Career Expert Offers Speedy Strategies for Resume Transformations

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In today's fast-paced job market an up-to-date resume is essential. In her recently-released book, author Louise Kursmark guides readers through a 30-minute process for quickly and efficiently transforming their resumes.

Most people don't give their resume a second thought until they're unemployed or have just come across a great job opportunity. In times like these, when an outstanding resume is needed the most, most job seekers' resumes are too outdated to make an impact on hiring managers and recruiters.

"In today's fast-paced economy, you can't use a bland, "same-old" resume and expect to get results. In a typical application scenario, you are competing against hundreds, if not thousands, of other job seekers. To distinguish you from the crowd, your resume must make your strongest 'selling points' instantly evident to employers and recruiters--not to mention automated resume scanners," says professional resume writer Louise Kursmark in her upcoming book 30-Minute Resume Makeover.

Contrary to what many job seekers believe, producing such a resume does not require a great deal of time. If job seekers have 30 minutes to spare, they have enough time to quickly and effectively update their resume to act on sudden job opportunities. In her book, Kursmark offers the following five resume-makeover strategies:

Fashion a Strong Framework.
Consider which resume structure will make it easy to read and best communicates your key value. Two factors that play a significant role in this step are organization and design. No matter what you've been told, or how you've structured your resume in the past, take a fresh look at these two factors to be sure you're making smart choices for your current circumstances.

Start with a Superlative Summary.
The first section of your resume can be called the Summary, Profile, Introduction, Overview, Qualifications Brief, or other title. It might have no title at all and simply begin with a headline that states your professional expertise. Regardless of what you call it, this section is a critical positioning piece that lets you establish, clearly and up front, who you are and your most important qualifications.

Emphasize Experience and Accomplishments.
Many people make the mistake of placing too much emphasis on their job descriptions. In reality, employers don't care much about job descriptions. What they care about is what you have done while holding that job. Your resume should showcase the unique contributions you have made to your past employers, teammates and projects.

Enhance with Education and "Extras."
After the intensive work you've done to describe your experience and accomplishments, it's time to take a breather. Fortunately, the Education and "Extras" sections of your resume are typically the fastest and easiest to write. Consider including information, such as: proficiency in multiple languages, technology skills and proficiencies, publications you've written, presentations and public speaking experiences, and professional affiliations.

Proofread and Polish to Perfection.
No matter how perfect you think your resume may be, it probably still needs trimmed, edited, shaped, and polished to achieve a winning result. Try stepping away from the resume and coming back to it at a later time. When you return, you'll look at your draft with fresh eyes and be able to be more accurate and more objective in correcting and tweaking it.

30-Minute Resume Makeover is available at all major bookstores and from the publisher ( or 1.800.648.JIST). To speak with Louise Kursmark, contact Natalie Ostrom.

JIST, America's Career Publisher, is a division of EMC/Paradigm Publishing and is the leading publisher of job search, career, occupational information, life skills and character education books, workbooks, assessments, videos and software.


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Natalie Ostrom
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