5 Accomplishments to Make Your IT Security Resume Stand Out

If you google “IT security resume template”, you’ll find a lot of resume models filled with roles and responsibilities such as:

  • Monitored all security alerts using RealSecure intrusion detection system.
  • Managed and performed security auditing and hardening processes on Apache web server (RHEL6).
  • Designed, configured and maintained network/security devices (Cisco ASA Firewall) and access lists.
  • Provided analysis on malware investigations on Windows platforms including servers, desktops.
  • Provided risk-related SOP’s for IT infrastructure in relation to low/high level security events.

That seems about right, no?

But there’s a problem. A huge problem, actually. Think of the information security professionals that you know. How many of them have done similar things? Probably most of them. Because that’s pretty much what being an IT security pro is all about. There are differences here and there, but roles and responsibilities will often overlap. So if your resume is very close to a typical “information security resume template”, how is that helping you get interviews? After all, the best resumes are distinctive. They make you stand out, not blend in!

So here’s a little something to help you make your resume stand out. It’s based on the 3 Laws of Resume Writing. And it’s not material that I made up. I found it by carefully studying good IT security resumes.

5 IT Security Accomplishments to Make your Resume Distinctive

  1. Trained several junior analysts on conducting network forensics and identifying hacking activity. (Training others talks about your leadership and also about your capacity to work on a team.)
  2. Created a process to identify new devices and alert the information security group within only 15 minutes of the device being connected to the network. (This new security measure sounds nice, and it’s a testimony to the employee’s desire to improve things.)
  3. Lead consultant for two large PCI-DSS compliance remediation projects, with a retail client (500 stores) and a restaurant chain (1200 locations). (There’s no real benefit written out here, but the large clients give that item a lot of credibility.)
  4. Saved $90,000 by implementing a process to reclaim licenses on the software used to grant root authority on Unix systems. (This isn’t focused on security or technical expertise, but it highlights business sense. All employers will be happy to hire someone that can save them thousands of dollars!)
  5. Personally assigned to several high visibility projects based on unique expertise with network forensics and malware. (This one says: “I’m reliable. People trust me.” The key part is “personally assigned.”)

The benefit is the key component of each accomplishment: improved operations, more money, demonstrated leadership and reliability, … Accomplishments like these are the most critical pieces of your resume. Now read that last sentence again, because that’s the best resume advice you’ll get this month.

If you’re a fantastic employee but your resume is silent on many of your accomplishments, you’ll end up behind a good employee whose accomplishments are all clearly laid out.

And for that matter, an average employee with weak accomplishments better know how to network, since the resume alone won’t pull its weight. (Actually, networking skills are critical to everyone’s job hunt. But I’m more of a resume guy, so let’s stick with the topic, if you don’t mind.)

Accomplishments are where it’s at. When you solve a problem, reduce costs, make something better/simpler/faster, when you show initiative, it has to be on your resume, without being drowned out by too much roles and responsibilities (i.e. the “we’ve-all-done-it” resume template material). In my view, half of the energy and time spent on your resume should be focused on your accomplishments. To write good accomplishments, you need to think of what your potential employer is thinking about (problems solved, better results, and so on) and emphasize that. If you go through 20 resumes of your peers, you’ll certainly find great accomplishments that you’ve done, but have forgotten to put on your resume. I truly believe that is a good use of your time.

Many More Accomplishments, Just for You

However, I’ve already done that research… The 5 ideas above are just a glimpse of the full list of accomplishments I’ve assembled. If you’d like that well-rounded, unique list of real-world information security accomplishments, for just a few dollars, check out our e-book, I.T. Security Resume Hacking, on Amazon. You can read it even if you don’t have a Kindle device.

5 Accomplishments to Make Your Nutritionist Resume Stand Out

If you google “nutritionist resume template”, you’ll find a lot of resume models filled with roles and responsibilities such as:

  • Analyzed menus and recipes for nutritional adequacy.
  • Maintain accurate records to be able to measure changes in patients’ nutritional status.
  • Developed nutrition education materials, handouts, and bulletin boards for target population.
  • Recruited patients for the Hispanic Diabetes Study.
  • Provided a continuing liaison with medical and nursing staffs regarding dietary services, procedures and recommendations.

