Engineering Resumes: How to Paint a Picture of Effectiveness
|Stand out from the crowd by writing your engineering resume with purpose.|
In your engineering resume, you must do justice to the qualifications you possess. You can be the most qualified candidate out there for a given position but not get the job if the employer cannot deduce this from your resume and subsequent interview. Qualification does not mean having a long list of accolades; rather, it means you need to show your potential employer that you possess the necessary skills and more to fill his needs and specifically the needs of the open position. Creating a resume in this way is what makes it a position-oriented resume.
For many people, creating a position-oriented resume may mean changing their focus from what they want from a company to what they have to offer a company. It may take some getting used to, but it will be more effective in getting you more interview calls and, eventually, the job you want. For example, let's say you're an engineer right out of college and you have your eye set on a position in a firm that constructs and designs bridges. Since you are a recent graduate, you may not have as much direct work experience as another candidate who has years of experience under his belt. What you can do is show you are just as valuable if not more so than a senior candidate by applying your knowledge as an engineer to the specific needs of the employer. This means tying in any projects you worked on while in college related to the design and construction of bridges and giving examples of why your knowledge would be more valuable than that of another candidate.
The strength of this approach lies in the fact that the average employer is swamped by resumes that are boring carbon copies of one another. Your application instantly becomes more valuable than anyone else's in the stack when you show that you not only recognize what the problem is, you know how to fix it. If you can show that you're not just qualified for the position but specifically suited for it, you are much more likely to get the interview.
This does not mean that you should just leave out any of your main qualifications and accomplishments. Your awards, work experience, studies, and research should all be included in a clear and concise manner. These will build the foundation of how you learned the things you did and what has made you the knowledgeable engineer you are today.
Make sure the information presented in your resume is logically ordered, concise, and easy to understand. You want your potential employer to be able to glean the necessary information and find what he's looking for upon the first review. Once you have written your resume, read it again and ask yourself, would you hire you if you were the employer?
A tip that is always useful is to commit to doing little bit of research about the company before you start writing. This can be as simple as studying the job description posted by the firm you are interested in working with to actually calling the potential employer and asking them what they're looking for in a new employee. By knowing precisely what a prospective employer needs, you will be able to effectively paint your resume to show a picture of specific talents and qualifications.
By specifically tailoring your resume to a company or firm in this way, you are one step closer to your goal than all of the other applicants who simply turn in a boring list of past accolades and responsibilities. Help your potential employer to better visualize you as an employee by describing for them in detail what you are capable of. Put your engineering skills to use by making each section of your resume work like clockwork towards your goal.