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Resume Updates: How Often?

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By Jacqui Barrett-Poindexter

Maintaining an updated resume – or, transforming it — in this rapidly changing career environment is imperative at any time, and particularly now, when the buyers’ market prevails. Ensuring your value shines and each career assertion resonates with your target company’s needs and showing how you solve their pain is important to inspire interviews.

In light of this, I recently answered the following question on Quora: How Often Should a Resume Be Updated?

The reality is that some careerists are so immersed in their roles that physically updating their resume in a meaningful, regular way is a huge challenge. I’d recommend, at the least, keeping a running log — this could be a printed or virtual document where you jot down job wins/challenges/metrics regularly (weekly/monthly) to ensure that when you are ready to ‘update’ your resume (every 6 months or even once every year or so) you are equipped.

As well, my experience has shown that even a couple of years in a new role and/or career direction may compel a resume strategy ‘rewrite.’ What may be thought of simply as an update then becomes a newly strategized career story — this is based on a number of factors, usually the greatest of which are YOUR career goals and direction you wish to steer your career have shifted, often dramatically.

My final suggestion is: be VERY CLEAR on your 3-5 key areas of value YOU offer and be equally clear on the type of company (small, mid-sized, large, Fortune 500, etc.), company culture, specific type of position/job/role and then all you need to do is maintain one focused resume that will attract your career opportunities. Taking a stand and being crystal clear on your goals will eradicate the communication clutter that erupts when you try to maintain multiple resumes focused on diverse targets.

Zeroing in on your goals every 6 months, year or so and reevaluating your single resume strategy will propel your career to new levels!

I wrote a post on Resume Updates that you may find helpful, here: Nipped and Tucked Resumes.

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