A myriad of things. Here’s a quick take on a few that really matter:
- Do you qualify for the job?
Have you looked – really looked – at the job posting qualifications? It might be the case that some employers upon failing to find their best hire, take to bending the “requirements” a bit. Overall however, you should meet whatever qualifications they list, to a tee. The most important qualifications usually reside at the top and the least necessary at the bottom of the list. If you’re amongst the half (or more) candidates who apply to a position without meeting the basic requirements, you’re setting your job search back by leaps and bounds.
- Be aware that customizing your resume will yield greater results
Are you one of the many who employ a one-resume-fits-all tactic? You’re right, sometimes quantity can win the day over quality. But this instance is not one of them. Many employers either employ automated systems to screen resumes – or use good old fashioned human eyeballs to do the job. Either way, your resume needs to match specific keywords that more than likely sync up with postings. Can you say “keywords are my new best friend?” Laborious as it may be, customizing each resume to each application (using appropriate keywords) is the path to the gold at the end of rainbow.
- Make your resume short with key data at the top
Summarize your key strengths for the position. Make your job titles and where you worked clear and easy to find. And make sure it’s well written and error free. You’ll get the boot if the reader can’t quickly and simply locate where you worked with the corresponding positions you filled. The closer those job titles match the one you’re applying to, the better. Be mindful of education also. Many jobs require certain educational credentials; if you make the mistake of omitting them, sadly, you might get screened out based on this mistake alone.
These are just a few key points – but critical to your success. Evaluate your strategy and documents, minimizing those pesky roadblocks for good.