That seems about right, no? But there’s a problem. A huge problem, actually. Think of the nutritionists or dietitians that you know. How many of them have done similar things? Probably most of them. Because that’s pretty much what being a nutritionist is all about. There are differences here and there, but roles and responsibilities will often overlap. So if your resume is very close to a typical “dietitian resume template”, how is that helping you get interviews? After all, the best resumes are distinctive. They make you stand out, not blend in! So here’s a little something to help you make your resume stand out. It’s based on the 3 Laws of Resume Writing. And it’s not material that I made up. I found it by carefully studying good nutritionist resumes.

5 Nutritionist Accomplishments to Make your Resume Distinctive

  1. Coordinated weekend and holiday schedules for clinical nutrition services for 30 dietetic interns.
  2. On a very tight budget, created menus offering healthy food choices to serve homeless women of [city].
  3. Kept services abreast of modern trends and developments by studying relevant publications and participating in lectures and grand rounds.
  4. Established a Weight Committee to include multidisciplinary involvement, resulting in weight loss statistics better than statewide averages.
  5. Grocery store tour at end of six-week course brought great comments from participants who often said it “opened their eyes.”

The benefit is the key component of each accomplishment: improved operations, more money, demonstrated leadership and reliability, … Accomplishments like these are the most critical pieces of your resume. Now read that last sentence again, because that’s the best resume advice you’ll get this month. If you’re a fantastic employee but your resume is silent on many of your accomplishments, you’ll end up behind a good employee whose accomplishments are all clearly laid out. And for that matter, an average employee with weak accomplishments better know how to network, since the resume alone won’t pull its weight. (Actually, networking skills are critical to everyone’s job hunt. But let’s stick with the topic, if you don’t mind.) Accomplishments are where it’s at. When you solve a problem, reduce costs, make something better/simpler/faster, when you show initiative, it has to be on your resume, without being drowned out by too many roles and responsibilities (i.e. the “we’ve-all-done-it” resume template material). In my view, half of the energy and time spent on your resume should be focused on your accomplishments. To write good accomplishments, you need to think of what your potential employer is thinking about (problems solved, better results, and so on) and emphasize that. If you go through 20 resumes of your peers, you’ll certainly find great accomplishments that you could adapt on your resume. I truly believe that is time well spent.

Many More Accomplishments, Just for You

However, I’ve already done that research… The 5 ideas above are just a glimpse of the full list of accomplishments I’ve assembled. If you’d like that well-rounded, unique list of real-world nutritionist or dietitian accomplishments, for just a few dollars, check out our e-book, Nutritionist Resume Hacking, on Amazon. You can read it even if you don’t have a Kindle device.

Get your Nursing Resume Noticed, with a Compelling Summary

The resume summary is a very rich section designed to quickly demonstrate you’ve got what it takes! Let’s look at two examples of very compelling resume summaries for nurses.

1. Highlights of resume for St. Joseph Hospital

  • Leadership qualities with experience as team leader of a busy downtown Emergency Department.
  • Board certified family nurse practitioner with 16 years of advanced practice experience caring for the adult and pediatric populations within the acute care setting and outpatient care environments.
  • Managed three outpatient programs, two of which became quite successful and well known throughout the State.
  • Active participant in quality improvement measures and staff trainings.
  • Member of the 2014 Hospital Accreditation Committee.

2. Summary for XYZ correctional facility

  • 4 years of experience as a registered nurse.
  • Strong clinical skills enhanced by natural ability to build rapport with patients and families.
  • Nurse in-charge on evening and night shifts in active Orthopedics Unit.
  • Participated in round table discussions with our medical director and other team members to assist in finding cost-effective medical care options.

The goal of the summary is to: 1. show you qualify and 2. build a strong first impression. And you do that very, very quickly, in a few bullets. Unless you’re very early in your career, you should mention how many years of experience you have. Also touch on the sectors or specialties you’ve worked in.

Make sure your resume summary is tailored!

