The New Year brings with it many different challenges, but we can all agree that looking for a new job is task in all its own league. Aside from facing fierce competition that has its eyes equally set on the same job, there are plenty of other things to be taken into consideration in order to conclude a successful application process – and adapting to the latest trends in resume writing is certainly one of those things.
But as trends tend to come and go, adapting to the constantly changing needs of the labor market seems like an impossible mission. However, combining the trends already spotted in 2018 with the well-known criteria of putting together a convincing CV (and cover letter) could end up as something equally beneficial for both recruiters and future employees.
The Art of Standing Out From the Crowd (2018 Edition)
No More Childish Mistakes
To this day many applicants pay little to no attention to proofreading their resumes. Whether intentional or accidental, the general consensus from applicants is that recruiters are only interested in what they are capable of and not the grammatical correctness of the resume.
Sadly, they couldn’t be any more wrong. According to a 2013 survey by CareerBuilder, 58% of recruiters automatically reject CVs with typos and bad grammar – and the situation hasn’t changed since then. Thankfully these mistakes can be easily avoided: the internet is full of solutions that can help candidates put together a pitch perfect resume that would just as easily ace a grammar test as well.
The overall appearance of the resume also plays a crucial role in getting hired, but not in the way you think. In fact, current trends show that the simpler the CV the better: a logical structure, a font that is easy to read (and is neither a cursive handwriting style nor plain old Times New Roman) and a unique layout that ditches any unnecessary elements – including photos – are the key to success.
Keywords: Complying With the ATS
A logical, appealing design is one thing, but the real deal is in the contents of the resume. This is more important than ever since many recruiters use an applicant tracking system (ATS) – software that is programmed to look for different criteria in CVs, such as skills, experience and certain keywords.
As such the only way to make sure the resume ends up on the desk of an actual human being and not in the digital trash bin is to include the necessary number of relevant keywords either by looking them up in similar job advertisements or, if you are using a resume builder, selecting them from the list of words provided by the program.
Nowadays a vast majority of employees – and increasingly even employers – consider the whole concept of the traditional resume a waste of time, especially in an era where most applications happen online. So, it’s logical that sooner or later attention will shift towards digital resumes and portfolios – the signs of which are already visible thanks to sites like Indeed, LinkedIn, VisualCV or Resumonk.
Although digital resumes will be as simple and brief as their traditional counterparts, putting them together will be child’s play – especially with the right solutions – and they will also provide better self-advertising options and a faster means of getting the resume to the right place.
The Importance of Social Media
Job seekers are well aware of the importance of having an up-to-date, professional LinkedIn profile. However, as much as LinkedIn is useful, the vast majority of profiles withhold important information about candidates, such as age, past jobs, education backgrounds, and even interests.
This is why it’s not surprising that 70% of recruiters look up candidates on Facebook, too in order to learn more about them and see how well they might fit into the workplace. Granted, this might seem a bit like cheating from the employee’s point of view, but with a little bit of cleanup most Facebook profiles can already pass this test.
Adding a Pinch of Personality
By creating a resume, a social media profile or a portfolio you are already showing some of your personality to the world. But let’s face it: even if the CV is a masterpiece, it will never be much more than a piece of paper or a set of digital data containing vital information – unless you’re willing to step out of the shadows.
And this only requires a little follow up: by contacting the recruiters in person before and after the submission process, your chances of being selected for interview and ultimately hired will increase significantly.
Best Resume Builders of 2019