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4 Ways to Sell Yourself in Your Resume  
11/1/2011 3:36:04 PM

By Michelle Wong, BioSpace.com

As you already know, hiring managers don’t have time to read through hundreds or even thousands of the resumes that are floating in cyberspace. According to the Rockport Institute, “only one interview is granted for every 200 resumes received by the average employer.” The average time you have to persuade a typical hiring manager to read your resume further is 10 to 20 seconds. That doesn’t allow much time to market yourself does it?

Throughout your job search, use your resume as a way to market yourself. With your resume, you are essentially selling yourself as a product with the goal of scoring an interview. We tend to buy products that are more advertised than the ones that aren’t and the products that we select aren’t always the best products on the market. The same goes for your resume, if you can advertise yourself effectively, you may have a better chance of getting a response than someone who has better credentials. Use your resume as an advertisement that will entice the reader to read further. For example, if you read an ad and it doesn’t catch your eye or spark any interest, you will be reluctant to read on or learn more about it. As a result, you will most likely toss the ad in the trash because the product doesn’t benefit you or your needs. Similarly, if the employer doesn’t like what he or she sees on your resume and doesn’t feel that what you have to offer them matches the needs of their company, it most likely will go in the rejection pile hindering your chances of getting an interview.

Here are 4 tips on how to write a resume that will help increase your marketability:

1. Create a captivating job target.
Since most of us read from top to bottom, one of the first things a hiring manager will most likely read is the job target or what is known as a personal statement. An example of a personal statement could be something like, “Award- winning Scientist with 15 years of experience in Neurobiology and Biochemistry Research.” According to career expert, Anish Majumdar, “Starting with a succinct statement of what you’d like to get out of a position, as well as what attributes you can bring to the table, can really help you stand out from the competition.” In addition, Majumdar also recommends keeping a personal statement brief and targeted towards the types of jobs you are seeking.

2. Focus on the Employer’s Needs, Not Yours.
Focus your attention on what you can do for the company, not what they can do for you. What is the company looking for? Who would be the perfect candidate? What would set you apart from any other candidate? How do your skills match those of the company? Incorporate these thoughts and ideas into your resume.

3. Add testimonials.
To boost your potential as a candidate, add testimonials of two or three people who can vouch for you and include them in your resume. By adding testimonials, your resume will stand out more than a list of references with just names and contact information. If you are uncomfortable with adding testimonials and prefer to use only references, remember to always gather your references beforehand and ask them for their permission when you are ready to send out your resume.

4. Include a Blog.
If you happen to have an industry-related blog site, include this as part of your resume. It will show the employer that you are dedicated to your field, are up to date with current information, and that you spend extra time away from your daily life to maintain your blog. Plus it will provide concrete evidence of your knowledge, skills, and abilities.

Producing a quality and marketable resume may take some time, but the more time you spend perfecting your resume, the better chances you have for potentially landing an interview.

About the Author

Michelle Wong researches and writes about job search strategy, career management, hiring trends and workplace issues for BioSpace.com.

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