Always remember the job ad when preparing your summary. Maybe you’ll see certain keywords in there that need to be emphasized. There’s no such thing as a good one-size-fits-all resume. It has to be customized. As I often repeat, accomplishments are the strongest elements of your resume, because they make you stand out from the nursing crowd. On your resume, you want as many accomplishments as possible. But in your summary, you have to choose a few that seem most relevant for the specific job you’re applying for. Which means that your summary repeats your key accomplishments. It’s a smart thing to be redundant with the most valuable info on your resume! A potential employer won’t mind that you insist on managing successful outpatient programs, or participating in discussions about cost-effective care options! If you write a strong summary using these tips, potential employers are much more likely to give your resume a good read. And that’s a necessary step to getting more interviews!

More tips for nurses

If you’re looking for more advice specifically for nurses, check out 5 accomplishments for your nursing resume. But if you feel like 5 isn’t enough, get the Nurse Resume Hacking e-book!

5 Accomplishments to Make Your Optician Resume Stand Out

If you google “optician resume template”, you’ll find a lot of resume models filled with roles and responsibilities such as:

  • Verified that finished lenses are ground to exact specification.
  • Heated, shaped or bent plastic or metal frames to adjust eyeglasses to fit clients, using pliers and hands.
  • Repaired damaged frames.
  • Measured customers appropriately for single vision, bifocals and progressives.
  • Placed orders to various frame distributors and ophthalmic lens laboratories.
  • Attended the New York International Vision Expo every year.

That seems about right, no? But there’s a problem. A huge problem, actually. Think of the opticians that you know. How many of them have done similar things? Probably most of them. Because that’s pretty much what being an optician is all about. There are differences here and there, but roles and responsibilities will often overlap. So if your resume is very close to a typical “optician resume template”, how is that helping you get interviews? After all, the best resumes are distinctive. They make you stand out, not blend in! So here’s a little something to help you make your resume stand out. It’s based on the 3 Laws of Resume Writing. And it’s not material that I made up. I found it by carefully studying good optician resumes.

5 Optician Accomplishments to Make your Resume Distinctive

  1. Provided supervision to all staff members, including training of apprentice opticians.
  2. Highest average sale per transaction in my office.
  3. Implemented monthly recall of patients, which raised daily number of store visits by 15%.
  4. Corrected problems in workplace safety and security by implementing and maintaining new company policies and procedures.
  5. Managed and scheded 500+ patients.

The benefit is the key component of each accomplishment: improved operations, more money, demonstrated leadership and reliability, … It’s even better when you can put a number to it. Accomplishments like these are the most critical pieces of your resume. Now read that last sentence again, because that’s the best resume advice you’ll get this month.

If you’re a fantastic employee but your resume is silent on many of your accomplishments, you’ll end up behind a less impressive employee whose accomplishments are all clearly laid out. And for that matter, an average employee with weak accomplishments better know how to network, since the resume alone won’t help much. (Actually, networking skills are critical to everyone’s job hunt. But let’s stick with the topic, if you don’t mind.)

Accomplishments are where it’s at. When you solve a problem, reduce costs, make something better/simpler/faster, when you show initiative, it has to be on your resume, without being drowned out by too many roles and responsibilities (i.e. the “we’ve-all-done-it” resume template material). In my view, half of the energy and time spent on your resume should be focused on your accomplishments. To write good accomplishments, you need to think of what your potential employer is thinking about (problems solved, better results, and so on) and emphasize that. If you go through 20 resumes of your peers, you’ll certainly find great accomplishments that you could adapt on your resume. I truly believe that is time well spent.

Many More Accomplishments, Just for You

However, I’ve already done that research… The 5 ideas above are just a glimpse of the full list of accomplishments I’ve assembled. If you’d like that well-rounded, unique list of real-world optician accomplishments, for just a few dollars, check out our e-book, Optician Resume Hacking, on Amazon. You can read it even if you don’t have a Kindle device.

Business Manager Resume Hacking

If you’re a business manager looking to improve your resume, this book is just for you! And we mean just for you. All the examples in here are tailored for managers; we actually went through many of your peers’ resumes, to identify what made the best stand out. This is what you’ll find in this guide: the most relevant material from resumes of various managers. Since “business manager” is a broader title, this book covers a bit more ground than the other books in the Resume Hacking series. That being said, our examples are all about management, leadership, projects, business strategy and so on, sometimes touching on IT, HR, marketing or operations.

