It’s never too late or too early to spruce up your resume, just in case. Beyond refreshing your recommendations and cleaning up the formatting, what can you do to make your resume the strongest it can possibly be?
Job skills are a crucial part of your resume and an area that many people neglect or overlook. If you already have a job, you may think that fact is evidence enough of your skills. The truth is that picking up new job skills shows that you’re engaged not just in doing your job, but doing your job better. There are plenty of free tools online to acquire new job skills, and your current job (if you have one) may also have options available, so ask around. You can acquire new job skills with everything from data center training to video production.
If you’re interested in education, you can also take it a step beyond and go back to school. Plenty of graduate programs and even undergraduate programs cater to those with full time employment. Many companies even offer financial assistance to employees that are looking to get a new degree. In certain situations, even a few class credits can make a difference. Foreign language proficiency, for example, can give your resume an edge over other applications.
Take the Initiative
Taking initiative at work may seem like a no brainer. Of course you should, everyone should, shouldn’t they? You might not think of that as resume building, but it is. If you take the lead on an important and successful project at work, that is absolutely something that should find a place on your resume. What are your proudest accomplishments? When were you the hero at your office?
Mix and Mingle
Not all resumes require references anymore, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t shop around looking for them. Make connections in your company and in your industry. Even if you’re not including references on your resume, remember the old adage: it’s not what you know, it’s who you know.
If you’re already looking for a new job, it’s not too late to add new skills to your resume. If you’re not currently looking for a new job, it isn’t a bad idea to be prepared. Even if you love your current job and have no desire to change, a resume provides a stark irrefutable outline of your strengths, which can be useful information to have on hand when you’re angling for a raise or a promotion.