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If you’ve read any of my other articles, you’ll realize that I really preach how important a resume is to you and your career, so it’s no surprise that I suggest updating your resume multiple times throughout the course of a job, and ideally every time you get that new promotion!
First thing’s first, you’ll need to know a few things about how, when, and if you’ll be updating your resume, so here are some great tips to help you get that sorted out.
Update your resume frequently
Many times, folks will only update their resume when they lose their job, and are in desperate need of a new one. This rush can lead to spelling and specific errors, like wrong information or simple mistakes that stand out, which in turn effects the way you look to an interviewer.
So the appropriate answer to that question is probably a bit simpler. You’ll want to update your resume when any large change occurs in your career. That doesn’t mean a desk change, or upgraded company car, but when you’ve received an award or recognition for something you’ve achieved, a significant raise or promotion, or a change in your job if it’s been dissolved or encompassed by something else.
How do I update it correctly?
The easiest way to update it without putting yourself in a bind is to make a copy of your resume each time you change it, and put a date in the file name so you can keep a chronological order of the edits over the course of your professional career.
Next, you’re going to want to try and make sure that all most recent information is listed at the top of each area. So if your post recent award for employee of the month is the last notable item in your personal history area, then that’s on top. Keep things going for each area, but make sure to remove any information that has become too old or irrelevant to the position you have now.
What about online resumes like LinkedIn?
In a perfect world, you’d be updating your LinkedIn profile and information when you update your resume, as in today’s world LinkedIn can help you get a job almost as much as a great resume can. But unfortunately updating your resume is time consuming, and adding in a website to the mix may not be the best for you. I recommend updating your LinkedIn profile each BIG change in your professional career, and not everything you’d update your resume for.
Bringing it all together
As you grow in your professional career, so will your resume. This means you need to make sure you have multiple versions of it, long and short, ready to be provided to the employer in the format that fits them best. Industry also makes a difference in how your resume is built and it’s length, because formatting also comes into play when your industry requires something in a specific format.
The goal here is to make sure your resume is always updated, always ready in the right format for whatever employer you approach, and be able to feel confident in your resume when that inevitable day comes and you’re looking for that new job.
Being safe with your professional life and career, along with staying prepared will be the most fruitful choices you can make in today’s world.
I really hope my tips have helped you decide the best times and reasons to update your resume, and make it easy on yourself by setting a yearly calendar event, or even one every 6 months! Here’s to your success!
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