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Resumes For Boomers

You’re well established in your career and can bring years of experience to any company lucky enough to hire you. So why do older workers often have trouble landing a job? Part of the reason is that age discrimination—though illegal—happens every day, often before a candidate even has the opportunity to interview. To combat this, it’s essential to create a resume that spotlights all of your wonderful experience and downplays potential objections.

•Choose the best format. People right out of college often choose a traditional resume format that starts with education, goes into work experience, and ends with a skills section. This isn’t the best format for more experienced workers, however. Instead, use a functional resume (where your skills are front and center) or a combination resume (which merges the skills-focused functional resume with a reverse chronological format). If you’ve jumped around a lot career-wise, a functional resume may be right for you. If your career has more or less stayed within one industry, you can choose either a functional or a combination format.

•Stay away from dates. This is especially important when it comes to college dates. It’s still a good idea to list your education, but you can note your degree(s) and the college you attended without the associated dates. This applies even if you went back to school later in your career; it’ll confuse employers who expect a 30-year-old to show up for an interview and then meet a 60-year-old. Some resume experts also advise excluding dates related to previous jobs; instead, you can simply state the number of years you were employed at each company or within each position.

•Stick to the rule of 15. The general rule of thumb is to only include positions you’ve held within the last 15 years, but you can be a little more flexible if you’ve been in the same position with the same company for that period of time. This doesn’t mean that you’re out of luck if you have impressive accomplishments that date back more than 15 years. You can create a separate section for successes and list your achievements there.

•Emphasize continual learning. Yes, you have decades of experience, but you’ve probably also been removed from formal education for decades as well. This can be a concern for potential employers who want to be sure that you’ve kept up with changes in your field over the years. To help ease this fear, make sure to prominently list all of the classes and continuing education you’ve participated in. Similarly, it’s essential to broadcast your computer skills.

•Consider downplaying titles. Unfortunately, many hiring managers see titles like “vice president” and assume that you’re out of their price range. This may or may not be true, but you want the chance to find out during the interview process rather than being unilaterally dismissed based on an assumption. Depending on how anxious you are to secure a job, you may want to consider softening lofty job titles a bit—senior manager instead of vice president, for example.

•Slip in your work ethic. Again, right or wrong, it’s assumed that younger professionals don’t have as strong a work ethic or as much loyalty as older generations. This prejudice can actually work to your benefit. Whether in your resume summary or cover letter, subtly incorporate language that conveys your reliability, responsibility, and desire to find a company where you can contribute for years to come.
By Jason Kay – Read resume writer reviews to find the best service for your needs at http://www.jobgoround.com/review_resume_writers.php.

Bill