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I have to say this. It pains me as a resume writer to say but often when applying for a job, resumes are only glanced at. Not read thoroughly but skimmed for numbers, certifications, and items that stand out. You probably suspected this…

So, if no one is reading it, why is a good resume so important?

I believe that your resume is more for you than the employer. It tells the story of your professional journey. It should include your wins, saves, and personal development. A well written resume is your reminder of why any employer is lucky to have you. Most important, your resume can help you ace the interview.

Here’s how….

1. Confidence. Having a solid resume with clear facts, numbers, and specifics can help you feel prepared. Preparation builds confidence and confidence reduces interview anxiety.

2. Differentiation. Knowing where your key accomplishments are on your resume and being able to highlight those while pointing them out on the interviewer’s copy will increase your chances of being remembered during the decision process. It will also help you with a quick, detailed answer to one of those typical “tell us of a time you found success…” type questions. That answer may sound like, “As you see on my resume here, when I worked at Company X, I succeeded at….”

3. Applied Skills. It is easy to forget the knowledge we gain from one position to the next and how that knowledge keeps building upon itself. For example, if in college you worked in a customer service role and you now find yourself applying for a position at a university that requires you to interact with donors, you can point to that college job to compare the “customer is always right” philosophy with that of a “keeping donors happy” mindset. Building correlations of skills and experience proves that you are a dynamic applicant who can easily apply your knowledge to build solutions.

4. Personal Development. Most employers are looking for employees who value self-growth and advancement. A good resume tells your story from one success to the next. When an interviewer says, “tell me about yourself,” you can use your resume as a map from the bottom up and point to each positive experience that led to the next. Add a smile and a tone of pride in your voice and watch the offers come.