Even if you’ve read thousands of CVs as an HR professional, authoring your own is still a demanding task. It’s challenging to take a step back and assess your career objectively so that you can pinpoint what makes you stand out from the crowd of other contenders. How will you stand out from the rest? What is your unique selling point that employers won’t be able to resist? How can you make yourself memorable and desirable when seeking a new position? If you are targeting a Chief Human Resource Officer (CHRO) role, then you need to consider additional guidelines.
As you craft your CV and begin to brand yourself for potential professional opportunities, the answers to many questions should lay the foundation of what that process looks like. It’s crucial to remember: there is no one-size-fits-all guide when it comes HR resumes. However, by adhering to these seven key tips any HR professional, manager, or executive can be confident they are presenting themselves in a way that highlights their worth and experience in its full capacity.
1. Boost Your Brand with a Captivating Headline
Begin your CV with a professional headline that defines who you are in regards to your job objective. Immediately following this, place contact information such as phone number and direct links to both email address and LinkedIn profile prominently at the top of the page. This makes it easy for readers to get an instant understanding of whether you’re qualified as an HR generalist, employee benefits specialist or senior organizational development executive in just one glance!
Once you have your headline crafted, think about adding some subheadings to further prove your proficiency. Do you specialize in a certain field? Have any credentials that make you stand out from the rest? How about expertise on an HR challenge of relevance today? With only a few words, you can quickly convey information regarding yourself and what sets you apart from other contenders for the job.
The first line, “Human Resources Leadership,” positions her for the level of job she’s targeting; the second line communicates the key attributes of her experience, from talent management to employee motivation; and the third line, “Lead-by-example and encouraging HR strategist known for maximizing employee strengths and career trajectories,” is what we refer to as a branding statement, her unique value proposition.
Take heed of the headlines on your CV, and make sure that you only include information relevant to what kind of job you want in the future. This is essential as it will ensure that employers recognize you for being a suitable candidate for any position which may catch their interest. Be certain to highlight only those qualifications and skills necessary for positions that suit your career goals!
If you have considerable experience in compensation and benefits but don’t want it to be the focus of your next position, don’t make the mistake of making a headline out of it. Rather than drawing attention to something that is not important for readers to consider, instead, list it appropriately under Experience. Strategically select which information needs emphasizing or else risk losing valuable opportunities!
2. Give a Quick Overview of Your Previous Workplaces
Help your readers grasp a clear comprehension of the scope and magnitude of your experience by giving details about the companies you have worked for. You could showcase information such as their number of employees, locations nationwide, total annual revenue, accurate industry or business type, and other relevant facts that would better equip them to understand your work history.
Just as with your headline, be intentional and thoughtful. If you have only worked for huge public organizations thus far and now desire to transition into a smaller private business, the size of such enterprises may terrify potential employers. Consider what you wish to accomplish in terms of career goals and add pertinent details that make you an ideal fit for those companies or associations where you want to work.
3. Emphasize Achievements
Crafting a persuasive and impactful resume is essential in distinguishing yourself from other HR professionals. Without highlighting your unique successes, your CV will lack the vitality to capture hiring managers’ attention.
Your knowledge and expertise are undoubtedly essential, yet employers desire to know more than just that. They want to understand the measurable outcomes you have achieved for a business, how precisely you’ve had an impact on objectives or culture development, what contributions you’ve made towards strengthening HR organizations and more!
Within the provided examples, you will encounter both measurable and intangible success bullets. It is essential to understand that both of these can add tremendous value to your resume, so don’t feel like each bullet point needs a tangible figure associated with it.
As HR professionals, it can be difficult to pin down tangible accomplishments and successes. But we urge you to look further and uncover results wherever possible. When evaluating the problem-solving activity or any other achievement ask yourself what would have happened if that solution wasn’t implemented – this will allow you to understand why the action was important in terms of business success, find measurable positive outcomes, and quantify your achievements accurately.
4. Intersperse Human Resources Keywords to Enhance Your CV
You recognize just how critical keywords are for both humans and the computer algorithms scanning your CV. Should you fail to include these significant terms, it might be understood that you don’t have what is required and your resume will then fall through the cracks. Don’t let that take place! Make sure to incorporate all of those crucial phrases in order to guarantee success with job hunting!
As you craft your resume, be sure to utilize keywords in all sections. For example, create a “Core Competencies” or “Professional Skills Summary” section at the top for added emphasis on these qualities. Then make sure that these keywords are woven into every portion of your document so recruiters can easily identify them when they’re scanning through CVs.
Take a look at Amanda’s resume and one will understand why she is such an asset in the HR field. Her Professional Experience section does not simply list her job responsibilities, but instead contains keywords carefully woven into her achievement bullets so that readers can quickly glean a clear understanding of her expertise. Moreover, it also provides indisputable evidence of the value she brings to any organization.
