Whether we like to admit it or not, the hiring process can be an extremely random system. Even when applying for a position with a very thorough job description included within the job posting, it can be difficult to determine just what exactly an employer is looking for in their candidates. What can be even more confusing, a hiring committee might not even realize what their ideal candidate might be like until the interviews are already underway. In short, anticipating the needs and desires of a hiring committee is virtually impossible, despite the superficial sense of clarity demonstrated within a job call. For this reason, it is critical that your resume is full of versatile skills and a wide range of experiences – especially your practical skill set that can prove incredibly helpful at the office, and eventually lead to exciting and engaging employment opportunities down the line.
Beating the Resume System:
Understanding the Superficiality behind the Hiring Process
Sure, listing a bunch of skills can be a great way to pad a resume and appear well-prepared for a new employment opportunity. Plus, you never know whether a particular skill or qualification you hold will push you towards the top of their hiring list. For example, a certification in plumbing or in graphic design might not seem connected to your top industry choices, but a company might be eager to hire a worker who can provide those unique perspectives and experiences to their work at the office. Though predicting what practical skills might be most attractive to the hiring committee is difficult, listing a broad range of these abilities increases your chances of getting recognized during your job search.
Personalizing your Professional Document by Listing Unique Skills and Talents
Since the standardized format of a resume is only one to two pages long, there is no question that this document is limited in its ability to represent the full picture of a complex, multi-talented individual. Keeping in mind that recruiters and hiring committees might scan over 20 resumes and CVs in an hour, it is important to make sure your document stands out from the crowd – of course, while remaining professional and impersonal. For this reason, it is important to use your “Skills” section of the resume to highlight what makes you a top-notch candidate. Listing a wide range of transferable skills on your resume is a great way to give potential employers a glimpse of who you are and what you stand for as a prospective employee.
Maximizing the Impact of Your Personal Strengths:
Building from Your Vocational Skills and Talents, Instead of Identifying Weaknesses
If you are building this section of your resume for the first time, do not shy away from noting the most obvious practical skills that you have and continue to hone. Most professionals operate on a negative basis of analysis while in the workplace: they look for the errors, flaws, or problematic areas, steering clear of identifying and acknowledging the positives within the project at hand or talents possessed by an individual. However, building upon the skills and abilities we already possess and consider strengths is a far more productive means of obtaining professional growth.
Earning a commercial driver license is one such skill that builds off of a love and talent for driving, and requires only a minimal amount of additional training to obtain certification in this area. Similar vocational skills and talents, such as technological expertise and communications experience, should also be listed – and backing these talents up through passing a certificate course is a way to underscore your commitment to building upon these talents throughout your career. Such skills showcase what your hobbies and previous projects have been, which demonstrate the values and experiences that you can offer to the company at hand. Working these top talents, values, and hobbies into the descriptions of the employment, experiences, and achievements throughout other parts of your resume is a great way to emphasize these qualities and create consistency throughout the document.