Finding yourself without work can be a devastating set back. Even more so if the circumstances were unexpected like the large number of layoffs that occurred due to COVID-19. First, know that you are not alone. There are many others in the same situation and there are positive steps you can take to get yourself back to work.
Getting your resume ready is often the first thing you can do before starting your search for new employment. If it’s been a while since you’ve had to write a resume, that’s ok. It’s normal to feel overwhelmed and unsure about the process. You may have questions like; what to include, what to leave out and how to organize everything.
One important step to take before you sit down to start writing your resume, is to take some time to identify your career goal(s)/objective(s). This will help you decide what skills to include, what accomplishments to highlight and what information to omit. Your potential employer also wants to know what you want to do, so identifying your career goal (or goals) will help you write a more effective resume.
Now that you’ve pinpointed your objective – Use these 5 tips to help craft your best resume & get you back to work, even after being laid off:
- IDENTIFY WHO YOU ARE
What is your expertise? What title(s) do you hold? Ensure this information is included at the top of your resume in the headline or first sentence. It’s important to convey this information up front as the employer will use this as the context in which to look for specific qualifications. Employers will look for different abilities and skills when reading a resume for an “Accountant” vs. a resume for a “Sales Professional”.
- SHOWCASE YOUR STRENGTHS
Identify exactly what you have to offer. Summarize your most relevant qualifications for the position and a statement that outlines the best reasons you are perfect for the job. Be sure to include how you made a positive impact while in your previous position(s). Outline how you saved, boosted, reduced, raised, or improved any processes during your time there.
- STAY CURRENT
Although you may have great accomplishments from years past, try to highlight your most recent achievements. This will show the employer how relevant your skills are in todays workplace.
- ADDITIONAL EXPERIENCE
After being laid off, how did you spend your time while unemployed? If you have not been working for a longer period, did you fill all (or part) of this gap with professional development, schooling, freelance, volunteer, part-time or contract opportunities? You can use these experiences to mention additional education/schooling, updated knowledge about your industry, and any other experience that might be relevant to the position.
- GET A SECOND OPINION
It can be a challenge to get your resume up to current standards, especially if it’s been a while since you’ve done it, so don’t be afraid to ask for help. Having someone review your resume, or even getting a professional to assist with writing & editing can be a welcome relief.
Spending some time reflecting on your skills, goals, strengths, and accomplishments will help you zero in on your best qualities. Highlighting these on your resume helps potential employers see exactly how you will add value to their company. Even after a layoff, a well written resume attracts positive attention and can help get you that interview