If you’re asking this question you’re thinking about skill certification, and education in general, incorrectly. Certifications and college degrees do not “do something” for you on their own. Your professional education is just one aspect of your overall portfolio, and you should be working towards improving all aspects regularly.
When an HR professional or hiring manager looks at your resumè, they are looking for very specific things. Your resumè must anticipate what the employer is looking for and address it. In addition to the hiring manager, you must also consider applicant tracking system — or ATS. This software is designed to scan thousands of resumes and present just a handfull for an HR manager to review. This type of software is critical for large companies because the receive hundreds of applicants for each job posting.
Every job is different, but here are some items that HR managers typically look at.
The first thing employers want to know is if you’re qualified for the job task they are hiring for. After all, there’s no sense in interviewing someone if they can’t reasonably perform the tasks of the job. Qualification review is usually broken down into two areas:
If you make it past the initial qualification review, the hiring manager will then look to see if you fit within the organization. What does this mean? It varies for every company, but they’ll look to see if your personality and work ethic match the company culture. This is why employers ask questions like “Where do you see yourself in 5 years?” and “Tell me about your last job.” What they are really trying to determine is how you’ll act and perform once employed by them. Job-fit is a little harder to prepare for because every organization is different. Some of the things companies look at include:
Did you submit the same resumé to 25 different companies? Don’t be surprised when you don’t receive a callback. Employers want to know you took the time to understand the job you’re applying for and are interested in the position. These means going through the job listing and addressing the specific job requirements. Use the same wording from the job posting on your resumè because those are the exact skills the company is looking for. Think of the job posting as a roadmap.
A resume with errors or inconsistencies can quickly land in the rejection pile. Proofread your resume carefully for grammatical and spelling errors. Ensure that dates, job titles, and other information are accurate and consistent.
Attention to detail is a vital aspect of crafting an effective resume that HR managers are sure to notice. While it might seem like a minor point, it can make a significant difference in how your application is perceived. Here’s an in-depth look at why attention to detail matters on your resume:
Attention to detail is integral to creating a resume that HR managers will notice and appreciate. By presenting a polished, error-free document, you convey professionalism and credibility and increase your chances of moving forward in the hiring process. It’s a small investment that can yield significant rewards in your job search.
This is an important element that many people often overlook. How you act outside of work may be just as important as how you carry yourself in the office. Many managers now look at your social media profile as part of the hiring process. They will also look to see if you volunteer or do extracurricular activities outside of work. This all comes back to the “fit” we discussed earlier.
This may not seem fair, but the reality is that employers now know more about our personal lives than ever before. Social media has allowed us to be closer to friends and family, but also opened a window for employers to see in.
Certifications and college degrees can only do something for you if you’re actively improving your complete employment portfolio. The people who have the best understanding of this will be the most successful when it comes to finding new opportunities.