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I remember my first resume. I rented an IBM Selectric (an electric typewriter) to type my resume. Once I was able to get a version without corrections (most corrections were clearly visible on an electric typewriter), I went to the local Stationery Store to have my resume offset printed. So, resumes were really difficult to create and “copy”. No one that I knew had multiple resumes (who had the time). Then, of course, the Xerox machine came along quickly followed by the PC. Typing and printing your resume became fairly easy. “Power Words, “Key Words” and “Action Words” soon became popular. Not too much of a problem until, of course, people started using quick scans of resumes for key words. Along with every technological advancement in resume production some other twist has been added to keep us on our toes.
Multiple resumes are not really new, but the concept has become more popular lately as the competition for a limited number of jobs has moved up a few notches. Not everyone needs multiple resumes, much depends on your skill set, education and experience.
- What are Multiple Resumes? – Basically, resume versions (multiple resumes) highlight the differences in your background and experience. You are not going to be dishonest, you are just going to highlight specific parts of your experience that are the focus of one of your resumes. Mostly, this is a re-write of existing information. The key is to emphasize experience (as well as keywords) specific to the job type.
- How Many Resumes do You Need? – The biggest factor driving multiple resumes is the depth and diversity of your job experience. The more diverse your work experience, the more likely you will need multiple resumes. Much depends on your and what is driving your job search. If you are interested in several different career paths, then you should have one resume version for each job function. Keep in mind that “too much of a good thing” applies to resumes as well. Many versions is hard to manage.
- Writing Multiple Resumes – Writing your resume can be a long and painful process. The thought of writing multiple resumes may be too much for some of us to contemplate. The good news is that much of your main resume can be copied in one or more of your resume alternatives. You will obviously use the same name, education and job experience. Therefore, not everything needs to be redone.
Having multiple resumes provides the flexibility to expand the range of applications for job opportunities. There are many resources available to you to help create multiple resumes. Multiple resumes will not only help you when looking for a new job, but will also help when applying for positions within your current company.