Mature job seekers often struggle with how to craft a resume that speaks to their experience without shortchanging their work history or omitting what they believe is important experience.
As a National Able Network Career Coach that works primarily with mature workers, my advice to job seekers over age 55 is to use your resume to show what you can do for an employer now. Your resume should pique an employer’s interest, enough for them to hang onto it and consider you further. Keeping it short and concise will benefit you in numerous ways.
Here are a few items to remember when working on your resume:
- Reflect on your experience. Ask yourself: Is all your experience important to the job you want now? Probably not. The past is over. What you did ten or twenty years ago shouldn’t be there. You may argue that some of what you did is still relevant – and you’re probably correct – but your resume may not be the best place for it.
- Utilize LinkedIn. There are other places to put important experience that highlights your broader skill-set, gives more depth about what you did in various jobs, and is easily accessible to employers. Use a LinkedIn profile to add more detail about various jobs and remember to put a link to your LinkedIn profile on your resume. For jobs that go back a number of years, omit dates. You can add detail without increasing the size of your resume.
- Create a “resume addendum.” A “resume addendum” is something I crafted because I had been consulting for many years. My dilemma was how to get important experience in front of employers without using a three or four-page resume. You may have one or more jobs or projects you’ve worked on over the years that demonstrate skills or knowledge that’s needed for this hoped-for job. A simple paragraph or list for each project can help you fill out a single page that reflects how you and your skills will fit into a new environment. You can flesh out paid employment and volunteer experiences on the addendum, too.
If you can shorten your resume so it passes an employer’s two to three second glance before he or she decides whether to toss or keep it, you’ve accomplished a lot! Help them keep you in the good pile, but give them more than they expected by using your LinkedIn profile page and a resume addendum.
If you’re a mature worker looking for more job search assistance, click here to work with a Career Coach like me at National Able Network!