News·2 min read

What to Put on a Resume to Stand Out in Today’s Job Market

What to Put on a Resume to Stand Out in Today’s Job Market
May 26, 2020

The Story

Job openings are hard to come by and the applicant pool is only getting bigger.

You’re telling me.

Now more than ever, your resume should be tailored to the specific job you’re applying for.

What should I delete?

Not so fast. First make a master resume. That’s the long version that lists alll of your skills and experiences. Like your aunt who just doesn’t know when to stop talking, this resume needs editing. But it’s necessary to reference and cherry-pick from when you’re creating a resume for a specific role.

And then?

Make the short version, or the one you’ll actually send out to a potential employer. This will change based on the job you’re applying for. You should absolutely fit your resume to the role to get noticed. Pro tip: adding that you’re flexible and able to quickly pivot or adapt will be important right now, no matter the industry (as long as that’s true).

How else can I work the system?

By letting us clue you in on an actual system: applicant tracking systems. The software scans applications for specific keywords and puts the ones with the most matches at the top of the recruiter’s pile. So if the job requires “backend database management,” it’s a good idea to use that exact phrase in your resume and cover letter if it’s a skill you actually have.

Anything else I can do to stand out?

Put a professional summary at the top of your resume that details what you offer an employer. Think of it as a brief, 3-5 sentence elevator pitch. In this climate, you want to make your value crystal clear. A summary helps you sell it. Also highlight any remote experience you’ve had. Because working from home isn’t going away anytime soon for a lot of jobs.


Your resume should tell a story. And it’s important to know your audience. A master resume is great for compiling a list of all your skills, but it’s not the one you should attach to every application. Create a resume that speaks to the specific job you’re applying for each time before clicking submit. 

Live Smarter

Sign up for the Daily Skimm email newsletter. Delivered to your inbox every morning and prepares you for your day in minutes.