It’s not a comprehensive resume guide by any means; there’s already tons of generic resume advice out there. Our e-books are quite short (around 3000 words), but straight to the point, because they have a single purpose: helping you make your resume distinctive. We do that by providing you stuff that is both highly valuable and uncommon in your field.

Our goal is to help you get more interviews, through a “do-it-yourself-in-one-afternoon” resume hacking guide.

GET IT NOW, on Amazon.com!

And if you don’t have Kindle, it’s not too complicated.

Best Practices for your LinkedIn Headline

Headlines are made to draw attention. And social media is filled with over-promising headlines, because they get people to click. (Not you, I know. You’re much too smart for that. But other people do click on silly titles, like: “7 Breaking Bad tactics to get an interview TOMORROW!”)

Your LinkedIn profile also has a headline, with that very real potential of drawing more clicks from recruiters. Seriously. Recruiters use LinkedIn to search for potential candidates. They will very quickly assess your photo and headline in order to decide if they click through or move on. Because they have a lot of ground to cover. That’s why your headline is critical… (Part of what I call the Big 3 of LinkedIn first impressions).

Through the best practices to LinkedIn headlines, presented below, I’ll share some critical tips gathered from 7 experts on the web. By “experts”, I mean professionals who wrote a relevant book or are trusted voices in the job search sphere.

What do experts agree on? (Best practices)

1-Your headline is an important piece of your LinkedIn profile. Take the time to craft it well.

2-Your headline needs to be punchy. It needs to attract readers. And there’s a lot of room to do better than the default “Web developer at Widgets.com”.

3-Use keywords as building blocks for your LinkedIn headline. This is the part where you “seduce” LinkedIn’s algorithm. In other words, you choose optimal words (according to what recruiters are likely to search for) in order to please LinkedIn’s search engine. Each word in your headline carries a lot of SEO weight. (It’s also true for the words in your job titles.)

3_best_practices_linkedin_headline-2

What do they disagree on?

They only disagree on minor stuff.

1- The definition of “personal brand”. Louise Fletcher argues against personal brand: “As you build your LinkedIn profile, remember that recruiters don’t give two hoots about your ‘personal brand.’ They only care about whether you fit the criteria for the position they are currently trying to fill.”

On the other hand, Meg Guiseppi has an entire article on making your personal brand visible on Linkedin. When she discusses the headline, she says: “Pump it up with the relevant key words your target audience will be searching for.”

I think they fundamentally agree on the basic ideas, but Fletcher associates “personal brand” with buzzword-filled headlines. However, as we’ll see below, Guiseppi is also adamant about strictly using meaningful keywords, as opposed to buzzwords such as “professional” or “results-oriented”. Because no recruiter ever searches for those.

2- Using capital letters on most words. Most experts seem to write LinkedIn headlines as they would a newspaper headline, i.e. capitalizing most words. Only two experts seem to have a more distant relationship with the Shift key. And I tend to side with them, but that probably stems from my French side.

Overall, the disagreements are hard to notice. No one, for instance, says that LinkedIn headlines are secondary. Now they each have a specific angle, obviously. For instance, some put more emphasis on the benefits (“What’s in it for me?”/value for the employer) while others encourage you to make the most of the 120 characters allowed in the headline.

Key excerpts about LinkedIn headlines, with examples

Brian Howard, executive recruiter and author, The Motivated Job Search

On the CareerCloud podcast, Howard talked about what he wants to see in a headline. And he says that even on a resume, he likes to be “punched in the nose right away” with a strong headline. Here’s his suggested structure:

Title or functional title… Specializes in/expert in… Industry, area or knowledge

Louise Fletcher, resume writing chief, Blue Sky Resumes

When I write LinkedIn headlines for my clients, I focus on summarizing their story clearly and succinctly. So for a sales executive in the entertainment industry (the profession discussed in the post) I’d prefer to see something like this:

Sales executive with 15+ years in the entertainment industry | ABC, NBC, Sony Music & Warner Bros | MBA, Wharton

This headline tells a recruiter all he needs to know to click through and learn more … and it does it without being icky and boastful.

