Resume Upkeep: 4 Strategies

Resume Upkeep: 4 Strategies

     

    Friday, September 28th - Ellie Y. 

    What is resume upkeep?  Simply put, resume upkeep is keeping your resume in good condition.  It is keeping your resume up-to-date, current and relevant, both to where you are in life, and where you want to go.  Many people don’t practice good resume upkeep, and are struck by feelings of nervousness and unpreparedness when they suddenly have to submit it.  To avoid unnecessary stress, help yourself out by keeping your resume current.  Here are 4 resume upkeep strategies that will help you feel confident and prepared the next time an opportunity arrives:

             1. Keep a resume on hand

    The first thing that will help you practice good resume upkeep is having a copy of your resume on you at all times.  This could mean keeping a physical copy in your backpack or purse, keeping a file on a USB stick, or having a document saved to iCloud or a similar place where you can access it. 

    It may seem ridiculous to keep a resume at all times, but life has a way of opening doors unexpectedly and its best to be overprepared than underprepared!  Getting in the habit of doing this will also help you to mentally prepare for resume upkeep.  By remembering to keep a copy with you, you might also be more mindful towards daily experiences that can contribute to your resume.  For example, perhaps you complete a new, skillful task at work.  Just quick pull out your resume, jot a note down on it, and return to your resume later to flesh out your experience into a bullet point.

              2. Update constantly

    Perhaps you already landed the job and think the resume can be tossed on the back burner and forgot about until you wish to apply to another job.  Think again!  Even while on the job it is important to take mental notes and update your resume.  Especially during the first weeks and months in a new position.  Many times, people create a resume with positions that are older and they struggle to think back and provide bullet points under these positions.  By updating your work or volunteer positions as you go, you will have a fresher experience in your head, and the bullet points will be easier to write.  It’s also a great time saver because instead of creating an entire resume, you just build upon yours as you go. 

             3. Keep a folder to compile relevant resume information 

    Some people are really pressed for time and can’t always update their resume instantly.  A helpful strategy to deal with this is to plan a time when you can sit down and purposefully edit your resume.  This could be as simple as one weekend a month, looking at your resume to see if any quick changes or improvements need to be made. Its important to track what you accomplish during your time in between updating your resume.  Keeping a file folder in your desk or an electronic one on your desktop screen is a good start.  This is where you can put any relevant documents, notes or memos that are school-, work-, or volunteer-related.  When your scheduled resume-time comes to fruition you can sit down and go through your folder, adjusting your resume from any of the information that may be in your folder. 

             4. Get a free resume and cover letter update at the Experiential Learning Hub

    The last strategy that will help you improve your resume upkeep skills, is by consulting with other people to get more perspective.  Having others look over and edit your resume is a great way of getting an unbiased and fresh perspective on how your resume visually looks, and whether it sounds like the best version it can be.  Luckily the Experiential Learning Hub at the U of G offers an unlimited number of meetings that you can set up in order to look over your resume, and even your cover letter too!  Better still, when you have an interview coming up, you can schedule a mock interview with the Career Services Peer Helping Team in order to gain practice and constructive criticism.

     

    Hopefully some of these strategies can be helpful and useful for you.  Resume upkeep is important to practice – your future self will thank you!