How to Keep Your Resume Concise and Relevant
When applying for accounting jobs, keeping your accounting resume short and sweet will make it easier to read for the hiring manager. It also makes it easier to compose and update for you! Having a well-structured, concise resume helps you look more organized, and it saves you time when applying for accounting jobs.
While most resume gurus advise that a one-page resume should be your aim, we don’t go along with this. How can a candidate with 20 years of experience in accounting put all this down in a single page?
This said, you must keep your resume as brief as possible. If you have only had a couple of jobs in accounting, a single page should suffice. But don’t be scared to use more if you have had multiple roles during a longer career.
The secret to a composing an effective resume is to make it scannable, including all the information the hiring manager needs and no more. Here’s how to do this.
How to Keep Your Resume Short
Here are the considerations you should be making when composing your resume. Sticking to these points will help you get yourself across without overwhelming the resume reviewer.
Structure Your Resume for the Best Results
Keep in mind that there is no one-size-fits-all resume template that will work for everyone. Since you are competing with literally hundreds of other people who have similar qualifications, you need to make sure your resume is structured in a way that will show your strengths and make an employer want to call you for an interview.
The first thing to consider when making your resume is your name. Why? Because it’s the first thing that potential employers will see, and it’s important that it stands out.
The second consideration is your work history, which should be in reverse chronological order with the most recently held position listed first.
The third thing to think about when crafting your resume is what skills you have and what you want them to know about you based on those skills. Consider highlighting certifications, licenses, and special skills that can make you stand out from other applicants.
Include Specific Information and Relevant Background Details
It is important that your resume includes specific information. This will help the employer or recruiter get a better understanding of what you can do for them. It is also important to include relevant background details to show you are aware and confident in your abilities.
Only include information that is relevant to the position you are applying for. You don’t need to explain what duties you undertook as a part-time server when you were at college!
Include a List of Soft Skills and Transferable Skills
You should also list any soft skills you possess. Soft skills are abilities such as being able to work with a team, managing time, and being able to work on several tasks at once. These are important because they show how well you can do in the hiring company’s workplace.
Soft skills are more difficult to identify and quantify than hard skills, but they include the following:
- Analytical thinking
Transferable skills encompass any abilities or knowledge that you can use in different professions and industries.
Include the Appropriate Keywords for the Position You’re Applying for
Keywords are now more important than ever for the success of your resume or application. They will help you get noticed by the algorithms that search for and rank job applicants.
The best way to find out what keywords an employer is looking for is to read the job description thoroughly. From there, you can figure out what they value most in potential employees: their skillset, work experience, and education. Next, go through your resume, and make sure you have included all the keywords that are relevant to the company.
Focus on Your Accomplishments and Not Your Responsibilities
Your resume should focus on your accomplishments and not your responsibilities. The purpose of a resume is to convince an employer of your suitability for a given job.
There are many ways in which you can do this without resorting to talking about the day-to-day tasks you perform. For example, talk about the goals that you accomplished or the results that you achieved.
Don’t rely on phrases such as ‘Responsible for’ or ‘Duties included’. It’s better to use phrases such as, ‘successfully managed’, and ‘achieved’, and then back your statement up with specific evidence. For example, don’t say, ‘Achieved a rise in productivity of the team’, say, ‘Achieved a 20% rise in productivity over a 6-month period’.
Avoid Excessive Use of Adjectives and Adverbs
It is important to include the right mix of words when writing a resume. You should avoid overusing adjectives and adverbs because they may be interpreted as self-congratulatory and insincere. You don’t need to say, ‘an incredible 20% rise in productivity over an extremely tight 6-month period’. Let your experience and achievements speak for themselves without unnecessary emphasis.
Eliminate the ‘Objective’ Section from Your Resume
Objectives provide no information about your skills or experience. They can be filled with sentences that sound generic like, ‘I am looking for a challenging position in which I can improve my skills’ or ‘I am confident in my abilities to help this company grow’. Such statements give no indication about what you can do for an employer and the benefits they receive when they employ you.
Save yourself the space for something far more important…
Write a Concise Summary at the Top That Captures the Reader’s Attention!
Place your personal summary at the top of your resume, so that it is the first impression of you as a candidate for accounting jobs. You should make sure that it showcases your strengths, skills, relevant experience, and accomplishments to entice recruiters to review your whole resume.
Your aim should be to state who you are, what you do, and what you bring to the table in two or three sentences – and encourage the reader to want to read more. (Don’t forget to include those keywords!)
Can You Write the Perfect Resume?
The goal of any resume is to get the hiring manager or recruiter interested enough to learn more about you – to invite you to interview. Therefore, your resume should give them an overview of what you have done, and how those experiences relate to the position they are filling.
Asking how long a resume should be is like asking how long a piece of string is. It depends on your experience and the accounting jobs you have occupied in the past. But your resume should be brief and concise, so it doesn’t overwhelm a reader with information that may not be relevant.
It is easy to get carried away when writing a resume. A professional can help you tailor the perfect resume and ensure that it includes everything it must, without it becoming the next version of War and Peace!
Are you resume ready for the best accounting jobs? Let us help you find them. Submit your resume to 6 Degrees. We’ll cast our expert eye over it and help you make sure it’s fit to send to your next employer (and yes, we are that confident of placing you).