Resume Writing How-To-Guide for Mid-Level Professionals

Young Network Engineer

The biggest conundrum facing applicants at this level is having to condense years’ worth of experience, skills, and qualifications, without negating key aspects or skills that might take them into the next level of their career. This is why it is imperative for the mid-level professional to understand their skills and know exactly how to summarise them to best showcase their capabilities for that specific role.

Paul (* not his real name),  is well into his working career as an IT Engineer (he’s at least seven years in).  He works for one of 0the leading JSE listed IT companies.  The remote and hybrid working models required in 2020, have kept him and his team on the hop!  His company is expanding as a result, but Paul is beginning to feel that he’d like to achieve more in his career.  Paul is considering a transition from specialist to management role.  The current version of his resumé only speaks to his MCSE, CCNA, MCP and Active Directory experience.  It does not mention anything about his ability to lead a team of 8 technicians, or of his dedicated mentorship of a large group of IT Interns, whose activities he plans out and assesses on a daily basis.

Ponder this for a moment…

  • The future is happening FAST!
  • Competition amongst applicants is higher than ever.
  • Face to face interviews are virtually a thing of the past.
  • Resumé length does not denote ability or seniority. The appropriate length of the document is dependent on where you are in your career, but the norm in 2021 is one page for entry-level applicants with upto 4 years of working experience.
  • There is NO size fits all C.V. You MUST try to read the job advert properly before sending off your resumé, or the Applicant Tracking System that houses your application before matching it to a job, can’t digest the contents and therefore won’t shortlist your profile for review.
  • Providing a Job Title for the position you are applying for, on your resumé, as well as in the Subject Line for your email, gives the reader context and prompts them towards the next step in evaluating to your profile. Omitting this leaves the recruiters and hiring managers frustrated and they may skip right over it.
  • Your resumé should always be in MS Word or PDF format.  A basic MS Word format allows for quick and easy editing.  Google Docs is a no-no.

The Recruiter or Hiring Manager will have three considerations in mind when reviewing your resumé: What you have achieved recently, how well you did it, and whether what you accomplished applies to them?

Consider these 5 key guidelines for resumé writing:

  1. Read the job advert  carefully and compare the CV to the actual job description of the role.  Ensure that the resumé highlights the key requirements as stipulated in the job description.
  2. For technical roles such as those in the IT or Engineering sectors, it is important  to list (and rank) these technical capabilities.
  3. Quantify, quantify, quantify. Ensure that you quantify the amount of experience you have or the complement of staff that you manage. This information assists the Recruiter or Hiring Manager in identifying your level of experience and whether or not your profile fits the organisational structure.
  4. Add a comprehensive list of notable achievements and accolades, or strategies that you spearheaded, to your resumé in order to show Recruiters and Hiring Managers what you have previously achieved, and where you could add value to the organisation.
  5. Ensure that keywords are listed not only in your Executive Summary, but also in a list of key competency skills. Listing keywords is a great way to ensure your resumé will make it passed the algorithm of ATS systems which assist your Recruiter or Hiring Manager to identify the required skills for the role. These include your position, field, industry, soft skills, etc.  A bad idea, however, is to include so many keywords in your resumé if you don’t have the accomplishments (with evidence) to back them up.

Hire Power has structured a package that we believe will help mid-level professionals navigate the Candidate Journey more seamlessly.  Feel free to contact me for more details.

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