Wednesday, March 9, 2011

7 Resume Tips for Older Workers

"The game has changed," Budd said, explaining that older workers don't necessarily need to take a different approach to their job search than their younger counterparts. They just need to acquaint themselves with the rules that have emerged post-recession:

Relevancy trumps age
The biggest question boomers may have when they set out to revamp their resumes is whether they should try to mask their age. The answer, according to our experts, is a bit nuanced.

Boomers shouldn't necessarily downplay their age, but should focus on the skills that matter for the position for which they are applying, according to Carrie Krueger, a job search specialist who runs the blog. It's a tactic she suggests for younger demographics as well, and it has nothing to do with age.

Of course, when you write a resume with that in mind, your age almost organically starts to take a back seat. Consider, for instance, the fact that you don't have to include the dates in which you got your college degree to communicate the more important fact: You have one.

"Your age is not relevant to what you can do," Krueger explains. "Employers are ultimately going to hire the person they feel is best able to solve problems and drive value."

Use an achievement-based resume
To show how they are the best person for the job, boomers who still have a traditional chronological resume should consider switching over to the more modern achievement-based or topical one. While a chronological resume may be a good option for a younger job-seeker, it can make it difficult for a boomer, who has 25-plus years of experience, to convince employers they are on top of current trends.

"Years ago, holding onto the job [for a long time] was the accomplishment," Krueger agrees. "Now it's all about achievements. You don't want a resume that says 'I've been doing this a long time.' You want a resume that says I am amazing at doing this job right now."

Get specific
To tailor your resume appropriately, experts suggest refraining from rehashing a list of your duties. Instead, be ready to get very specific.

To illustrate the point, Budd used the example of a football player trying to sell himself. "You wouldn't say 'My skills include throwing a football,'" he says. Instead, you would cite your total yards, your completion percentage and your passer rating.

"You have to find a way to quantify accomplishments," Krueger says. For instance, she suggests replacing the line "I managed a budget" with the statement "I was responsible for balancing an $8.5 million financial plan."

You also may need to rework your resume to tailor it for specific jobs.
"Resumes need to be customized to the exact job you are applying for," Krueger says, suggesting that boomers use the job description to determine what achievements should be included on the page.

Ditch the objective

No comments:

Post a Comment