How to mold your Resume for Canadian Job Market?
Resume is your gateway pass to get a call from a potential employer. Believe me or not searching and applying for jobs can be the most tedious of all tasks, as someone rightly said it is not about quantity but quality. Hence it doesn’t matter to how many jobs you applied but what matters is to make your resume stand out in competition. Concentrate on details of job description, do some research about employer & the job and much more.
There are different styles of Canadian resume formats to follow.
Kiss: Keep it Short & Simple:
Most people have lengthy two-three-page resume. Try to keep resume one page for five-six years of experience held or maximum two pages for more than 6 years of your work experience. One-page resume is the new trend in Canada and highly recommended.
Customize resume for Each job application:
- General resumes do not work in today’s job market. Career experts recommend that you should personalize your resume for each job according to given job description, skills required and must haves for that position.
- And to make it possible, you should study the job description well, qualifying Criteria, must haves and carefully identify keyword/skills in the job details.
- Sometimes you just have to change few key words focusing on certain required skills and accomplishments. At other times you might need to reframe sentences to highlight specific skills and achievements.
- Most employers hardly read any resumes at initial stage, it’s just keywords and must haves that they look for, to qualify or reject it. Majority of companies do qualification through software, which are designed to specifically look for certain keywords and skills in your resume, and if not found you are already out of the race even though otherwise you might be the best candidate for the opportunity.
- I strongly do not recommend to apply for any job from your smartphone, because eventually you might end up not studying the description well or make changes to your resume accordingly. Always at least give minimum 20-30 minutes’ time to do one job application. Applying from mobile phone with a single click is easy but will definitely not help you get an interview call.
Include Volunteer Work:
Volunteer work always gives better impression of you to hiring manager and shows qualities like good time management, desire to give back to the community and eagerness to learn. It will also give you a chance to talk about the volunteer work and your interests during the interview.
Use Social Media:
I will advise to have a good professional LinkedIn profile. Your LinkedIn Profile should reflect your verified work experience. When I say verified, it means always try to get endorsements and recommendations from you colleagues and seniors. Many employers cross-check your resume with your LinkedIn profile and activity there. LinkedIn is also a good place to make connections, get referrals and information for a potential opportunity, try to engage with your connections for real life face to face information session or mentorship from seasoned leaders in the industry.
Formatting & Necessary Information:
Format is essential part of your resume. Choose better Resume format which is organized one, neat and clear but informative as well consistent as far as fonts and bullets and design is concern.
Use headings to organize the information in your resume. Common resume headings are:
- Contact information (Cell Number, Address, Email ID and LinkedIn profile link)
- Professional / career summary
- Work experience (mention city, country and month-year of started and ended working) + Volunteering work +Community Involvement
- Education / professional development (mention city, country and university name)
You may also like to add technical and other skills under heading of core competencies.
Before you finally forward or submit resume to the employer/agency, print it once and take a look, how does it really look? It should look interesting and different.
- Check for any spelling mistakes.
- Try doing Ctrl+F to see if certain words are used several times, you might be surprised to realize, it happens.
- Check format, headings and bullets styles are same throughout.
- Make sure all figures and dates are accurate and verifiable.
- Save your resume in PDF format also but sometimes employers prefer to have it in MS Word format.
- Also cross-check that there is sync between your resume and cover letter.
There are 2 common types of resumes:
1. Chronological Resume:
As the name suggests, chronological resume is time-based. You need to organize your past experiences chronologically viz. mention your most recent position first. This format of resume is best for candidates having considerable years of experience with multiple employers.
2. Functional Resume:
A functional resume is skills-based. It is organized by skills you gained in your previous work. Functional resumes are good for:
- Recent graduates
- Candidates who have longer gaps in employment.
- Candidates who are changing career
To conclude, resume screening for an employer is not a selection process but a rejection process, to reject all the candidates who did not take the effort to highlight how they are most suitable for the job. So, take up the challenge, take charge of your own future!
Please ask any questions or doubts you have, in the comments section below.
Happy resume Making and Job Hunting !