A resume is a billboard
Essentially it is an advertisement to entice an employer to invite you for an interview. If this document does not stand out no interviews will be forthcoming! This is a door opener and the information needs to be captured in a maximum of 1 or 2 pages. Most bilingual job seekers design a resume employing the “one size fits all” approach. Resumes should be a work in progress, tailored to the requirements of the particular job. This does not mean inventing facts, it means reading and understanding the job description and adapting the resume to highlight skills and experience which match the requirements of the position.
Remember these 6 tips when tailoring your resume for a particular position:
Step 1. Language of Submission
Unless noted otherwise for positions submit your bilingual resume in English. Assume that the person reading it will be English speaking.
Step 2. The objetives and references are a thing of the past:
Today, resumes are required to show more with less content, brevity and thoroughness are implored more than ever. The objectives are essentially a redundancy.
In the era of technology where recruiters are inundated with hundreds to thousands of applications and resumes per day, it is safe to assume that anyone who applies for a position has the goal of acquiring a position or new skills and experiences that pertain to the what they are applying for. Thus, the objective has since become outdated and has since been replaced by the career summary and/or areas of expertise.
Instead of stating the obvious, the career summary details the skills, talents and abilities of the applicant and summarizes how their capabilities apply to the role they are hoping to obtain. In essence, it highlights what the reader can expect to review in the content below. This approach serves as a great way to gain the reader’s attention.
It is recommended to keep a separate sheet of references available for any recruiter should they request them. If one feels a necessity to mention they have references available on their resume or CV, simply insert “References Available Upon Request”.
Step 3. Employment History:
List your positions with the most recent at the top – if the position was a contact or a temporary position say so as you do not want to give the impression of instability. Under the title of your position list your duties and accomplishments. If possible, include meaningful and measurable details. An example of an accomplishment might be, “Reduced the DSO by 30 days or implemented processes which saved the company 20% over the last fiscal year”.
For applicants with a long working history include the last 10 years only. An exception would be if the past experience is relevant and goes back more than 10 years list the employer, the position, the date and one or two lines about the position. Do not include irrelevant positions, for example, if you have 5 years’ experience as a Bilingual Customer Service Representative and are applying for a Bilingual Customer Service position it is not necessary to put that you were a caregiver or worked as a server in McDonald’s.
Step 4. Three Things you forgot to include on your resume
- Freelance or Contract Projects
- Entrepreneurial Projects
- Community Engagement or Volunteered
Remember that your resume should demonstrate what is unique about you, the skill-sets that you have obtained, and how those experiences could positively impact your future workplace.
Step 5. Education and Professional Development
In this final section of the resume, list your education and/or any pertinent Professional Development courses: Start with the most recent. This section becomes vital to showcasing your desire to better yourself in your career. Include the names of the trainings, along with the organization that led the events.
Step 6. Before Submitting your Application
Once the resume is completed review, edit and proofread a few times. If possible have a second pair of eyes read it.
In the U.S., we should never include date of birth, age, social security number, political affiliations/preferences, religious affiliations/preferences, gender preferences, or personal information about family (spouse, children).