Revive your resume to land a job with a secure future

Whatever the industry, working on your resume will make it easier to land the job of your dreams. Picture: Shutterstock
Whatever the industry, working on your resume will make it easier to land the job of your dreams. Picture: Shutterstock

Resilient occupations. These are the jobs with above-average prospects, that have weathered the shock of the coronavirus-inflicted downturn and will be among the first to bounce back as the economy - and life - returns to normal.

According to the National Skills Commission, most of the resilient occupations in Australia are in three industries: health care and disability services, construction, and education. Those industries are also among Australia's biggest employers, with nurses and carers accounting for 14 per cent of the workforce, and construction and teaching 9 per cent each.

While there is no doubt that the coronavirus pandemic put many people out of work, especially in the retail, hospitality, tourism and arts sectors, job vacancies are now on the rise.

A National Skills Commission report released in September found recruitment activity up 36.2 per cent compared to pre-COVID levels. That's an extra 60,800 jobs being advertised nationally, although there were discrepancies between states with NSW leading the growth and Victoria and the ACT lagging.

Where to find the jobs of the future

The Australian Jobs Report, also released in September, contained good news on emerging occupations, showing where future employment growth might be found, in areas such as: digital marketing and social media; data analysis; business and regulatory practices; and sustainable energy. Health services were there, too.

"Most Australian jobseekers are wanting a secure future," Moussa Namini, chief operating officer of fast-growing jobs platform CareerOne, said. "With the upheavals caused by the pandemic, looking for employment in a resilient industry makes sense, but so does investing in yourself to pursue a career in an emerging employment sector."

CareerOne and ACM, publisher of this website and Australia's largest independent news brand serving suburban, regional and rural Australia, have forged a new, exclusive partnership to help jobseekers find meaningful work that matches their interests and aspirations.

Ditch the old "objective" and write a summary highlighting why you are the best candidate. Picture: Shutterstock

Ditch the old "objective" and write a summary highlighting why you are the best candidate. Picture: Shutterstock

The job section of every ACM newspaper and website is now powered by the CareerOne platform. Look for the Jobs tab in the main navigation bar at the top of the home page to start your search.

Mr Namini said CareerOne's core mission was to offer Australia's best job-hunting experience. Jobseekers who register with the platform are asked a few questions about their qualifications, experience and work interests. Artificial intelligence is used to match their profiles to advertised vacancies. It means the jobseeker doesn't have to create their own search, where they are often left to guess at job titles that may or may not be advertised.

Make a good first impression

Having found a job opportunity, scoring an interview is the next step. A good first impression is key.

"The average hiring manager spends approximately six seconds scanning a resume," Mr Namini said. "It's absolutely imperative to sell yourself. You may only get that one chance."

It's also important to understand how applicant tracking systems (ATS) are used by many businesses, and most recruitment agencies, before a resume even reaches human hands.

"Most jobseekers don't appreciate that before their resume reaches the eyes of a hiring manager, it must first jump through some digital 'hoops'," Mr Namini said.

"At CareerOne, when you create a profile, we provide free and informative feedback about how well your resume is parsed by recruitment technology. Often, despite pouring energy into their resume, a person can be overlooked simply because the ATS did not flag them as a quality candidate."

5 ways to revamp your resume

There can be quite a deal of nuance to resume design and layout, and what to include and exclude, depending on the context - for instance are you applying to a small business owner or a larger enterprise?

The basic aim, however, is to make your resume easy to read and highlight your accomplishments. If you're looking to update your resume, here are CareerOne's suggestions to allow it to shine during its six seconds in the spotlight.

1. Choose your style

Resumes can generally be grouped into three categories: chronological, functional or hybrid. CareerOne recommends the hybrid model as it combines the best of both worlds and is generally preferred by hiring managers. The hybrid format emphasises your skills and accomplishments while minimising gaps in work history.

It is common practice these days to include your LinkedIn information on your resume, regardless of format. Keep your LinkedIn page polished and current. Scrub anything unflattering or controversial from your social media accounts. They will be seen.

2. Focus on keywords and skills

Identify two or three keywords that align with the job description and weave them into your resume. Find ways to incorporate them naturally, without keyword stuffing.

What prospective bosses really want to know is if the applicant has the skills necessary to excel in the position. A good way to show your qualifications before the body of the resume is to utilise a headline statement, which explains why you'd be an ideal fit. It should include your primary keyword.

3. Ditch anything outdated

Get rid of the old "objective" at the top of your resume and replace it with a summary section. Use between two and four detailed sentences explaining why you are the best at what you do. If you don't have an extensive employment history - or there are noticeable gaps in work timelines - shift the focus to your personality and skill mastery.

4. Use action words and quantifiable results

Strong action words give your resume more impact. Words such as spearheaded, awarded and co-ordinated speak to your leadership abilities and merits. Be as specific as possible when it comes to your accomplishments. Titles, recognition and numerical statistics are always a plus. This is one situation where it's definitely encouraged to "toot your own horn".

5. Highlight remote work experience and navigating the pandemic

The pandemic changed the way we do business, on both a local and international level. Office employees went remote and in-store employees went online as businesses went into quarantine. Countless people scaled down their work hours or lost their jobs entirely. How did you adapt to these unprecedented times? Show employers that you can roll with the punches and major changes do not throw you off your game. Share your silver linings from working during COVID, such as teaching your colleagues how to use Zoom and Slack.

Chances are you will be asked about adapting to changing work conditions in some form at the interview, so be prepared to expand on the detail in your resume. Highlighting your adaptability, creativity and determination is a strong suit. Acknowledging the pandemic also shows you stay abreast of current events.

The average hiring manager spends approximately six seconds scanning a resume.

Moussa Namini, CareerOne

CareerOne offers a suite of free advice to help jobseekers put their best foot forward, including how to write a cover letter, prepare for an interview, settle in to a new job and develop their career. More than 25,000 new members are discovering the advantages of CareerOne every month, Mr Namini said.

ACM's managing director Tony Kendall said the new partnership allowed the platform to extend its reach to the media group's monthly audience of 6.4 million across more than 140 publications.

The businesses were an ideal fit, he said.

Read more about ACM

"ACM is keen to do what we can to boost employment prospects across Australia and we believe our partnership with CareerOne will help jobseekers connect with meaningful work," Mr Kendall said.

ACM's titles include The Canberra Times, Newcastle Herald, Illawarra Mercury, the Border Mail, Wagga Daily Advertiser, Ballarat Courier, Bendigo Advertiser, the Launceston Examiner and Burnie Advocate.

This story The jobs of the future and how to land them first appeared on The Canberra Times.