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resume graphicThe typical resume contains information about previous responsibilities, personal attributes and contact information. This traditional format is just not cutting the mustard these days for job seekers who are running into throngs of people all competing for the same job.

Make your resume action and results-oriented. Hiring managers do not want to see a rehash of past duties; they want to know about your successes. If your resume shows action, accomplishments and quantifiable results, you will capture and hold a manager’s attention. Here is how to do it. 

  1. Create a list of your tasks from previous jobs. If you already have an up to date resume, this should be an easy thing to do as your tasks are listed there for you. If they aren’t, take time to make a list of performed tasks for each of your previous jobs.
  2. Consider this list of tasks. Think about the accomplishments associated with each, and write those accomplishments down.
  3. Use these new details to create action/result statements for your resume.

For example, if your former position was as a CNA in a nursing home, one of the things that you were responsible for was taking care of residents. Your action-oriented tasks would be that of assisting residents with their ADLs, observing and reporting, etc. The associated successful result was doing it efficiently and in a timely manner. To quantify the result, you can specify the number residents you typically were responsible for during your shift and how long it took you to perform your tasks. If you received any recognition for your successes, all the better! 

Once you have put together your “numbers” then you are ready to compose your action/results-oriented statements. Using the above example it would be something like, “Delivered quality Restorative Care to 15 (on average) long term care residents and Rehabilitative Care to 4 (on average) short term care nursing home residents per eight hour shift.” 

In addition, including any special recognition you received on the job is a perfect way to demonstrate your success to a hiring authority, and if you have good attendance, claim it! The appropriate action/results-oriented statement in this regard would go something like this: “Have worked six consecutive months with perfect attendance.” 

Keep in mind that your resume is one of several from which a new hire will be chosen. To hiring managers, one resume looks like the rest after a while because most resumes focus only on responsibilities/tasks. Your resume will stand out if it is action and results-oriented. It is likely that the person doing the hiring is already familiar with the requirements of your former jobs anyway, unless you are changing fields. And if you are changing careers, results are results and success is success regardless of the industry. 

Remember that on the quantified job results will lend credence to your claims. This is one reason the action/results-oriented method of resume writing is so effective. Hiring authorities with any experience have learned that a candidate’s past success is often a reliable indicator of their future success. You can make any claim you want on your resume, but showing the results of your successes will bring you successful job seeking results of your own. 

Revising your resume using the action-oriented method may take a bit of time, but it will be time well spent. You will not only have a handful of action and results-oriented statements, you might also come away with a new appreciation of your own special expertise!

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