In the job search process, your résumé is often the first impression you make on potential employers. It’s your chance to showcase your skills, experience, and achievements to stand out among applicants. But how do you ensure your résumé catches the hiring manager’s attention and lands you an interview? One effective technique is framing.
Framing is the art of positioning your experience and achievements to highlight your strengths and emphasize the value you can bring to a potential employer. By framing your résumé strategically, you can differentiate yourself from other candidates and increase your chances of getting hired.
Build your storyline
It’s common for interviewers to ask job seekers to expand on topics found in their applications, as they are receiving many similar looking résumés. To get ahead, you can creatively present this information to immediately differentiate yourself from the crowd. Think of it like building a storyboard. Each scene, and the order in which they’re shown, shapes your professional story.
To put it another way, it may be helpful to approach it through the lens of the recency effect, which suggests that people remember the last thing they see or hear the best. Depending on your goals, consider placing your skills section closer to the top or even before your experience section. For example, if you have relevant work experience for the positions you’re applying to, place your “Skills” section at the end of your résumé so it remains top of mind. Conversely, if you’re looking to break into a new field, placing this section closer to the top makes more sense.
In addition to the traditional “Skills” section, there are other creative ways to showcase your experience and interests. Consider creating a “Skills and Projects” section highlighting consulting or freelance work or a “Skills and Interests” section showcasing your professional passions. Reframing your job duties as accomplishments is another way to make your resume more persuasive. Rather than simply bullet point listing your responsibilities, focus on quantifiable achievements, such as exceeding goals or managing budgets. By using numbers and statistics, you make your accomplishments more tangible and demonstrate your level of responsibility and expertise. For example, instead of saying “managed budget,” specify the impact of your work, the percentage by which you exceeded your goals, and the amount of money you managed or saved.
The fine line in effective framing
Effective framing doesn’t mean stretching the truth, however. As earlier alluded to, framing is a simple construct but requires critical thinking. Dazzling yourself into a role that ultimately doesn’t fit the big-picture goals you (and your employer) are hoping to achieve will only get you back to square one. To ensure you’re putting your best foot forward, using framing to align your skills with and showcase your long-term goals can be a powerful tool for success in the interviewing process.
The best part about framing your résumé is Concentric has dedicated recruiters that are there to help you tell your story. We don’t require cover letters or other sales techniques to get you in the door, we get to know you and understand your needs to help you land your dream job.
How to strike a balance
- When presenting your skills and experience, balancing confidence and arrogance is crucial.
- Avoid generalities like “I can sell anything.”
- Avoid overstating your qualifications. For example, if you assisted on a project, don’t take full credit; instead, explain your role and contribution to the team.
- Do not dodge “weaknesses” or “failures.” Frame them as learning experiences or areas for growth. “Pobody is nerfect,” as Pam from the Office would say.
When preparing for an interview, analyzing the job description and the language used carefully is beneficial. This can provide insight into underlying traits that the employer is looking for and how you can frame your skills and experience to align with their goals. Remember, effective framing is a skill that takes practice, but with the right mindset and approach, you can successfully showcase your talents and secure your dream job.
Need a prep talk?
Concentric’s core goal is to build valuable connections between companies and candidates so all parties can grow toward sustainable success. By fostering transparent conversations and trusted referrals, Concentric welcomes and engages individuals into our community, offering opportunities for career advancement in the information and technology sectors.
To do that, our recruiters work with job seekers directly to establish their goals. This individualized approach means providing interview prep, practice sessions, and even defining those “next five years” if they’re a bit murky—the entire job search, with all the personal experiences— at no cost to the candidate.
Concentric specializes in Senior level and Executive IT and Tech Staffing for the following areas:
- infrastructure engineering
- data engineering and intelligence
Connect with our team today to learn how partnering with Concentric can take your career to the next level.
Connect with Clarity for positions outside of tech
Concentric’s sister company, Clarity Search, teams up with business owners and managers nationwide to create connections between top-tier accounting, finance, and marketing professionals.