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National Resume Writers' Association Conference Top Takeaways

After spending 2 1/2 dazzling days at the annual National Resume Writers’ Association (NRWA) conference back in September, I had to share some standout insights from my absolute favorite session, the HR / Recruiter Panel.

National Resume Writers' Association Conference Top Takeaways

One resounding takeaway from the assembly of hiring pros at the 2014 National Resume Writers’ Association conference was the green light to get creative. From the mouth of one recruiter: “Make it fun!”

The panel unanimously agreed that sprinkles of humor and playful language or tone within your resume and LinkedIn profile can truly tip the scale in your favor when it comes time to choose who gets interviewed.

An HR manager told the story an unforgettable candidate who got the interview, and the job, after writing a cover letter that read like a love letter. Pure genius.

And speaking of genius, the panel applauded those who’ve worked with pros like me on their career docs. The group recognized that those who invest in pros like me demonstrate a clarity in career direction and a standout presentation during interviews. Recruiters are invested in putting the best candidates forward and acknowledged that their job is made easier when candidates like you have gone through a process like mine to define direction and verbalize accomplishments that directly relate to your career goals.

Makes sense, right?

The panel confirmed that they love when you make it easy for them to explore you further by having live links on your resume and within your email signature, LinkedIn being the site they’re most interested to view you on.

And on the topic of LinkedIn, one recruiter stated, with emphasis, what you probably already know: LinkedIn is no longer optional. It’s a professional must. If you look good enough on your resume, the powers that be are going to probe deeper to see how you present yourself and what more they can learn about you on LinkedIn. If your profile’s a skeleton, unfocused or lacking connections, they’ll notice.

Since the vast majority of recruiters and HR managers are forming their first impression of candidates like you through LinkedIn (94% are using it as a sourcing tool), the panel advised us pros to spend lots of time on profile sections that show up toward the top on mobile devices, as they’re using the LinkedIn app more and more and don’t want to have to scroll down to determine your value and fit.

These are just a few of the takeaways from a single hour-long session, so you can imagine all of the great info I have to share and apply to getting my clients noticed.

I hope you can take advantage of similar opportunities to invest in your career and expand your expertise, because knowledge isn’t just power, it’s energizing, it’s professionally fulfilling, and by gosh, you’re worth it!

Image courtesy of Gratisography.

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