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Split personality

Most people have had varied careers. The focus may have shifted slightly (for example a finance manager moving from the private sector to a not-for-profit) or dramatically (such as a photographer moving into an accounts role).

Having multiple hats will obviously result multiple versions of your resume. However, many of my clients have several completely different resumes depending on the type of role they are applying for.

It doesn't have to be this way.

While I'm a huge advocate of tailoring a resume for a job, I don't believe that you need completely different resumes for different kinds of jobs. This is because it's fairly likely that most of the skills you use in one job will be also handy in the other.

In fact, most jobs are looking for the same key selection criteria - perhaps just worded in a different way.

99% of the resumes that I write (and I write resumes tailored for a particular job) include the following skills as a criteria (or variations on the theme):

  • Communication (written and verbal)

  • Stakeholder engagement or Interpersonal

  • Organisational or Time management or Project management or Administration

So once you have a resume that lists all of your (transferable) skills, it's easy to tailor your resume by dragging and dropping your skills into the most appropriate order. Yes, you'll probably need to add in a job-specific criteria or two, but you can probably leave your other skills on there as well. (For example, a photographer applying for bookkeeping roles could leave photography on their skills list, but it would be the bottom of the list with a less detailed explanation.)

Then all you need to do is amend your profile and VOILA! You have a new version of your resume.

If your career history is quite disparate, you might also want to think about separating your jobs into categories rather than in having them in chronological order. For example, a recent client had a mix of teaching and office administration roles, which we separated into different sections for clarity. The basic information was all still there, just in a different order tailored for whatever type of role she was applying.

So think about how you can amalgamate your resumes if you have multiple, then just tailor based on the role.


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