Thursday, March 7, 2013

How to Format a Career Changer's Resume

When it comes to crafting a career changer's resume, there are two things to keep in mind:
  • Keep it down to one page, so omit any irrelevant details. Your client may have been proficient in computer applications, but if he won't be spending much time with software in his new career, it's useless to cite all the responsibilities he's assumed by using technology.
  • Select a maximum of three of your client's transferable skills and make sure to highlight them. To illustrate, if he wrote and proofread memos  and collection letters in his previous job but will now handle customer queries and complaints on a face-to-face basis, you can still claim "excellent communication skills" as one of his transferable skills.

Now, you may be thinking, "Would a functional resume be the best format, or chronological?"

The best resume is a combination of both, especially if your client showed competence in specific tasks or duties that can be carried over in his new career, and if he took the necessary time to take classes or additional courses in order to be retrained.

After citing a Career Objective, provide any recent work experience that your client has in which he's shown considerable competency, but whose nature is similar to the responsibilities he's going to face in his new career. 

To boost his credentials further, write down the newly acquired skills that he has garnered from his period of retraining. Start with the most recent, say, any classes or seminars he's taken within six to eighteen months prior to his consultation with you.

In my next article, I'll talk about internships and working as a volunteer.

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