura’s article in full for detailed examples of her sound advice!
What other resume “tricks or treats” are you sampling in 2013? If you’ve experimented with any of the trends I highlighted in this blog post, what worked well for you as a job seeker? What resume tips imploded upon themselves and left you bereft? Other readers would love to hear your suggestions – please leave a comment if you’re willing to share. Thanks!
Lori Shapiro is the owner of By All Writes LLC, a business writing, editing, and research company in Marlton, New Jersey. She revels in shielding her clients from the pain of writing their own print and web marketing copy. Call her (856-810-9764) or email her (email@example.com) for a no-obligation project quote today!
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