These days there are half a dozen people or more applying for every one job opening. And it is a fact that the person looking at your resume will only spend a few seconds looking it over quickly before going on to the next one. So how can you guarantee that your resume has an advantage over the others? The answer is in judicious use of “power words,” specific words that really make your qualifications and experience “pop.” Some companies even process resumes through scanners which look for certain keywords — and if your resume doesn’t contain the words they are looking for, it will be rejected before a “real” person even sees it. So how do you know which words to use?
First of all, carefully read ads and job-postings for the kind of job you are seeking. Job postings will often contain industry-specific buzz words or qualities that the employer is looking for in a suitable candidate. Choose a few of the words that seem most appropriate, but don’t overdo it. Be sure that the words you use accurately reflect your skills and qualifications. Secondly whenever possible, words that convey action and excitement are more powerful than plain, flat, boring words. You want to catch the hiring manager’s attention. For instance would you rather hire an “experienced manager” or a “dynamic manager?” Try using the most powerful and descriptive active verb at the beginning of each sentence. And third, be specific about your accomplishments and responsibilities . Rather than say, “I was responsible for the budget,” say instead, “I consistently kept our department’s budget 25% below projected costs.” Don’t simply state that you have knowledge of HTML when you could describe the website you created for a client’s photography business. Don’t say you are “highly qualified.” Instead, show them HOW you are highly qualified.
So what are a few powerful buzz words you can pepper your resume with? Try some of these: Accelerated, Accomplished, Accuracy, Achieved, Action, Advanced, Analyzed, Assisted, Completed, Conceived, Conducted, Consulted, Contributed, Controlled, Coordinated, Counseled, Created, Delegated, Demonstrated, Designed, Developed, Directed, Documented, Dynamic, Earned, Eliminated, Enabled, Encouraged, Energized, Enhanced, Evaluated, Expanded, Expedited, Facilitated, Forecasted, Fulfilled, Generated, Identified, Implemented, Improved, Improvised, Increased, Influenced, Initiated, Innovated, Instituted, Instructed, Invented, Launched, Lobbied, Managed, Marketed, Mastered, Maximized, Mediated, Modernized, Motivated, Mentored, Modernized, Motivated, Negotiated, Optimized, Organized, Participated, Performed, Pioneered, Planned, Prepared, Produced, Programmed, Promoted, Published, Pursued, Quantified, Recommended, Redesigned, Reduced, Reinforced, Reorganized, Restructured, Revised, Revitalized, Simplified, Solved, Spearheaded, Specified, Standardized, Stimulated, Strengthened, Supervised, Supported, Surpassed, Targeted, Taught, Trained, Transformed, Unified, and Updated.