With the cost of living rising we've all been analysing our budgets to try and find ways to cut expenses. We've cut down on groceries, shopped around for better energy and petrol prices, and agonised over which streaming service to remove this month.
But what if you flipped this and instead tried to increase your income? And what if I told you a simple document could help you do this?
The humble resume (or curriculum vitae/CV) is a much overlooked document. And contrary to rumour, the resume is not dead!
Putting a bit of time and effort into improving your resume could help you to earn more money by securing a new role at a higher level. This could be an internal promotion, a more senior external role, or by supporting your request for a pay rise.
So how do you ensure your resume will win you more money?
1: Remember a resume is a sales document.
Most people have a resume that lists their contact details and then has a big long list of job responsibilities. It does absolutely nothing to sell them to the employer.
In order to get to the job interview stage your resume needs to clearly sell your unique key skills or strengths as well as your key career achievements to the recruiter or employer.
To make sure your resume does this you need a 'summary' front page - it's essentially your sales page. Your resume front page should include:
Your name and contact details (mobile, email, LinkedIn URL - put this in the header)
A professional profile
A skills/strengths summary
A few key achievements from across your career
A career summary or snapshot (list of jobs and years)
The rest of your resume will then cover the more traditional resume sections such as Career History, Education, and Volunteer work.
2: Get clear on your top unique selling points
Writing a professional profile that really encapsulates who you are and what you bring to an organisation is key to securing a new role.
A professional profile is similar to your 'elevator pitch', which is a 30 second spiel about who you are and what you do. Your profile can also be used on LinkedIn in the About section.
A professional profile should clearly explain who you are (in terms of job title/s and your experience) then weave together your top unique selling points.
Not sure what your unique selling points are? Think about your top skills, then how you use those skills to help the organisation.
For example, your top skill might be leadership, but your top unique selling point is being a transparent and empathic leader who skillfully leads organisations through change.
You might want to brainstorm this will a trusted friend or colleague - sometimes an external perspective can be enlightening! And don't forget to also brainstorm adjectives to describe you, then weave these into your profile to add your personality.
3: Sell your achievements
To sell yourself and showcase your skills you need to include lots of career achievements on your resume.
For each job entry in the Career History section try to include at least 2-3 achievements. People are much more likely to read and be impressed by achievements than a boring list of job responsibilities. Then pick the most impressive and relevant for the Key Achievements section on your front 'summary' page.
Now, most people dislike talking about their achievements and many will say they don't have any!
However, if you do some brainstorming (again, it might help to do this with a colleague) you are bound to find some. Perhaps you fixed a process to make it more efficient? Led a high profile project? Improved the team culture? Mentored a new staff member?
Once your new resume is complete you'll be able to articulate your skills, unique selling points and achievements - leading to increased career confidence and hopefully a bigger pay packet! No more agonising over grocery bills and petrol prices.
Need help getting your resume up to a quality that will win you that higher paying role? The Not Just a Resume Template program gives you all the tools and information you need to do just that.