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Career switching? Top 3 resume must dos

Are you trying to change industries and transition to that meaningful dream job? It’s common for those looking for their first meaningful job to wonder how best to present their past career experience when making their pitch with new employers. When making a career switch it is essential to leverage your current skill set and not shy away from the obvious questions. You don’t have to have a history in the industry you’re applying for to make a good impression, but you do need to explain why it is you’ve found your passion now. Here’s our list of the top three things to keep in mind when preparing your resume and cover letter for the leap to a new and fulfilling career.

1.    Explain how your previous job experience will benefit the company

It’s tough finding a new job, let alone completely switching industries. Make a great first impression by describing how your previous job experience is relevant to the job you are applying for and how it will benefit the company. Too many qualified candidates don’t spell out their transferable skills to the Hiring Manager (remember to use the words “transferable skills”). Remember that companies in the meaningful space are looking for people with the passion and the skills. If you’ve got the skills, tell them!

2.    Acknowledge why you are a career switcher

When the Hiring Manager reads your application it needs to be clear why you are switching careers. Strong candidates are often overlooked by Hiring Managers because they don’t understand why the candidate is switching careers. The obvious question will be why are you switching careers now? If you’re committed to making the switch you’ll have a great answer to this question, and that answer should be front and centre. It’s always good news to a Hiring Manager to hear how your passion aligns with theirs.

3.   Use relatable language

When making your pitch for employment it’s to your advantage to speak the language of the industry you are going to. Try to avoid using the buzz words from your current industry. What’s important is your transferable skills and passion come shining through. Write with clarity and purpose. Lots of companies use automated searches to scan for key words and screen candidates. Your resume and cover letter should highlight your accomplishments and skills with key words that speak directly to the Hiring Manager.

If this doesn’t sound like rocket science, we agree! Non-profits, social enterprises and CSR departments are looking for talented people, first and foremost, but they’re going to lean towards candidates that have a parallel passion. If that’s clear on your resume and cover letter, you’re light years ahead of the pack. Try it out with some of our posted jobs and let us know how it goes!


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