Meg Guiseppi, C-suite executive job search strategist, Executive Career Brand

To maximize your LinkedIn professional headline, make it SEO-friendly. That is, include the most important relevant keywords recruiters and your target employers will be searching for, when they’re sourcing top talent. […]

Improving your headline doesn’t mean loading it with anemic phrases like “results-oriented”, “hands-on” and “forward-thinking”. […]

CEO, COO, President – Global Manufacturing Turnaround Management – Lean | JIT | Demand Flow Technology

You can pack quite a punch with the 120 characters allowed. Use as many of the characters as you can, while keeping the headline comprehensible.

Donna Serdula, LinkedIn and executive branding expert, LinkedIn Makeover

Notice how they are keyword-packed for search engine optimization, contain a benefit statement so people know what they can expect from working with them but they also contain a clear call to action. […]

Founder & CEO ★ Injection Molding ★ Design & Prototyping & Product Design & Development ★ How Can I Help You?

Experienced Sales Professional Looking to Positively Impact a New Organization ★ Prospecting ★ Closer ★ Let’s Connect!

Joshua Waldman, author, Job Searching with Social Media for Dummies

Your message has to be about them and how you can solve their problem. […]

Your headline needs to very quickly label you as a certain type of person, i.e. Sr. Level Exec versus line manager. […]

Sr. Director of Operations Specializing in Asset Tracking and Compliance | Former Naval Officer and Six Sigma Blackbelt

It’s easy to get too clever with your headline. Remember that recruiters on LinkedIn are using keyword searching to find new talent. So the use of keywords out-weighs being cute.

[In another article, Career Enlightenment offers 2 cool examples of creative headlines:]
Early Childhood educator with 8 years of experience taking your children off your hands and molding them into angels. You’re welcome.

The Mercedes Whisperer, 20 years of specialized Mercedes auto mechanics.

Donna Svei, executive resume writer, Avid Careerist

After recruiters look at your photo, your LinkedIn headline is the next item they scan in their search results. Because of this, an effective, professional headline plays a critical role in convincing a recruiter to click through. […] 70% of LinkedIn members use the default headline (Current Job Title and Current Employer)…

Proofread your headline. Nothing says, “Don’t click through,” to a recruiter more than misspelled words. I lied. Misspelled names are worse than misspelled words. Ask Bbob. […]

Capitalize appropriately. […] Weird capitalizations make recruiters worry that the person wears stripes with plaid.

[She even suggests to add click-bait to your headline, with the idea of “what’s in it for them?”, as in her example:]
CEO/President | Fortune 1000 | Sales Background | Double-Digit Sales & Earnings Growth

Susan P. Joyce, online job search expert, job-hunt.org

The Professional Headline also accompanies your name and photo in your LinkedIn Group activities and other LinkedIn visibility. […]

Using the right words (like the keywords in the job title of the job you are targeting) will increase the probability that your Profile will appear in a recruiter’s search for someone with those skills. […]

Strategic/Product Marketing Analyst w/5 Years in Consumer Products (B2C): Market Assessment and Competitive Positioning

* * *

As a side-note, if you want pretty bullets to separate each item in your headline, you can simply copy-paste from the following:

♥ ✦ ★ ✻ | ▪ ✱

(If, for some weird reason, you want bullets of umbrellas or scissors, you can find a ridiculous amount of other glyphs here.)

Now put on your marketing hat and write your own headline!

Resumes (and LinkedIn profiles) are often described as marketing material. And you’re the product being sold. While you can feel a bit grossed out by this analogy, the job search is really a promotional process. As a marketing and communication professional, I’ve seen many parallels between marketing books and resume books. (Differentiation, discuss needs and value from the audience’s perspective, concision, avoid having too many messages…)

So if you’ve ever dreamed of being a Mad Men-type copywriter, here’s your chance, in 120 characters. (And remember… keywords, not buzzwords.) Use the above best practices and tips from LinkedIn experts to write a captivating, click-generating headline!

 * * *

Enjoying this?

How about a free visual guide to help you with your job search?

2_pages_visual_plan-4

Check it out!

