When was the last time you updated your resume? If it has been awhile, there are probably some key engagements, skills and achievements that are missing from your resume. As an IT contractor, your resume needs to be continually updated to reflect your unique value proposition in a way that makes you stand out and more successfully land engagements that enhance your career trajectory.
In this article, we’ll cover 8 tips to help you create a stand-out resume that tells employers you’re right for the role.
Use key words to highlight essential skills
Hiring managers want to know that contractors are problem solvers, have entrepreneurial drive and possess leadership abilities. That’s why it is important to include key words in your resume describing your achievements in these areas.
Key words associated with problem solving include developed, designed and performed. Entrepreneurial drive can be described with words such as started, created and grew. Words like led, organized and managed can be used to describe leadership abilities. Make sure the key words you use are strong action verbs that emphasize your achievements.
A well-crafted resume is concise. Keep your resume to one page - two at the absolute most. Detail your past IT roles and projects using bullet points instead of long paragraphs to ensure key points grab the attention of hiring managers.
Keeping your resume concise also allows for the strategic use of white space which can help easily guide a hiring manager’s eye through each section of your resume.
Proofread and edit your Resume
Make sure you proofread and edit your resume before uploading it to your Abra profile. Check for spelling and grammatical errors and look for formatting inconsistencies. Ask a family member or friend to read through your resume. They can be another set of eyes to catch any errors and inconsistencies you might have overlooked.
Clearly list experience with technology and tools
To keep tech hiring managers interested, be sure to list the tools and technology you have experience with at the top of your resume.
As you apply for positions, look at the description of the role to make sure to list experience with any security tools, software programs, programming languages, databases, operating systems, and/or network configurations relevant to each engagement.
Emphasize technical skills and accomplishments
Hiring managers want to know the basics of your contracting experience – projects you completed, what you did and duration of each project, but they also want to know how you used technical skills and what you achieved in each project.
Be sure to highlight the skills you learned at each of those engagements and list the tech stack beside each role or project. This helps hiring managers understand the scope of your technical ability and reinforces that you have the tech skills and experience they need.
Including data points throughout descriptions of your contractor experience adds context to your achievements. Performance data such as streamlining a process which saved a company x amount over y months paints a more compelling picture of the value add you can bring to an organization.
Be sure that any data points you include in your resume are verifiable.
Include relevant certifications
Be sure to include relevant certifications, workshops and courses that help validate your technical skills and abilities in your resume. Doing this can boost your credibility with potential clients, showing that you are dedicated to your craft and motivated to learn more.
Tailor your resume to the position you want
Last, but certainly not least, make sure to tailor your resume to the position you want. Put the experience and skills most relevant to the position at the top of the resume so hiring managers can easily find it. Include key words found in the job posting in your resume.
Doing this will help hiring managers more easily see why you are a fit for their position.
Get your resume into the right hands
While an effective resume is critical, you also need that resume in the right hands, for the right opportunities - and that's where we come in.
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