On Father’s Day, we celebrate the support that fathers give their children, including helping them prepare to find and succeed at a career.
Unfortunately, 42% of HR managers receive resumes from unqualified candidates, according to a survey by Robert Half Management Resources—not surprising, since 78% of professionals in the same survey admitted they would apply for a job despite not meeting the job requirements. I always urge job seekers to concentrate on positions where they can meet the job requirements. Otherwise, their job search will be mired in frustration.
Even if a company is open to training new employees (84%), the company wants to know that the candidate who is applying is very close in skills to the candidate they are hoping for. They also would like some evidence that the candidate is trainable. That is why it is essential that you:
- Read the job description or posting before you send in your resume. Make a list of all the skills mentioned in the resume and other qualifications such as geographic location. How many of them can you fulfill right now?
- Check that your resume highlights those essential skills and qualifications. A list of skills is not enough; you must show how you used your skills to benefit your previous and current employers.
- Rework your resume if needed to describe required skills that you may not have used recently or used only in volunteer positions. You might add a few bullet points to your summary to focus on skills that would otherwise not show up until much later in your career history.
- Find out if there are classes you can take to fill in any gaps. Even if you have not yet finished a course, attendance shows your willingness and ability to learn.
- Remember to cover soft skills that are critical for learning, such as communication, collaboration, and experience in Lean or similar programs that lead to new ways of thinking and working.
- Use the cover letter or email to reinforce your capabilities.
Meeting a company’s job requirements is essential if you want to move on to an interview and eventually get hired. If you are concerned that your resume does not adequately represent your skills and qualifications or if you are stymied by a job description that seems impossible to match, please contact me. I have years of experience designing resumes that help job seekers qualify for the jobs they want.