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4 resume tips for career changers

By Jana Angeles

Job security is a large concern during a pandemic and with the COVID-19 outbreak affecting individuals worldwide, industries such as hospitality and entertainment are going through a tough period to keep doing “business as usual” with events getting postponed and cancelled, and the shift towards takeaway and home delivery orders for restaurants and cafes. 

You may be someone that has been working in the hospitality industry and likely out of a job given the current economic circumstances. In times of economic crisis, it’s worth exploring other career options and expanding your skillset and knowledge to help secure a role in another field as hospitality work becomes a less than viable option during the COVID-19 outbreak.

There’s a likely chance that you’re keen to take on a career change during this time, and one of the best things to do right now is to give your resume the update it deserves. The tips below may provide you with further insight on how you can tailor your resume during a career change. 

1. Your first impressions count.

office woman working on laptop

Your resume and cover letter are the tools needed to help secure a job interview, however, the end goal is to get the attention of the employer to look at your application in the first place. 

By providing a clear insight into your work experience, skills, qualifications and achievements, you’re making your first impressions count when it comes to your resume. Understandably so, your resume is a document that highlights your best qualities as an employee, so outline any relevant skills that you have which best match the job you’re applying for. 

Think about how you can tailor the roles you’ve resprised in the past and use keywords that are relevant to the industry you’re wishing to change to. If you find that you have knowledge and skill gaps, you may want to explore flexible options to study online with a course provider like Upskilled, where you have the opportunity to study qualifications in business, community services or IT. 

2. Recognise your transferable skills and tailor them to the job description.

Martin Yate, Author of book Knock ‘em Dead: The Ultimate Job Search Guide, says, “Transferable skills are ones that apply in all professions. They are the foundation of all the professional success you will experience in this and other careers you may pursue over the years.”

It’s true that transferable skills can be applied in other roles and are known to be “universal”. If you're in the midst of a career change, it’s important to recognise your transferable skills and how they relate to the job outside of your field of expertise. 

This means writing tailored information in your resume and focusing on your skills rather than the specific job roles you’ve worked in the past. You need to be strategic with how you write a resume so it’s best to write a skills-based resume rather than one that outlines your entire job history. Focus on the skills that make you a great candidate. 

Here are some transferable skills you could outline in detail:
  • Teamwork
  • Leadership
  • Communication
  • Analytical skills
  • Personal development

3. Highlight your study achievements.

education concept

One of the key things that you can highlight in your resume is the qualifications you’ve studied. Studying a course is a great way to kickstart your career, especially if you’re looking to make the switch to a different industry. If you’ve outlined all your current study achievements but find that most of the job roles you’re applying for need a related qualification, you may want to consider studying a course and ideally, something that allows you to be flexible with your schedule. 

Giuliano Maritan is one of Upskilled’s alumni students and after working many years as a chef in the hospitality industry, he had a strong desire to change careers and work in the HR field. He quickly recognised that the only way to do this was to study an HR qualification. He says, “I believe that to place yourself as a professional in a different industry, there is no other way but to study for it.”

By studying the BSB41015 - Certificate IV in Human Resources with Upskilled, this allowed Giuliano to explore and get familiar with HR concepts and knowledge that could help him start a career in HR. 

Highlighting your study achievements in your resume can be a powerful tool that can help increase your chances of securing a job interview. In addition to this, you can still add a qualification even if you’re in the middle of completion. By showing employers that you’re working towards building relevant industry knowledge and skills, it can help highlight your potential to be a worthy job candidate. 

4. Be prepared to rewrite your current resume. 

Changing careers means you cannot use the same resume you used five years ago, so you’ll need to do some surgery work on it before you start putting yourself out there for potential employers. Starting fresh and re-working what you already have in your resume is worth the time and effort. If you’re serious about changing careers, highlight your experience and skillset in the best light. 

It’s worth asking the following questions when you begin rewriting your resume and evaluating what sections you need and the ones you can do without:
  • Is it relevant?
  • Does this piece of information add insight to who I am to the employer? 
  • Am I using keywords that resonate with the job description?
  • Are my career objectives clear and concise?
  • How can I improve sections without adding too many buzzwords?

Let Upskilled help you change careers

If you know that studying a qualification can help you transition into a different career, consider studying a course with Upskilled. With a variety of qualifications to choose from, you can build skills and knowledge in the industry of your choosing all online

From business to IT, studying with Upskilled means that you have the flexibility of sticking to a study schedule that suits your lifestyle needs. Get in touch with an education consultant and make a course enquiry today by calling 1300 009 924
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