SAGE ADVICE FOR RESUMES, INTERVIEWING, AND MORE!
- By bruce w clagg
Should I Keep My Resume Up-to-Date? How?
The quick answer is “yes,” but the answer to “how” is a bit more involved.
Let’s assume that your resume is not just current, but a marketing masterpiece when you accepted your new position. It is current as of today, right?
Now, you begin your new job. Congratulations!
After a beer, or soda with some of your new teammates the real work begins. Utilizing an Excel spreadsheet, make a column (at the top) for every metric that would be important to your boss and possibly to you. Start with items such as (and obviously the metrics will differ depending upon what your job title and duties are): Revenue, Expenses, Headcount, Employee Turnover, $/Sales Rep, % of Quota, et al. You can take an Excel spreadsheet from east to west without running out of room! LOL!
Find and enter the numbers and percentages the day, week, month that you started the position. Be certain that they are accurate and perhaps footnote (at the bottom) from what source these figures came. At the end of every quarter (noted on the far-left side) e.g. Q-4, 2015, enter the actual numbers and percentages and anything else that your boss could rate you on, or about which you care. If there was a special recognition, or award, make a note of it during that quarter, e.g. District of the Month Award (NOV, 2015).
As the quarters come and go, take a strong look at how your numbers/percentages are bettering, or worsening. HEADS-UP! Perhaps there is something requiring your attention before someone upstairs sees it. Even so, you’ve noticed it and you’re taking corrective action. Proactive, huh? Attention to detail, huh? Saving yourself before you get called onto the carpet, huh?
After six months open your shiny, but now somewhat out of date, resume and above your last employer, enter the name of your new company; City/State where you are based, and 2015 – Present. Be sure that the layout/format is identical to that of your former employer below, e.g. bolding, spacing, italics, etc. Now, list your achievements based upon those within your Excel spreadsheet, e.g. “Dramatically increased revenue by 28% in the first six months by designing and implementing a well-planned Customer Satisfaction Program.” Obviously, just the “good stuff!”
If the former employer at the very end of your resume is further back than 15 years and/or those skills and achievements are no longer relevant due to technological changes, market shifts, etc., then drop the last employer from the resume completely.
A few things can happen here. (A) Your Annual Performance Review. Your boss DOES NOT
keep track of all of these metrics and pats you on the head, kicks you in the *** a little and announces your 2.4% salary raise. You can then show him your Excel spreadsheet on exactly how things were when you first sat in that chair and how things are today. “John, have I led significant improvements within my department/group/team? Clearly, all income numbers were improved an average of 8.6%, expenses were reduced by 4.9% and there was no employee turnover, saving even more money. Don’t you believe THAT is worth more than 2.4%?” (S)he has a budget for raises from zero to ?, but the aggregate must be no more than X%, and (s)he spreads the raises around. No one jumps up, well on very rare occasions, and says “…this raise is terrible,” although they surely think so. My response to one employee that wanted a 10% raise was “…are you doing 10% more for this region than this time last year?” His glazed look proved that he didn’t keep track of the measurable items within his control and, therefore, had no response. I didn’t see it. Perhaps he could have convinced me? Get it? You don’t necessarily earn a raise just by showing up.
(B) There is a higher level, or perhaps more exciting position that opens. Maybe a merger is forthcoming with another company. Believe me, you’ll need an up-to-date resume tomorrow. YIKES! No problem; follow my instructions above, if you haven’t already, and within an hour you have it….a current, marketing masterpiece!
(C) After three to five years, assess your position, your company, and your industry to see if it’s time to move on and move up even if your career there has progressing. You are always more marketable while you are employed! You have a current resume, email me for a great cover letter (LOL!), and test the waters. YOU WILL SELDOM GET A BIGGER PROMOTION WITH BETTER MONEY UNLESS YOU CHANGE COMPANIES! (A personal observation) That said, too many changes label you as a “job-hopper” and why waste the time, effort, and training on someone that has a track record of changing companies every time the wind blows? “Candy, send in the next candidate, please.”
So-o-o, are you getting my point. Keep excellent records (no one else will) and keep that resume current. You never know when you’ll need it, but at some point you definitely will! Good luck!!
Hello! I'm Bruce Clagg,
Advanced Career Solutions
Advanced Career Solutions (ACS) is a professional resume writing services firm also providing unique, job interview training, LinkedIn Profile rebuilding, career counseling & coaching from the ONLY multi-certified professional* in Texas. - Bruce Clagg, Rapid Employment & Career Management Coach
*The four Certifications are noted within.