Monday, January 25, 2016

Professional Summary – Make It Count

To make a professional summary work for your resume the content needs to be substantive.


Substantive content wins both the human reader and higher scoring by the Applicant Tracking Software (ATS) being used by most companies to manage resume submissions.

This is important because no hiring manager has ever been swayed by a marketing blurb or hyperbolic language to interview or hire someone.

The technology is less forgiving. At a minimum the algorithms score resumes by ranking the 8-parts of speech. We can reasonably assume adjectives and adverbs (hype) work against a positive ranking of the resume.

Here is an example of what not to do:
“Result-oriented, team-leader, open door mentor with a collaborative approach to success and achievement in a fast-paced environment dedicated to winning.”

This example fails because it contains hyperbolic or empty language. There is no substance. There are no keywords. There is no mention of specific experience. Hiring managers and recruiters see these type of professional summaries and view them as unoriginal at a minimum.

We also know the “eyes” are looking for an optimal focal point to follow along the text. To take advantage of this phenomena, you want to keep your paragraphs to approximately 3-lines each on a 1-inch margin document.

To make the professional summary easier to develop follow the grammar rules for a preamble.

A preamble is a “legal” run-on sentence. It is designed to trick the reader into following along for the length of the text.

Here is an example to model:
“Project manager with expertise in SCUM and Agile on-time task completion frameworks with experience managing remote and co-located teams in a matrix structure supporting aviation, software and construction projects.”

This text works because it is informative. The reader learns something for their efforts. They harvest 3 to 5 pieces of data.

Technically, the preamble showcases the job title (Project Manager) which is a keyword. This helps how the resume is ranked by the technology as well.

It also uses the word “expert.” This replaces the word “experience” which is over-used and more vague in meaning. Between these 2-words, expert is stronger. If you compare “expert” to a years of experience statements such as “20 years of experience”; which sounds better?

Next the text mentions two methodologies (SCUM/Agile). These are keywords shared in the context of “tasks” which relates directly to typical job functions.

The candidate telegraphs their experience working with “remote and co-located teams.” This phrase is stronger than the usual statement of “all levels of management” or “across departments.” It also shows he or she did the work without authority (matrix structure).

Then the preamble closes with specific industry mentions (aviation, software, constructions).

If you are willing to take a systematic approach to your content to engage the human and the software, you can improve your chances of being seen as a viable candidate!

My Lead-Page for the book is

This Link is to the print and Kindle version on Amazon http://www.Amazon.Com/-/dp/0692525602/

The author page on Amazon is www.Amazon.Com/Author/DirkSpencer

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The book is called Resume Psychology Resume Hacks & Traps Revealed- Beat the Machine. Be Seen. Get Hired! by Dirk Spencer. ISBN-10: 0692525602 and ISBN-13: 978-0692525609 available in print and Kindle eBook.

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