Insights for Remote Professionals

How to Customize Your Remote Work Resume

Cedric Jackson

August 19, 2021

No matter the type of job you want, you need your resume to stand out from the competition.

Part of this involves slightly tweaking your resume for each job. That should be in addition to the tweaks you made to show your remote work skills. 

Discover some of the most important tips to help you customize your resume for remote jobs.

Read the Job Description Carefully and Apply Your Knowledge

The most important tip is that your resume should speak directly to the company that you're applying for.

So, before you start adapting your resume, take the time to read the entire job description thoroughly.

This will confirm that you want to apply for the job and that you’re qualified. It’ll also give you insight as to the type of adjustments you need to make in your resume so that it really speaks to the employer.

You want to take the information you get from the job description and incorporate it into various parts of your resume.

From the cover letter to the statement at the top to your skills, emphasize what the job asks for. 

Everything in the job description is important. That being said, the most important things to note include:

  • The qualities the employer wants (such as “detail-oriented” or “excellent written communication skills”)
  • The tools the employer wants proficiency in (such as Adobe, Photoshop, Basecamp, Trello, and G Suite) 
  • The instructions in the ad (some will have specific instructions to weed out candidates)

If you can’t get enough information from the job description, do more research. Look at the company’s LinkedIn page or website. 

Customize the Job Title

Your resume will feature a job title that you’re looking for. Make sure that this matches the phrasing used in the job description. 

Highlight the Right Skills

You should already be highlighting your skills for remote work in your resume.

Things like great communication and self-starting are some examples. You can learn more about critical remote work skills here.

Go back to the list of qualities that the employer wants in an applicant. Try to show that you have these skills. Just remember not to lie, as that reflects worse on you. 

Include the Company and Job Title as Well

As you craft your skills section, consider highlighting the company and the job.

For example, you can mention how the skills will help you in the role. Only do this if you can incorporate it smoothly. 

Highlight the Right Tools

Do the same thing you just did with your skills to your knowledge of various tools.

You probably already had a list of remote tools you are proficient in. Adjust this, so the ones mentioned in the job description are at the top. 

Click here to learn more about which tools are critical for remote work.

Highlight Relevant Interests and Activities 

Experts commonly suggest adding a resume section on your interests and activities. This helps add personality. There is some debate about what to include.

Some say only to include relevant activities. Others say you should include more than that without going overboard. The latter stance is more common with remote work. 

After all, companies offering remote work tend to want employees to have a work-life balance. They want you to have passions outside of work. 

As always, remember to keep out activities that are political, religious, or controversial. The only exception is if they directly relate to the role. 

Craft a Personal Value Proposition

Apart from the cover letter, your personal value proposition is one of the easiest parts of the resume to customize to a job. This should be at the top of your resume. 

You want this to be clear and concise. Let it showcase your strengths, focusing on those mentioned in the job description.

Let the company know how they will benefit from hiring you. 

Create the Cover Letter Carefully

The cover letter is one part of your remote work resume with the most customization opportunities. 

Start by mentioning how you found the position and what it is. This is clearly highly customizable to the position. 

Then connect the role with your experience. Combine that with your skills and proficiency in tools that you already mentioned in the resume. 

Use Keywords Throughout

Most companies rely on Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) to start eliminating resumes.

An ATS is software that looks for certain keywords in your resume. If you don’t have them, you’re eliminated. 

This means that you need to include keywords related to the job.

To get the keywords, look through the job description. Look at all of the experience and skill requirements as potential keywords.

You can also get keywords from the company’s website and LinkedIn page. 

Just make sure that you don’t overuse keywords. You still want your resume to look and sound natural. 

Remove Irrelevant Experience

A simple way to customize your resume is to remove experience that’s not relevant to the job you’re applying for.

As a bonus, it helps you keep your resume short and manageable to read. That prevents decision-makers from getting bored or overwhelmed while reading it. 

While it's arguable, we really love one-page resumes. They're very easy to scan, and they show that you're able to package up a lot of information into a small amount of text. (A skill that's crucial for remote work!)

Most importantly, always proofread your resume before sending it. 

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