3 Simple Resume Updates To Help You Get More Interviews (With Examples)

By Indeed Editorial Team

March 15, 2022

If you have ever applied for a job and not heard back, you likely understand the frustration of never knowing why you weren’t selected. Competition for certain positions can be tough, but by making small yet impactful changes to your resume, you can better your chances for the next position you apply for. In this article, we show you three resume updates you can make—and how to make them—to boost your chances of getting an interview.

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3 impactful ways to improve your resume

1. Use the right keywords

Including keywords from the job description will present you as a strong match for the position. If a particular keyword appears frequently in the job description, you should also repeat that keyword throughout your resume in a natural, organic way. Avoid “keyword stuffing” or repeating a word too many times in the same section–this can appear unnatural and is sometimes flagged by the ATS (automatic tracking system).

Focus on functional terms related to technical skills (hard skills), such as “software development,” “financial analysis” and “B2B sales.” You should also include any software, platforms or coding languages listed as required in the job description. Soft skills are also important, such as “leadership,” “problem-solving” and “negotiation.”

Related: How To Write a Targeted Resume: Tips and Example

2. Highlight the results of your work

Add the benefit, impact or result of the work you completed to highlight its significance and communicate your value to the recruiter or hiring manager. So, instead of stating that you: 

  • Answered phone calls” 

  • “Organized inventory”

  • “Audited reports”

A more effective and compelling description might be:

  • Answered phone calls and provided excellent customer service to improve customer satisfaction.

  • Organized and reviewed inventory to ensure efficient ordering, accurate reporting and lean spending.

  • Audited reports to resolve discrepancies, improve accuracy and increase compliance with regulatory requirements.

Adding some additional context and detail to these descriptions also allows you to incorporate some of those keywords as discussed above.

Read More: 10 Best Skills To Include on a Resume (With Examples)

3. Quantify your accomplishments

To distinguish yourself rom the competition, include specific, measurable accomplishments that demonstrate the scope and impact of your work. Using a SMART framework to demonstrate your experience provides quantifiable results and often feels more authentic to the reader than a general statement about skills or responsibilities. 

To help you brainstorm quantifiable accomplishments, you might ask yourself:

  • Have I ever helped an employer earn more revenue?

  • Have I ever helped an employer save money?

  • Have I ever helped speed up or improve a process?

  • Have I ever helped save a client relationship or improve customer satisfaction?

  • Have I ever had any ideas/solutions or taken action to benefit or improve the company?

  • What positive feedback, positive reviews, awards, special recognition or thanks have I received from supervisors, colleagues, subordinates, customers and/or business partners?

Once you have some measurable accomplishments in mind, you can start trying to quantify them. To quantify your previous accomplishments, consider the following: 

  • Dollar amounts ($): How much more revenue did you help bring in annually? How much money did you save the company and over how many years?

  • Percentages (%): By what % did you increase the efficiency of a process? By what % did you help reduce errors? By what % did you exceed your sales goals?

  • Numbers (#): How many employees did you manage? How many calls per day did you answer? How many offices/locations did you coordinate with on a project?

Note that sometimes it makes more sense to use the actual raw numbers, and in some cases, it makes more sense to show the change (year-over-year growth, change from before and after you took action to improve something, etc.). It will depend on how your industry or role typically reports or looks at numbers to determine success and growth, or it may be a matter of what looks more impressive.

Read More: How To Create a List of Accomplishments for Your Resume (With Tips)

Examples of improved resume statements

Review these before-and-after resume statement examples to see how to improve your own:

Example 1

Before: “Answered phone calls and provided excellent customer service to improve customer satisfaction.”

After: “Answered 100 calls per day and provided excellent customer service, helping increase customer satisfaction scores from 78% to 89%.”

Example 2

Before: “Organized and reviewed inventory to ensure efficient ordering, accurate reporting and lean spending.”

After: “Organized and reviewed inventory valued at $2M to ensure efficient ordering, accurate reporting (reduced errors by 25%) and lean spending (saved about $20,000 annually).”

Example 3

Before: “Audited reports to resolve discrepancies, improve accuracy and increase compliance with regulatory requirements.”

After: "Audited reports to resolve discrepancies, improve accuracy by 18% and increase compliance with regulatory requirements (avoided $15,000 in penalties).”

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