Lindsay Olson

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Spring Cleaning: Time to Spruce up That Resume

Spring flowers blooming! 花開富貴....桃花运 :)

For whatever reason, come spring, we’re ready to get to cleaning: our closets, our desks, even our refrigerators. But have you given thought to your resume? Even if you’re not actively job hunting, giving it a good airing out and making sure it’s updated to your latest job experience is always beneficial.

How Long Has it Been?

Most of us only update our resumes when we’re looking for a job. And while generally, that’s fine, there are other reasons to consider keeping your resume updated year ‘round. For one, many employers are looking at LinkedIn as the version of your resume, and people are constantly searching the site to find professionals that fill a niche. Even if you don’t think you want a new job, if the right offer came in, you might consider it. And if you haven’t added the last three promotions you’ve received, or consequent skills you’ve gained, you can’t be considered for opportunities those would make you eligible for.

Another reason you should update your resume: nothing is certain. Life changes, business change. In either scenario, you don’t want to have to add updating your resume to the list of tasks you’ll have in finding your next job.

Read It With a Fresh Eye

If it’s been awhile since you looked at your resume, read it out loud and consider whether each section accurately portrays your current experience. Probably your past work experience can stay as-is, though you might find better verbiage for some of it. But make sure your current role is properly depicted on your resume. Have you added other skills, or taken on new responsibilities since you last updated it? What have you accomplished in this past year you are particularly proud of?

Also consider whether the resume as a whole still portrays the professional you want to be. If you’ve suddenly shown interest in a new field or role, your resume should highlight all experiences that would make you a better fit for transitioning in that direction.

Revamp Your LinkedIn Profile Too

It’s easiest to start by editing your resume, then move on to LinkedIn, as much can be copied and pasted. But also look at adding keywords that relate to the work you do, or the industry you’re in. You can change your “headline” on LinkedIn, so zero in on what type of work you want in the future.

Ask for endorsements for the skills you think are your strength, and more importantly, testimonials from people you’ve worked with. If you’ve joined any professional organizations, given any presentations, or otherwise gone over and above in your job, make sure you find a place for these accolades and events on your profile. Also consider joining professional groups on LinkedIn to network with others in your current field or profession, or one you aspire to join.

Create an annual — or even quarterly — task on your calendar to remind yourself to refresh your resume and LinkedIn, to ensure you’re always up-to-date.

Photo credit: Davidyuweb

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