Common knowledge would suggest the “best” candidate always gets the job. Unfortunately, the reality is quite different. As far as engineering recruiters are concerned, job candidates are only as good as their résumés!
They’re not trying to be unfair. It’s just that nobody is psychic. How can recruiters know a specific engineering candidate is great unless the case is effectively laid out in résumé form?
Here Are Some Ways Applicants Can Ensure Their Résumés Get Noticed by Engineering Recruiters!
Tell a Story to Engineering Recruiters
Many job seekers perceive résumés as documents that simply list their educational history, job experience, and skillsets. However, the real goal of a résumé is to “tell a story.” While the aforementioned information is necessary, it’s merely used to support an overall narrative.
Every résumé should have a clearly listed “objective” at the top of the page that is job-opportunity specific. This objective will naturally follow from the career trajectory reflected in the rest of the document. So, it’s not just an aspiration, but rather the natural next step as supported by the information that follows.
Résumés should then present the candidate’s career trajectory in reverse order, starting from their most recent role and working backward in time. The same holds true for education, which is usually included in a section toward the bottom of the document.
Support with Examples
Résumés that support their “story” with a section for “Accomplishments” help bring the document to life. Many candidates will actually include this portion immediately following the “Objective,” and then list their work history afterward. Achievements should address the questions asked in any good story: “why,” “how,” “conclusion,” etc.
For example, a candidate who wants engineering recruiters to perceive them as creative and solution-oriented may list any prior role as a team lead in an R&D project. In doing so, they paint a picture by highlighting the value proposition to a company.
Make It Applicable
It’s important for engineering candidates to remember that the résumé’s “story” must also be relevant to the position. Job seekers should never use a “one-size-fits-all” résumé but should instead have a couple of customized versions for specific opportunities.
For example, an engineering candidate applying for a management role may spend considerable time emphasizing their leadership experience. Conversely, applicants for highly technical, niche opportunities should stay hyper-focused on their expertise within that specific function.
Once an engineering candidate has figured out their “story” and how to apply it to a specific job opening, they can then add substance by listing their work history, educational background, and skillsets. Advanced degrees should always be cited, but it’s even appropriate to include high school achievements if space accommodates.
Jobseekers often fail to grasp the importance of listing “intangible” attributes, like leadership and communication skills, within their résumés. But, that’s a grave mistake. One possible title for this portion of the résumé is, “Other Skills & Talents.” If a dozen résumés show similar job histories and education, “soft skills” can prove a critical distinction!
Ultimately, engineering recruiters review many résumés when vetting job seekers. They’re simply doing their jobs and must rely on systems to decide which candidates move forward in the process. But, applicants can also do their part to ensure they get preferred status. Having a “story-telling” résumé is the best way to get that interview!
If you’re seeking a new career, be sure to consult with the country’s best manufacturing and engineering recruiting agency today!
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