In today's challenging job market, you need to make sure that your resume
creates an immediate impression on hiring managers and recruiters. However, you may need to tweak your resume depending on a number of things, including your age and work experience.
- Have a clear purpose
Regardless of your age, you need to first of all be sure that your resume has a clear and distinct purpose rather than just being a document that lists your employment history and skills. Your resume should include just enough information to entice the reader to want to get to know you better.
- Determine function over experience
Next, you will have to determine which resume format
works best for you - functional, chronological or a combination of both.
While most employers actually prefer a chronological resume because it's easier to see a candidate's work history, it only works well for job seekers with a solid and strong professional background. A chronological resume, which places emphasis on work and accomplishments, typically works best if you are an older job seeker.
If you are relatively new to the job market or a recent college graduate, a functional resume that focuses on skills may work best for you. Also, if you have been out of work for a while, a functional resume can help deflect attention from gaps in work experience and dates.
You may want to consider a combination resume that lists both skills and experience first. This type of resume, which lists work history second, will help you highlight your relevant skills while providing a clear timeline of your work experience.
Using an online free resume builder
can also help you determine which format will work best for you.
- Sell what you know
If you are an older job seeker, sell your work experience by including examples of your achievements on your resume. The more you show your prior work success, the more you point out how your accomplishments can benefit a potential employer. Job coach Arnie Fertig said it's also important that older candidates include any recent training courses, certifications or other credentials to show they are up-to-date in their field.
If you are a younger candidate, be sure to include your summer jobs, internships or volunteer work along with any relative skills that will give you an advantage over other applicants.