The key to an effective resume is demonstrating the value you will provide a company. On a resume I reviewed recently, the job seeker failed in this basic goal.
Below is an outline of the content of the resume:
Bachelor’s Degree (the degree was in a field unrelated to the career of the job seeker)
Job Title, Company, Dates (low level management position)
Implemented company strategy as a
Coordinated client service with <list of industries>
Ensure <industry specific regulation> compliance
Manage claims resolution
The resume went on to list several additional positions with similar bullets. This resume does nothing to differentiate the job seeker from others in their field.
The one thing that really stood out for me on the resume was first bullet. Remember that a hiring manager will scan a resume the first time they look at it. In that first scan, only the most important content is read. The reader will typically focus on the top half of the first page and the first line or two of each section. This makes the first bullet of the first job one of the most likely elements to be read.
This bullet says that the job seeker implemented the company strategy for their position. This is essentially saying they followed the guidelines for their position. It certainly doesn’t indicate something exceptional. I’ve actually read similar statements on a number of resumes in the past. My best guess as to why someone would put this on their resume is they can’t think of anything specific.
The rest of the bullets are equally unimpressive. The second lists their basic job function. The third lists a standard government regulation everyone in their industry must follow. The last bullet lists another basic responsibility. The overall effect of the four bullets is to emphasize how unexceptional the candidate is.
In a competitive job market, it is very important to show the value you will provide and why you are better than your competition. If you don’t indicate give a reason why you should be hired, the hiring manager won’t try to think of one for you.