AGE 50 AND OVER JOB HUNTERS SERIES: FINDING THAT JOB – WRITE THAT RESUME – Part 1 – Research
The digital resume.
In my most recent blog, “Age 50 and Over Job Hunters Series: Finding that Job – Where to Start?” we went through the process of getting ready to write your resume. When you are laid off after many years on the same job, it is difficult to know where to start. Usually, the first thing you want to do is write your resume right away. You do need to do this, but first you need to educate yourself. Unless you take this step you may end up wasting a lot of time.
New rules for resumes if you are over age 50.
There are new rules to follow that are not at first apparent on the surface. Millennials and younger generations cut their teeth on computers. Most grew up with them in the home or at least in the schools. As a senior job hunter, over the age of 50, most of us did not have modern computers until we were in our 20’s or 30’s. Job hunting was done the old fashioned way; you used a paper resume. That era is over. Now you write your resume for digital distribution and it must survive a computer selection process.
Many of the techniques in this blog are broken down into bite size pieces, and can be quickly found in the drop down window for Quick Tips. This longer blog will be broken into a parts so that it is easier to follow the steps needed and explain the “why”.
- First do the research.
- Second put your self in the shoes of the recruiter.
- Follow the rules by “breaking” the rules.
- Set up the job sites. Start sending resumes.
First do the research.
If you read my last blog linked above, then you know you need to take a breath and give yourself some time. Hopefully, during this reflection period, you have been surfing the job sites to see what is available in the job market. You have decided what kind of work you want to do. You have decide how much salary you need. If you know what it is you “want” before you start then you are ready to write your resume.
Know what you want to do when looking for a job.
To begin with, this blog site is geared toward those of us that are age 50 and over, and have written a resume before. It makes the assumption that you have created/read resumes, and in some cases, hired people based on a resume. Basically, it starts with the premise that you have experience, and a good bit of job savvy. If you have never written a resume then this site can still help you, but you may want to do some additional research first.
Overall, a resume is just a snap shot of you and your qualifications for any given position at this point in your life. By age thirty, forty or fifty, if you have been in the workforce for a while, you have it in spades. The problem in this current job market however, is you may have too much experience. So we have to work out how much to share and with which jobs to share it with.
Pulling the resume together.
Here is what you need to get started:
- Know what you want to do.
- Find 5-6 postings that have that job description.
- A pad of paper and a pen. (really the easiest way)
- Your old resume.
You can probably figure out where we go from here, but this is an important step. You know what kind of job you want, and you have found your job descriptions for that job. Print the descriptions out so you can lay them side by side on a large table. Get a highlighter and look for the keywords in each description.
One interesting way of finding keywords in a description is by using a free “word cloud” generator. I found a good YouTube episode that shows you exactly how to do this. As you look through the similar job descriptions, you will see different keyword terms used for the same role. This is the “gotcha” in today’s online job search, and the reason you have to write a new resume for each job. However once you have your main digital resume written this is easy to change.
When you have your keywords written down you are ready to start writing your resume. The list of keywords you gathered play an important role in your writing. These steps are shared in the book I listed on my reading page, “Knock em Dead Resumes”. This great book describes this process in much more detail.