Years of acquiring skills and accomplishments could wind up working against you if your resume is tired and an old-school format.
Seasoned pharmacists, especially those with 25 or more years of work experience, bring value and know-how to our profession. Yet, if you are in the job market for a new position, due to company downsizing, relocating, or wanting a position change, it will come as no surprise there are fewer interviews or new hires in this age group. Why? Those years of acquiring skills and accomplishments could wind up working against you if your current resume presents itself as tired and old-school to your potential new employer.
Here are some resume tips for energizing, and taking years off your resume to keep yourself competitve in the job seeking arena:
1. Update your format. Like fashion, resume formats go in and out of style. Today's trend calls for a format that is clean and modern by minimizing boldface, bullets, and italics. Switch out your career objective section for a career summary that highlights what you bring to the job, rather than what you are seeking from a position. Your resume is probably going to be submitted electronically and reviewed on a computer screen, so make sure both your paper and screen versions look good, and are easy to read, before submitting to potential employers.
2. Clean up your contact information. Younger job applicants have eliminated landline phone numbers on their resumes, and so should you. Likewise, exchange your home address for an email address, and add your LinkedIn profile address to your contact information. Hiring managers and recruiters rely heavily upon this premier social networking website aimed at professionals, to search and vet job candidates. Your LinkedIn profile should highlight your professional life, and complement your resume.
3. Eliminate graduation dates. Although the Pharm.D. degree has been around since 1950, having a Bachelor of Science rather than a Pharm.D. degree means you graduated prior to 2000 when the ACPE decided to longer accredit such programs. Given this information, employers may infer your age by when you graduated or screen out applicants over a certain age, so eliminate your graduation date from your resume. Listing your school, its location, and your degree is adequate. Employers can always google your age if they are interested.
4. Focus on recent work history. Employers will be focusing on your last 10 years of work experience, and what is relevant to the position. Highlight job functions, transferrable 'skills, and certifications which are applicable for the position to which you are applying. Include dates to provide a timeframe with this information. Relevant work history, accomplishments, and promotions from earlier years can be highligted in a separate section without dates.
5. Have a social media presence. Today's millennial pharmacists are linked to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and other social media. Open, update, or cleanup existing social media accounts to complement your resume. If you are checked out by your potential employer (and you will be) via a search engine, you won't show up as nonexistent.
6. Sharpen your tech skills. The stereotype of seasoned pharmacists lacking technology and computer skills still exists. Weave your existing knowledge of computer programs, training, and skills into your resume, and show how you use technology specific to the pharmacy profession. Lacking tech skills? Get up to speed rather than embelish your resume. Online programs, such as Skillshare or those offered by your institution or professional pharmacy associations, can bring you up to speed.