Too many books on resume writing are out-of-date. Although well intentioned
and filled with other good information, most have not been updated for the job
search realities of today.
Your resume will be seen by many eyes, including electronic. The computer
will "score" it by the number of keywords (also known as "buzzwords") the
employer will find most relevant. If you don't account for this, your resume
will stay locked in some database while you sit waiting by the phone for the
call that never comes.
Put in a "Keyword Competencies" section.
One solution for the electronic gatekeeper is to include a special section
called a Keyword Competencies section. You want to focus on the words most
likely to be used by either a Human Resources staffing employee or a recruiter.
They search resumes by keywords. The greater number of relevant keywords you can
include, the higher relevancy score your resume will be given.
You should include a separate section that lists all the relevant keywords
pertaining to your career and skills. This section should best be listed at the
beginning of your resume to introduce the skill sets you possess early on from
an interviewing standpoint. Include no more than 75 keywords.
For example, if you were a Java Programmer, your Keyword Competencies section
might look something like this:
"Java, Visual C++, perl, ticl, application development, visual basic, Windows
NT/XP, programming, GUI, html, project management, layer 2, BSEE, etc".
The idea here is to put in as many relevant, searchable keywords that
describe your potential job title and skills. Be sure to include your technical
skills, management or organizational skills, relevant software and/or mechanical
abilities and expertise. Include anything that might be important to the
Added Tip: If you can locate a description of an actual job for which you are
applying, copy in all the applicable buzzwords listed under required and desired
skills. This includes education levels (if they require a BS in Electrical
Engineering, then include "BSEE" as well).
If you spend some time on this, you should easily come up with a list of from
40 to 80 relevant searchable keywords to include here.
Summary There are several important elements to consider when building your
resume, but if your document is not getting exposure then you've wasted your
time. By simply adding relevant keywords you increase your resume's odds of
making it to the "possibles" stack and your receiving a phone call from a
Copyright 2006 Joseph Turner