5 Accomplishments to Make Your IT Manager Resume Stand Out

If you google “IT manager resume template”, you’ll find a lot of resume models filled with roles and responsibilities such as:

  • Oversaw support of all VMWare, Linux, UNIX, EMC SAN, Cisco Nexus, Oracle and SQL applications.
  • Built an onsite/offshore QA/performance team to enable round-the-clock support for releases testing.
  • Negotiated and managed SaaS contracts including Microsoft Office 365.
  • Partnered with executive peers to create IT three-year strategic plan and budget, which included capital project and ongoing expenses.
  • Introduced performance checklist, test plan, strategy and results templates.

That seems about right, no?

But there’s a problem. A huge problem, actually. Think of the IT managers that you know. How many of them have done similar things? Probably most of them. Because that’s pretty much what that job is all about. There are differences here and there, but roles and responsibilities will often overlap. So if your resume is very close to a typical “IT manager resume template”, how is that helping you get interviews? After all, the best resumes are distinctive. They make you stand out, not blend in!

So here’s a little something to help you make your resume stand out. It’s based on the 3 Laws of Resume Writing. And it’s not material that I made up. I found it by carefully studying good IT manager (and director, project manager…) resumes.

5 IT Manager Accomplishments to Make your Resume Distinctive

  1. Directed relocation of data center from managed service provider to [redacted] co-location facility in San Diego, along with a technology refresh, resulting in 60% ($65K/month) cost savings. (Obviously, when so much money is saved, your job and salary are fully justified, and employers will want you on their team.)
  2. Relocated large data center with only 120 days notice, which included leasing location and design/management of build out. The highly successful relocation resulted in only 20 hours of downtime to the organization and no impact to customer shipments. (Here, we see the capacity to work under pressure and we can guess that there was a lot of hard work to meet that goal. From the employer’s perspective, these are valuable assets.)
  3. Orchestrated IT implementation for new campus build-out encompassing 7 buildings, up to 700 staff members and a data center. (This accomplishment isn’t directly tied to a clear benefit, but the fact that there are 7 buildings and 700 staff members gives a sense of breadth to the implementation. Measurable results add to your credibility.)
  4. Managed server consolidation including HP blade server deployment in conjunction with Citrix and VMware implementation,

    achieving 20% annual savings. (Again, direct bottom line impact is always a positive, concrete result. As a manager, you should have a few examples of financial impact on your resume. An approximation is better than nothing.)

  5. Received the company’s first “Award of Merit” in recognition of rapid expansion of IT systems and support to align with unanticipated business growth. Shortly thereafter was promoted

    to vice president. (Awards and promotions are a clear testimony to the value that previous employers saw in you. While a resume is generally perceived as biased, awards seem objective and trustworthy.)

The benefit is the key component of each accomplishment: improved operations, more money, demonstrated leadership and reliability, … Accomplishments like these are the most critical pieces of your resume. Now read that last sentence again, because that’s the best resume advice you’ll get this month.

If you’re a fantastic employee but your resume is silent on many of your accomplishments, you’ll end up behind a good employee whose accomplishments are all clearly laid out.

And for that matter, an average employee with weak accomplishments better know how to network, since the resume alone won’t pull its weight. (Actually, networking skills are critical to everyone’s job hunt. But I’m more of a resume guy, so let’s stick with the topic, if you don’t mind.)

Accomplishments are where it’s at. When you solve a problem, reduce costs, make something better/simpler/faster, when you show initiative, it has to be on your resume, without being drowned out by too much roles and responsibilities (i.e. the “we’ve-all-done-it” resume template material). In my view, half of the energy and time spent on your resume should be focused on your accomplishments. To write good accomplishments, you need to think of what your potential employer is thinking about (problems solved, better results, and so on) and emphasize that. If you go through 20 resumes of your peers, you’ll certainly find great accomplishments that you could adapt on your resume. I truly believe that is time well spent.

Many More Accomplishments, Just for You

I’ve already done that research… The 5 ideas above are just a glimpse of the full list of accomplishments I’ve assembled. If you’d like that well-rounded, unique list of real-world IT manager accomplishments, for just a few dollars, check out our e-book, IT Manager Resume Hacking, on Amazon. You can read it even if you don’t have a Kindle device.

