A lot of people think they don't need to tailor their resume because they don't have the right skills or they don't have a solid work background.
The reality is that employers are not looking for a perfect resume. They're looking for a person that's a good fit for their business.
A job ad is a wish list
When a business advertises a job, they are looking for someone with the skills to do a job. They have a wish list of what they would like the new team member to have so they can do the job. They write this wish list into the job ad. This is what you should use to tailor your resume.
Your resume is not about you
A resume should not be just about you. It's about what you can do for the hiring employer, not just show your skills and experience.
Take a look at the job ad for a retail sales assistant. This shop in Braidwood wants someone to help them with customer service. Their wish list is clear.
Now here's a resume that I created based on my past experience when I lived in Taree. You'll see there's some skills that relate to the job, but they're not an exact match. I can tailor this resume using my existing skills so they better match the wish list outlined in the job ad.
A better resume tailored for the job ad
Now take a look at the resume that I have tailored for the job ad. I have used the same key words to update the resume. This will catch the employer's eye and show that I am a good fit for the business.
The content of the resume is the same, I have just written it to better suit what the business needs. I have highlighted the changes in yellow so you can see the difference.
My experience hasn't changed at all, it's just presented in a way that appeals to the employer.
If you don't have the exact work experience to match the employer's wish list, see if there's other things you do that could apply.
It's also a good idea to practice looking at job ads and spotting what an employer is looking for. You'll soon be able to quickly adjust your resume for every job you apply for.
I've love hear how you go in the comments below - and if you want to copy and paste bits of job ads below - we can help identify the keywords in the ad so you can tailor your resume.
Images: iStock, supplied by author