Writing a great resume can be a challenge, even for job seekers with years of career experience. You want to make your resume stand out, but with all the advice out there on how to format and customize, it can be hard to know what works best. Should you use a traditional or creative layout? Are you including too much information, or not enough? How do you write a summary of qualifications? To help professionals craft a resume that rises above the rest, I’ve asked successful experts: How to Make Your Telecommuting Resume Stand Out.
Ninh Tran, HireTeamMate
Tip 1: Showcase your telecommuting experience you have held before e.g. freelancer gigs and any other remote OK jobs. Make sure you mark these jobs with “remote” or “off-site” or “telecommuted” keywords. Most telecommuting jobs that are hiring are project based, so showcase any completed projects you have worked as a remote worker to demonstrate the ability to execute to completion.<
Tip 2: Demonstrate proficiency AND responsiveness with communication tools that company might be using e.g. “Real-time responsiveness via Email, Skype, Google Hangout, etc.”
Tip 3: If someone emails you regarding your resume for a telecommuting job, respond as soon as possible, if not right away.
Kate Harvey, Chargify
When we are hiring remote workers, we’re looking for some specific traits in addition to the relevant experience necessary for the position:
We want people who finish what they start. If your resume has a “key accomplishments” (or similar) section, make it clear you not only started key projects, but you followed them all the way through to completion (and success).
As a company we want to be always improving, so we want our employees to enjoy learning. To illustrate this on your resume, include any additional (above and beyond what is required) training or certifications you’ve earned/completed.
Simon Slade, Doubledot Media
The best resumes for telecommuters have demonstrated work-from-home success. Even if you’ve never been a formal telecommuter, identify a time when you were efficient and productive in a non-office setting, like out of town or home with a sick child.
Another important tip for a telecommuting resume: It needs to be available online. Many professionals who are looking to hire telecommuters will look on LinkedIn or freelance sites to find them, so make sure your resume has an online presence.
Gwendolyn Kestrel, HotelmarketingWorks
a. Research the Resumes of People at Your Target Company: Most companies with a distributed workforce have bios of their employees. (See Hotel Marketing Works for an example). Look them up on LinkedIn and see how they put together their resumes and what choices they made for layout and emphasis. Are they work-history resumes? Skill-focused resumes?
b. Promote Your Trustworthiness! Embed your ability to meet deadlines in your resume. Include in your descriptions of your job that you delivered or completed things “on schedule” or that you have the “ability to adhere to deadlines.” Under your skills section, be sure to list time management and/or project management.
c. Include Hyperlinks to Samples of Your Work: Don’t clutter your resume with long URLs. Do include a hyperlink (on Office products, highlight the work and hit “CTRL k”). Don’t include everything. Pick 2-4 examples of solid examples of your work.
d. Use Your Target Company’s Lingo: Often resumes get scanned by software that’s seeking particular keywords. Even after getting through an automated system, your resume just gets skimmed by hiring managers who are looking for a key phrase or two. Be sure to look at the word choices made in the job write-up. Is the company looking for “remote workers,” “telecommuting workers,” or do they have “a distributed workforce.” When possible, echo their own terms.
e. Present a Professional Environment: Be mindful of how you refer to your working environment. Even if you’re working on a laptop curled up at the end of a couch with your dog beside you, your words need to convey professionalism. Choose phrases like “my office” to refer to the space you work in rather than just “home.” Likewise, once your resume lands you an interview, be mindful of how you look on that Skype or Zoom call.. What’s in the background? If they ask to see your work space—are you ready to share it? Be prepared.
Roy Cohen, www.careercoachny.
– Don’t use your home address as the principal location of your company. There is a tendency on resumes to provide the actual physical location where you work as the identifying anchor. It will give the impression that you are out of the loop and are disconnected from the real flow of business. It may also imply that you prefer to work remotely. The appropriate location is your company’s headquarters address. Location has a lot to do with impressions and how seriously your experience is viewed. The further you are from the main office the more you are likely to be viewed as marginal and less important to the success of your company..
– Telecommuting, by its very nature, implies that you are comfortable with technology and that you are self-motivated enough to work productively and with a minimum of supervision. These are assets. Make sure that you emphasize these qualities and characteristics in both the summary statement at the top of your resume and in your job descriptions. Provide examples of projects you have successfully worked on or led and how you have done so remotely.
– Include your photo but make sure it is professional and appropriate. Since you work from home you need to overcompensate to show that you get it; that you understand company culture and are prepared to fit in despite the fact that you are not working in a traditional office. On the other hand, if you are applying for a job as a pole dancer or a male stripper, then you are free to celebrate your assets and your photos should proudly convey that message.
Comments from Leslie:
This week’s experts had excellent tips. If you’re looking for a telecommuting job, I recommend bookmarking this page and referring to it to make sure you’re sending the best resume possible. I’d like to echo a few of the most important points:
- Tailor your resume to the industry, job and company you’re applying to. The better the fit, the more likely you’ll move on in the hiring process.
- Always be professional. That includes using formal language, but also responding quickly to any requests made by the employer.
- Have your resume and/or portfolio online. Also, work to get rid of questionable content that can make employers question your character. Employers will Google you, so work to have them find items that show you’re a quality employee.
- If you’re emailing your resume in the body of the email or pasting online, make sure you use basic text to avoid formatting and other issues that can come submitting online. Check out the video below for tips:
Leslie Truex is an ideaphoric writer, speaker, entrepreneur, social worker and mom trying to do it all from the comfort of her home. Since 1998, she's been helping others create careers they love by providing work-at-home information and resources through Work-At-Home Success.
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