5 Accomplishments to Make your Lab Technician Resume Stand Out

If you google “lab technician resume template”, you’ll find a lot of resume models filled with roles and responsibilities such as:

  • Completed identification of bacteria, parasites, fungi and viruses.
  • Investigated atypical results and discrepancies to determine causation.
  • Obtained blood samples for medical testing and transfusion through venipuncture and capillary puncture.
  • Prepared chemical solutions, reagents and specimens for microscopic examination.
  • Performed quality control and calibration on many analyzers: Architect, Coulter LH 750, Beckman Coulter and UF-1000i.
  • Microbiological analysis of drinking water for coliforms, entero, and HPC.

That seems about right, no? But there’s a problem. A huge problem, actually. Think of the lab technicians (or even medical technologists) that you know. How many of them have done similar things? Probably most of them. Because that’s pretty much what being a lab tech is all about. There are differences here and there, but roles and responsibilities will often overlap. So if your resume is very close to a typical “lab technician resume template”, how is that helping you get interviews? After all, the best resumes are distinctive. They make you stand out, not blend in! So here’s a little something to help you make your resume stand out. It’s based on the 3 Laws of Resume Writing. And it’s not material that I made up. I found it by carefully studying good lab tech resumes.

5 Lab Technician Accomplishments to Make your Resume Distinctive

  1. Developed and implemented a maintenance schedule for instruments, computers and analytical balances, which significantly reduced incidents of unplanned maintenance.
  2. Ensured test-result validity before recording/reporting results, earning a reputation for meticulous attention to detail.
  3. Expertly performed preventive maintenance and troubleshooted $600,000 in laboratory assets (Sysmex 1000, MLA Stago, Abbott C4100C, and refrigerators), saving $25,000 in contract repair fees.
  4. Responsible for keeping the laboratory up to the code of the Association for Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care.
  5. Coordinated staff training on proper medical waste disposal.

The benefit is the key component of each accomplishment: improved operations, more money, demonstrated leadership and reliability, … Accomplishments like these are the most critical pieces of your resume. Now read that last sentence again, because that’s the best resume advice you’ll get this month. If you’re a fantastic employee but your resume is silent on many of your accomplishments, you’ll end up behind a good employee whose accomplishments are all clearly laid out. And for that matter, an average employee with weak accomplishments better know how to network, since the resume alone won’t pull its weight. (Actually, networking skills are critical to everyone’s job hunt. But let’s stick with the topic, if you don’t mind.) Accomplishments are where it’s at.

When you solve a problem, reduce costs, make something better/simpler/faster, when you show initiative, it has to be on your resume, without being drowned out by too many roles and responsibilities (i.e. the “we’ve-all-done-it” resume template material). In my view, half of the energy and time spent on your resume should be focused on your accomplishments. To write good accomplishments, you need to think of what your potential employer is thinking about (problems solved, better results, and so on) and emphasize that. If you go through 20 resumes of your peers, you’ll certainly find great accomplishments that you could adapt on your resume. I truly believe that is time well spent.

Many More Accomplishments, Just for You

However, I’ve already done that research… The 5 ideas above are just a glimpse of the full list of accomplishments I’ve assembled. If you’d like that well-rounded, unique list of real-world lab technician accomplishments, for just a few dollars, check out our e-book, Laboratory Technician Resume Hacking, on Amazon. You can read it even if you don’t have a Kindle device.

Presenting Your PE, CPA or MBA Title on LinkedIn

How do you deal with a professional designation or certification on LinkedIn? After all, you did spend an awful lot of time and coffee on getting that recognition. LinkedIn doesn’t really have a specific place for it next to your name, so they encourage you to put your MBA, CPA, PE or other title in the same field as your last name.

This will make sure that your title appears clearly in search results, which already gives you a comparative advantage over other people with the same title but unaware of this little trick.

But that’s not enough!

If you do have such a title, you’ll need to make sure your profile also includes a “Certifications” section. I suggest you put it right before or after your Education, as you see fit. This makes LinkedIn understand that you do have that title and it will qualify you if recruiters or potential clients use that title as a search criteria. (If you just put MBA in your last name box, LinkedIn doesn’t “compute” that. You need to show it under “Certifications”.

Do you know about the Projects section for your profile?

And while you’re updating your profile, did you know that there’s a “Projects” section? I know that a lot of engineers and accountants, for example, work on huge projects, where they’re part of a multi-disciplinary team. That’s precisely what this section is for.

