Career Development Center (CDC) Advice: Target Your Resume

Mike Van Lear and student

By Michael Van Lear, Director

When crafting a resume, applicants often struggle with what to include and what to leave out. This conundrum can best be dealt with by focusing on the organizations and positions of interest. Scrap the one-size-fits-all resume approach when searching for employment. 


When reviewing a job posting, focus on the summary, qualifications and duties. Key descriptors in these areas should help applicants better determine what to include in their resumes. If you possess the skills included in the posting, they should be listed in your skills or summary of qualifications section. In your work history, did your responsibilities include some of those listed in the duties section of the posting? If so, describe how you met those responsibilities. Required credentials are identified in the qualifications section of the positing. List those credentials on your resume if you have them. 


When saving your resume, include at least your last name, the organization’s name and job title in the file name. In doing so, the employer will see that you’ve created a resume specific to their organization and the posted position. This will create a great first impression before they’ve even opened your resume. 


Once you’ve crafted a resume for a particular job title you now have a template to work off of when applying for similar positions in the future. All you’ll need to do is make slight adjustments based on the next job posting, and of course, resave it according to the new organization and position.  


For more information, access HPU’s Career Development Center for its Guide to Resume Writing. Remember, all HPU students and alumni receive free resume reviews. Contact us at cdc@hpu.edu or call 808-544-0230 to schedule an appointment.