As soon as you glance at the Professional Experience section, vivid keywords will immediately catch your eye. This technique is extremely useful for enhancing keyword density in your resume and making it easy to scan. You’ll effortlessly stand out from other candidates when someone quickly assesses your expertise just by skimming the bold words!
5. Maximize Your Chances of Being Seen by Applicant Tracking Systems
Make Sure to Optimize Your Chief Human Resource Officer (CHRO) Resume!
Continuing our discourse on the relevance of keywords…as an HR expert, you have a leg up on other applicants. You can delve into what actually occurs when resumes are filtered through an ATS with keyword searches. Utilize this understanding to your advantage!
With a wide variety of Applicant Tracking Systems (ATSs), and no two humans conducting candidate searches alike, it is difficult to ensure the perfect outcome from each ATS scan. Nevertheless, you can—and should—apply certain best practices when formatting your CV in order to optimize keyword integration and density for greater visibility.
- Be Unique and Showcase Your Strengths
While your CV must include evidence of your professional experience and educational credentials to make you a competitive candidate, there are other details that can be included if they prove pertinent to the job. Make sure to look for any relevant information that might set you apart from the competition! These items add further value, distinction and qualification.
Make sure to include any qualifications that align with your professional background; this could be anything from SHRM-SCP, membership with organizations such as SHRM or the OD Network, board of director appointments and other leadership roles; giving presentations or speaking publicly in events; being featured on different media platforms or quoted by them; and publications you’ve been a part of.
We highly suggest you center the content of your CV on professional matters and ignore civic or local organizations. The space allotted for a resume is limited to one or two pages – so it’s essential that each sentence demonstrates why you are an ideal candidate.
- Craft Your Copy for Concise Clarity
A resume that is effective and up-to-date must be written in a concise, straightforward manner. Individuals don’t have the time nor interest to read through inconsequential experiences, superfluous adjectives, and excessive information which can make resumes cumbersome. Therefore, it’s important to keep your resume clear and concise for maximum impact.
Crafting an effective piece of writing is not a one-time task. It involves discipline and recurrent reviews, as well as strategic editing to make sure only the most vital points stay in line with your professional brand and current career goals. Repeatedly examining what you write helps refine it down so all that remains are essential ideas for maximum impact on readers.
To create a stunning CV, not only should you write concisely and effectively, but also pay attention to the format. Say goodbye to lengthy paragraphs (anything over three or four lines) and introduce ample white space for an attractive look that encourages readers from skimmers to thorough scanners.
By applying these seven tips to crafting a standout Human Resources CV, you can stand out from the other highly-qualified candidates who are vying for the same position. As you write, keep in mind that your document is designed to appeal to and attract potential employers. Make sure to highlight skills, accomplishments, keywords, and results that directly align with their goals as well as yours; this will help ensure your future success! If you targeting a CHRO role, then there are additional guidelines to follow.
When you invest the time to highlight your strengths and abilities, as well as craft an eye-catching resume showcasing what makes you unique, there is a distinct possibility that someone will recognize it. This could lead to more interviews and perhaps even land you your dream job!
Are you looking for more information on how to write an HR bio? Check out our Human Resource (HR) Bio free guide.
About the Author
Arno Markus BA, MSc. | 20x Award-Winning CPRW (Certified Professional Résumé Writer).
Arno Markus BA, MSc., CPRW, CEO, and Founder of iCareerSolutions is a Multi-Award-Winning Certified Professional Resume Writer, a powerful LinkedIn Profile Writer, and Personal Brand & Job Search Strategist with global experience. Arno has done recruitment consulting in Helsinki, Amsterdam, and Toronto. He also worked in Nuclear Power for the Federal Government prior to switching to empowering professionals to achieve ambitious career goals full-time. Arno is an expert at dissecting job descriptions and marketing his clients to ensure they get where they want to be in their Career.
He began his winning streak in 2017 receiving the National ROAR Award – Experience Writer Modern Design from the National Resume Writers’ Association. Since then he has consistently ranked among the top writers in the North America. In 2018 he received many honorable mentions, including Best Technology Resume and Best Executive Resume. Then in 2020, he received two TORI Awards from Career Directors International, bringing the total recognitions he has received to 20 industry Awards and Honorable Mentions. Last year he received Best IT Resume by the Career Professionals Association, served as an Awards Judge, and was nominated for the Board of Directors for the National
Resume Writing Association.
For more information on Arno, you can check out his LinkedIn profile, at https://www.linkedin.com/in/arno-markus-resume-writer/ or his website at https://icareersolutions.com/
Arno Markus BA, MSc., CPRW (Certified Professional Résumé Writer), and Founder of iCareerSolutions. Consistently ranked among the Top Résumé & LinkedIn Profile Writers in North America. 16X Résumé Writing Awards including 2020 Best IT Résumé and Nominated for 2020 Best Executive Résumé.