You would honestly need to have your head in the sand to not know that the job market has changed and will continue to do so.

It is not just the increased competition for opportunities, but the changing recruitment processes due to technology advancement and automation.

So why do many of us continue to dust off the same ‘ol resume’ we first crafted years ago and expect it to represent a clear and relevant professional summation in today’s market?

Let’s be clear. Research has confirmed that recruiters only spend an average of 6.25 seconds looking at a candidate’s resume before deciding ‘yes’ or ‘no’.

Of that, 5 seconds is spent looking at just six things:

  1. Name,
  2. Current title and company,
  3. Position and associated start and end dates,
  4. Previous title and company,
  5. Position and associated start and end dates, and
  6. Your education.

The last 1.25 seconds is spent scanning for keywords that match the open position.

What does this mean?

Understand the purpose of your resume. Your resume is the key tool to give recruiters the critical information they need to put you in the ‘yes’ pile.

It is not a tool for you to tell the world of every amazing achievement you have accomplished – you will have your time to outline this in your interview.

Make sure you summarise the information needed by recruiters on the first page and be selective – include only the information relevant to the opportunity at hand.

For further suggestions (and tools and examples) for your resume I recommend you read ‘What your resume is up against’ by Susan Adams and ‘Six words that might get your resume tossed in the trash’ by Lily Zhang.

Stacey Blanch is a National Business Development Manager in Davidson Consulting and HR Solutions