En Route: A Career Blog

Tailoring Your Resume to Refine Your Job Search

AUTHOR: Darlene Zambruski
POSTED: October 3, 2013 at 1:30 pm

You wouldn’t buy a suit two sizes larger than you normally wear. And you would not wear a bathing suit to a business meeting. You want your clothes to fit, be appropriate, and get noticed for all the right reasons. The same holds true for the one-size-fits-all resume. Your resume needs to be appropriate, fitting, but get noticed. It needs to be tailored.

Is Your Experience Appropriate?

Perhaps you’ve worked in another field or industry, but you can still demonstrate how your responsibilities at those positions relate to the employer’s business. Check out the job description and take note of any specific skills that you have, which match what they need. Include relevant experience from your volunteer and academic background, special projects, or leadership roles. Again, focus on the employer’s key words.

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Do Your Research

Check out the company’s website. Find out what they sell, where they are located, how long they have been in business. Research the company’s officers, community involvement, and their mission statement. Position yourself as an expert in knowing all that you can about the concern. Highlight the experience and skill sets that you have that would be a good fit with the way they do business, their product line or the services they provide.

Also Include a Tailored Cover Letter

In the same way that you wouldn’t attend an interview without shoes, sending out a resume without a cover letter is unprofessional. You want the prospective employer to know what position you’re seeking, why you want to work for their company, along with how you can meet and exceed their specific requirements. As stated before, use keywords from the job posting that dovetail with your expertise and abilities. The cover letter is your “foot in the door” so make it count!


Darlene Z.

Darlene Zambruski is a resume writing expert and CPRW (Certified Professional Resume Writer) with more than 13 years of industry experience. She has authored 10,000+ resumes in every industry and at every career level.

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