You can obviously name the project and describe it, but you can also connect team members to it (obviously, through LinkedIn) and provide a link, if there’s a relevant document or website you wish to present as a portfolio piece. I think it’s a nice touch that adds depth to your experience, especially if you have a link (PDF of a sanitized executive summary, maybe?).

5 Accomplishments to Make your Finance Resume Stand Out

If you google “finance resume template”, you’ll find a lot of resume models filled with roles and responsibilities such as:

  • Manage budgetary and investment decisions for laboratory.
  • Managed insurance programs.
  • Calculate and monitor strategy performance in compliance with GIPS to multiple investment performance databases (eVestment, Morningstar, iShares).
  • Accountable for portfolio’s performance and client relationship.
  • Responsible for marketing [Bank] product and generating new business.

That seems about right, no?

But there’s a problem. A huge problem, actually. Most finance professionals with whom you’ll be competing will have similar roles and responsibilities on their resumes. Planning, making financial models or analyses, budgeting… These tasks are pretty much what working in finance is all about. There are differences, as it’s a wide field, but roles and responsibilities will often overlap. So if your resume is very close to an average “finance resume template”, how is that helping you get interviews? After all, the best resumes are distinctive. They make you stand out, not blend in!

So here’s a little something to help you make your resume stand out. It’s based on the 3 Laws of Resume Writing. (Accomplishments, accomplishments and accomplishments!) And it’s not material that I made up. I found it by carefully studying the resumes of various banking, investment and insurance pros (focusing on the best ones, of course!).

5 Finance Accomplishments to Make your Resume Distinctive

  1. Two separately managed account strategies out-performed the S&P 500 in 2012 and 2013 by an average of 250 to 300 basis points annually. (When a sector’s indicators are so easy to measure, it’s imperative to use them to demonstrate the value of your work.)
  2. Grew business from $0 to $3 million and distinguished the firm as a leader in providing valuable management consulting and financial advisory services to major energy enterprises. (Growing a consulting business that much isn’t possible with one or two lucky sales pitches. This accomplishment speaks volumes about the candidate’s drive, relationship building skills and overall capabilities.)
  3. Implemented and designed the structure of the financial software for the company. (Leadership of a project, especially when it’s a first within the company or team, brings a sense of initiative and dynamism, which resonates strongly with employers.)
  4. Raised $3 million in working capital for a $14 million nursing home company (prepared offering book, developed financial structure and closed at favorable rates). (In a field like Finance, bottom-line impact will often create the most compelling achievements.)
  5. Recruited, hired, mentored, and led a core team of six managers. (Here, we see both leadership and management, since managing staff means setting priorities, getting people to work as a team, coaching, having tough discussions… The list goes on.)

The benefit is the key component of each accomplishment: improved operations, more money, demonstrated leadership and reliability, … Accomplishments like these are the most critical pieces of your resume. Now read that last sentence again, because that’s the best resume advice you’ll get this month.

If you’re a fantastic employee but your resume is silent on many of your accomplishments, you’ll end up behind a good employee whose accomplishments are all clearly laid out.

And for that matter, an average employee with weak accomplishments better know how to network, since the resume alone won’t pull its weight. (Actually, networking skills are critical to everyone’s job hunt. But let’s stick with the topic, if you don’t mind.)

Accomplishments are where it’s at. When you solve a problem, reduce costs, make something better/simpler/faster, when you show initiative, it has to be on your resume, without being drowned out by too many roles and responsibilities (i.e. the “we’ve-all-done-it” resume template material). In my view, half of the energy and time spent on your resume should be focused on your accomplishments. To write good accomplishments, you need to think of what your potential employer is thinking about (problems solved, better results, and so on) and emphasize that. If you go through 20 resumes of your peers, you’ll certainly find great accomplishments that you could adapt on your resume. I truly believe that is time well spent.

Many More Accomplishments, Just for You

However, I’ve already done that research… The 5 ideas above are just a glimpse of the full list of accomplishments I’ve assembled. If you’d like that well-rounded, unique list of real-world finance professionals accomplishments, for just a few dollars, check out our e-book, Finance Resume Hacking, on Amazon. You can read it even if you don’t have a Kindle device.