Veteran Resume Makeover: Get a Job Recruiter's Attention

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When it comes to the challenges of job hunting, simply getting your resume before a hiring manager can be an obstacle. Too few job seekers, however, are adept at making their experience and talents stand out on the page.

One example is the resume of Alex Doe (a pseudonym), below. He leads with a "summary of qualifications," but it lacks detail and doesn't grab the reader's eye. That's also true of his work experience, says Justin Nichols, associate of veteran programs at Hire Heroes USA, a nonprofit employment-services organization.

In improving Doe's resume, Nichols begins the new document with a Professional Summary that highlights keywords, such as a job title -- Intelligence Analyst, which Doe wants recruiters to notice, since it directly relates to the kind of job he wants. Leading with a professional summary, says Nichols, tells a hiring manager precisely what you've accomplished.

That may include your educational achievements, but only if they are related to the position you're seeking, he says. Additional details about education, trainings, certifications and awards should be moved to the bottom of the document.

Another way to catch the resume viewer's eye is to "bullet" responsibilities and list them in order of importance as they relate to your job. That instantly gives the reader a quick snapshot of what it is you are adept at.

Alex Doe's "before" resume is pictured below. Click here to see what his resume looks like after the transformation.


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