While it’s tempting to save time by preparing a single version of your resume and submitting it with every application, this is a highly ineffective way of making yourself stand out as a strong candidate. Unless you are applying for a low level job, such as labouring, you will most likely need several variations of your resume and cover letter, each customised for a specific type of job.
Often, the same job is advertised under several different titles.
Even though the essential information you provide will be the same for each application, it’s worth making some small edits to ensure that your resume responds exactly to the advertised position, using the same terminology and reflecting the specifics of the role.
Another thing to be cautious of is that job titles can sometimes be confusing (especially when the word ‘manager’ is involved). Before you apply, you should always make sure that you are clear about exactly what the role involves, and check whether or not you will be expected to manage other people.
For example, a Marketing Manager title can mean that you would perform common marketing tasks, or it can mean that you are supposed to lead a marketing team. ‘Officer’ roles usually do not involve managing other people, whereas if the job title includes ‘Director’ you will most likely be expected to lead a team.
Understanding these titles, and checking the specific details of the role, can save you a lot of wasted time and effort as you will be able to focus on the positions that are relevant to your experience level and skill set. It also helps you to tailor your resume by highlighting the most relevant skills and experience that make you particularly well suited to the advertised position.
Getting this right from the start helps you to spend your time on those positions that you are most likely to get, and to put together the strongest possible applications.