When you peruse your completed resume in advance of applying for a job, you might enjoy focusing on the parts of the document that feel particularly strong. What you should also be doing, however, is identifying where your resume falls short. This is important because any hiring manager looking at the document will likely be doing so, too — and if you're able to identify these weaknesses, you can work to correct them before you apply. Here are three potential weaknesses and how you can overcome them:
A Lack Of References
A lack of references on your resume can be a weak area. Perhaps you don't have a lengthy work history, or maybe you left your last job on bad terms — either scenario can make it difficult for you to collect references. A resume with a short references section or no references at all won't work in your favor, so it's time to start brainstorming who you can turn to for help. Think about people who would speak highly of you, and then consider how you can tie such individuals into your resume. For example, if you babysit your neighbor's children after school, the neighbor could be a valuable character reference.
No Activities Outside Of Work
While it's true that hiring managers will focus on your employment history, many manager want to hire people who have well-rounded lives. If you don't list any activities outside of work, it could potentially be a sign that you're a workaholic — and this might initially be good, but it could also lead to you getting burned out. The good news is that you can populate this section in a number of different ways. Think of one or two charities in your community and begin to volunteer; even if you volunteer an hour a week, you can list this work on your resume. Similarly, helping with your children's sports teams as a coach can be useful to include.
If you're concerned that your resume's education section won't be as valuable as those who may also be applying for the job, it's time to head back to the classroom. This doesn't mean that you necessarily need to return to college, but you should look for some applicable certificate courses or even training workshops that you can take in person or online to bolster this section. The added bonus will be that when you include these entries, hiring managers will see that they're dated recently. This shows that you're eager to continue to learn.
Contact a company like JWC Professional Resume Services for more information and assistance.