I have said it many times, but it bears repeating: your resume is a marketing tool. As such, it's important to understand your audience. Far too many jobseekers operate under the assumption that a resume should list the tasks associated with your previous roles. Nothing could be further from the truth. For a resume to be effective, it needs to contain resume metrics that highlight your achievements. Those achievements should be quantified whenever possible.
There is truth in that tired business adage that "what gets measured gets done." If you want to stand out from the crowd, you need to ensure that you include metrics on your resume. The average amount of time spent "reading" a resume is a disheartening 14 seconds. That's right – when a recruiter looks at your resume, he or she is scanning it for keywords and superstar accomplishments. If you want to grab the recruiter's attention, adding metrics to your resume is one way to do so quickly.
So, what types of metrics should you include in your resume? While you don't want your resume to look like a math problem, riddled with numbers, what you do want to do is to provide excellent, high-impact measurable achievements.
Resume Metrics: How to Add Them
The purpose of including resume metrics is to create a more compelling story about yourself and your background. To identify which metrics to include on your resume, you'll need to do some self-discovery. Here's how:
- List measurable achievements. When you add personal metrics to your resume, you need to include figures that demonstrate the scope of your accomplishments including the budget, the number of people you affected and the positive impact you made. Look through your resume and make a list of all of your measurable accomplishments for each role.
- Assess and compare. When adding metrics to your resume, assess how your results compared to your peers, to your department, company, or industry. You can pull out numbers and percentages or cost-savings comparisons y, which will instantly demonstrate your effectiveness. You'll want to use the most impressive results in your resume.
- List your firsts. Identify any "firsts" you've had in your career or any firsts within a specific role. If your company was the first to launch a particular product or offer a new service, you should add this to your resume to prove you were part of a strong team, even if you don't have specific results to attach to these accomplishments.
In today's challenging job market candidates must do all they can to stand out in a crowded field of qualified applicants. Adding resume metrics can help you to get noticed.
Examples of Resume Metrics
We've established that you don't want to want to quantify every single thing on your resume. (It's probably not relevant that you were a member of a team comprised of four people, as an example.) So, you need to decide which metrics you should include on your resume, and which ones to leave off. Here are the four types of resume metrics that are relevant, and will grab a recruiter's attention:
- Growth. What did you add to the company? What were your key performance indicators (KPI), and how did you meet or exceed them? What are the numbers that mattered the most to your boss? Revenue? Profitability? Margin? Retention rate?
- Reduction. Where and how did you save money, time or other resources? Can you provide a concrete example of how you helped your company reduce waste, eliminate redundancy, or save money?
- Impact. How did your work help? What was the payoff for your efforts? Did you help people? If so, how many? Did you increase sales in your department?
- Frequency. How often did each bullet point on resume happen? For example, did you write and publish 12 blog posts per month? Or, did you consistently beat your quarterly revenue goals? Do you increase your retention rates year-over-year?
Sample Resume Metrics
Once you've identified the metrics to include on your resume, you need to articulate them in a way that is compelling to your reader. You want to be sure that the metrics you include on your resume help the reader to better understand the story you're trying to tell.
Here are four examples of how to craft statements that highlight each of the resume metrics above:
- Growth: Authored 4 white papers on the emerging digital economy, which resulted in 50,000 downloads by unique visitors.
- Reduction: Sourced new manufacturing vendor, resulting in 23% savings over a 6-month period.
- Impact: Conceptualized and executed a multi-channel social media campaign that reached 200K+ new users.
- Frequency: Consistently beat revenue goals by an average of 9% over five years.
Resume Metrics: The Bottom Line
In today's challenging job market candidates must do all they can to stand out in a crowded field of qualified applicants. Adding resume metrics can help you to get noticed. If you're ready to rewrite your resume to add metrics, consider using a free, online resume builder.