The official blog of Abacus Group — a place to share our knowledge and thoughts on trends in recruiting

December 07, 2020

Getting Your Resume Ready for the New Year


Most professionals view their resume as a stagnant document that only needs to be updated when you are ready to start job searching again. When that time approaches, however, it can be an overwhelming and tedious task to assess whether to keep or delete what you already had written as well as put into words your most recent job experience and any newly attained skills. Getting your resume ready for its next round of applications can take days and slow down the job search you are wanting to embark on.

To avoid wasting time, get your resume updated now so you are ready to start applying in 2021. While you will still need to tailor the details of your resume for the specific jobs and companies you are applying for, getting the initial bulk of the editing completed will ensure you can click apply as soon as a great position presents itself. Here are four ways to get your resume up to date for the new year.

Highlight Your Digital Presence

Sharing your LinkedIn profile is no longer an option; it is necessary. Employers and recruiters alike jump straight to LinkedIn to validate each resume’s content and look into mutual connections, so not only is it important to include your profile’s URL but ensure the details it shares alight with your resume. Additionally, if your previous projects or current skills are best shared through a professional website or portfolio, include that URL as well.

Start with a Professional Summary

For many years, writing a personal objective detailing your goals and aspirations was the standard introduction for all resumes. However, this doesn’t help an employer when trying to determine if you can complete the position’s requirements and meet the company’s needs. A better way to introduce your resume is to begin with a professional summary to explain concisely the strongest aspects of your background in a way that addresses the needs of the specific position.

Keep Your Formatting Simple

As most companies and executive recruiting firms use applicant tracking systems to assess and organize resumes, submitting your resume as a Word document or PDF is best. Additionally, while fancy formatting might be visually nice, it can result in the applicant tracking systems misreading your resume and preventing the recruiter or hiring manager from seeing it.

Only Note Your Cutting-Edge Skills

Most resumes still state proficiency in Mac and PC operating systems or being skilled in Microsoft Office Suite, both of which are expected and no longer make you stand out. Moreover, listing soft skills that note you are motivated, organized, or a team player often makes the impression that you are just trying to fill space on the page. When listing your skills, make sure they are in the latest version of the technologies used in your field and industry, and share any certifications that prove your abilities or knowledge are more advanced than other applicants.

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