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Why the Resume Update When You’re Not Looking for Work?

10 Feb, 2012

Why the Resume Update When You’re Not Looking for Work?

Whether the economy is crashing or booming, it is crucial to keep your resume updated and ready to be sent out on a moment’s notice!

There is no such thing as job security in today’s world. Many unfortunate people were shocked to learn that when they found themselves jobless in 2008 and 2009. People at all levels who had felt secure in their jobs lost them. Construction firms closed and construction project managers and laborers had to look for new jobs. Law firms let both partners and associates go as the demand for their services declined. Many corporations and small businesses either released employees or cut employee hours and salaries in order to remain solvent.

The unemployment rate in 2009 was the highest it had been in 26 years. For those people who had kept their resumes current, the initial shock of having to get back into the job search was not as painful as for those who had not.

If the economy is good and your position secure, why keep your resume updated?

Savvy professionals keep their resumes updated whether or not they are contemplating a career move. There are several reasons to do this. The first is the possibility of promotion. Many companies like to promote from within rather than hiring from outside the organization. Because your company’s executives and human resource professionals are not always aware of your accomplishments, you need to make sure they become aware of them if you want to be considered for promotion.

If you get a call from a recruiter telling you about an opportunity that interests you, are you ready to send your resume immediately or will you need to take a week or two to update it? If the economy suddenly sours and you are let go, will you be ready to immediately start your job search with an updated resume?

Whether you write your resume yourself or have it written professionally, there are a few things you need to do to make updating it fairly easy. Keep a file just for that purpose. What should be in it?

  • If you receive an oral or written commendation, file it.
  • If you lead or participate in a project, keep a description of the project and your part in it in your file.
  • If you initiate a process improvement, make changes that increase efficiency or decrease costs, put that information in your file.
  • If you take a relevant course or workshop, include it; be sure to jot down the exact name of the course, the provider, and the date you completed it. If you are promoted, include the date of promotion, a job description, and why you were promoted. Be sure to include the challenges of each promotion, the actions you took, and the results.

Include in your file anything that you think might be relevant to updating your resume.
It’s so easy to forget what you have accomplished, and you’ll be glad later that you took the time to do it. The stress of losing a job is only compounded when you do not possess a strong, updated resume. So be prepared for the unexpected, whether it’s favorable or not!

Betty Williams

Want to learn more about this career professional? Check out a full list of career articles, contact information, and biographical info by visiting her Career Experts member profile. LEARN MORE

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