Something unusual is happening in the job market. Last September, more than four million Americans quit their jobs, according to statistics recently released by the U.S. Labor Department. This happened at a time when there were more than 10 million job openings.
Some call the “Great Resignation” a labor shortage. Others call it a wage shortage. We call it an opportunity. With so many openings, and a high demand for labor, there has probably never been a better time to be job hunting. If you’re going to be job hunting, then you need to have a powerful resume. Whether you’re looking to change jobs, seek a promotion within your current organization, or even change industries it’s a great time to dust off that resume and give it a new polish. Aside from it being a “worker’s market,” here are a few other reasons why now is the best time to update your resume.
Beat the Automation Game
Automated HR systems in recent years has made having a perfect resume more necessary than ever before. Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) help recruiters by organizing and pre-screening resumes. They essentially look for keywords in each resume a company receives for a position and ranks it against the job posting, usually using a proprietary algorithm.
While ATS systems save recruiters a ton of time, they don’t do any favors for candidates. If your resume doesn’t have the right keywords, you’ll never even get your foot in the door, much less an interview. As such, it’s important to update your resume to make sure it reflects not only the jobs you want, but that it includes important industry keywords relevant to those jobs.
Stand Out Against Competition
Getting your resume past the algorithms is just the first step. Your resume also needs to stand out against the competition. That means a couple of things.
At the most basic, your resume needs to be spotless: no typos, no punctuation errors, no grammatical mistakes. But equally important, your resume needs to be relevant to the position you’re applying for, and not only in terms of the keywords. According to Indeed.com, hiring managers only spend six to seven seconds looking at a resume on average. That means your resume needs to capture their attention extremely fast.
Position Yourself for the Future
Resumes need to not only show where you’ve been professionally, but they need to reflect where you want to go in the future. What’s more, the job market always follows business trends, which means some newer industries will grow in the near future while others will shrink. For example, jobs in data science, artificial intelligence, and IT have been growing very fast over the past several years. But five to ten years ago, these industries were significantly smaller. If you haven’t been in the job market for a while, you definitely will want your resume to show how your skillsets can contribute to these burgeoning industries.
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