The title of this article says it all! My question for you is this: When was the last time you did a resume review?

You should review this important document from time-to-time. Why? Let's face it. We live in an ever-changing environment and the dynamics of the work world change constantly. Are you changing with the times? Not to mention, that little 8.5" x 11" piece of paper needs to represent you in your absence. It's the small print on the parchment that makes or breaks you. It's the invitation to more opportunity or more rejection. It's the start, the beginning, the introduction, the warm-up act. A resume is to getting into a company what golden tickets were to Charlie Bucket of Willie Wonka fame. Do you have a golden resume?

How seriously do you consider the task of performing a resume review?

I get to see resumes often. The things that stick out like sore thumbs to me are many. So, here's a list of things you might think about:

  • Is your contact information correct? Remember that old email address you had that got bombarded with SPAM before you changed it? Did you remember to update your resume with the correct email address?
  • Did you change phone numbers recently? (...and email addresses, physical addresses, etc.) Again, if this is not reflected on a resume you sent out months ago, you might miss the call. Remember, companies keep your resume on file for a long time so it might be a good idea to also reach out to places you previously applied for in order to provide a current resume and updated contact info.
  • Have you updated all of your online profiles and resumes? You applied and didn't get the job. But, since then you've acquired some power skills that make you a stronger candidate than when you originally applied. Someone somewhere is looking at an old, outdated online profile or resume for a job that's out of sight/out of mind right now. Revisit these places and see if they have any open positions. Update your information and re-apply. Let them know! You might get hired!
  • Do you have several versions of your resume? I see many people who consider their resume a "One & Done" document. You need to consider your resume a "LIVING DOCUMENT"! Look for terms and phrases and language that are outdated. For example, if your resume includes your skills at programming computers in DOS, you might need a slight review and revision of your word choice. Have several resume versions available so you can send a "tailor-made" resume that's specific to the job you're applying for. Don't make the prospective employer attempt to make the connection between what you think you can do and what your resume actually says you can do! Leave no doubt!
  • Does your resume speak "loud & proud" with lots of "old & gold"? What I mean by this is that at some point, you need to let go of some of your ancient skills — get them off of your resume! You may have been a stellar performer back in the day. You may have reached performance levels never seen before by the human eye. But, if it happened so long ago and could be considered irrelevant, you might wish to upgrade your resume with more current successes.
  • Can you measure the information included on your resume? When you watch the financial news on television, there's always that segment about how the financial markets performed that day. You've heard it all before, "The Dow was up slightly in active trading with a 14% increase in earnings for...blah, blah, blah." In reality, that is important stuff and very important to a company — especially a company you're trying to work for! That said, wouldn't it make sense for your resume to reflect YOUR ability to increase profit? Most resume accomplishments I see have no measurement of success. Find your before/after story and include numbers represented as a percentage or increase or decrease so that whomever reads your resume can instantly understand the impact you've demonstrated.

Conduct a resume review today and prepare yourself to be represented in the best way possible!