Employers looking to hire someone for a sales position want to see more than just a worker bee. Hiring managers are keeping an eye out for specific skills in the sales professional and those skills need to be highlighted in your resume to make a strong first impression. (Remember you only have about 6 seconds to grab the reader’s attention!)
Your sales resume should showcase your confidence and sales abilities. In other words, you need to start bragging shamelessly. After all, you are selling yourself with the help of your resume and if you don’t toot your horn, no one else will.
Here are 5 tips to make your sales resume stand out from your competition:
- Show the numbers
There is no better way to sell yourself to the employer than with cold hard numbers. Pack your resume with results. Everyone knows the duties of a sales professional, so skip the roles and responsibilities of your job description. Instead, tailor your resume so that it answers some of these questions:
- How much money did you save for the company?
- What quarterly percentage of sales did you increase?
- What was the client’s growth rate?
- How much new business did you bring in?
- What was the largest budget size that you handled?
- What size teams did you manage or train?
Numbers create an accurate image of your skills, capabilities, capacity, and strengths, giving the hiring manager a data-backed impression of how you handled different sales teams and projects, and the results you delivered.
- Get visual
Imagine a hiring a manager going through a pile of textual resumes. How do you grab attention when you have only a few seconds to make a strong impression? Here is where you leverage the advantage of visual aids.
Charts and graphs will not only make your resume vivid and distinct but also add clarity and style to your presentation. Include information such as quota performance, market share, client retention and revenue generation with visuals.
However, avoid making your resume look like an infographic. Add visuals only if they are relevant to the job role and to the employer.
- Highlight your Unique Selling Point (USP)
What are your unique skills and strengths that make you stand out? Include core competencies that you possess and back them up with large projects and tasks that you have handled. Success is tracked with quotas by most companies, so make sure you highlight your past achievements along with key sales strategies that you implemented to achieve your quotas.
Your resume should clearly communicate your client relationship style, your ability to close deals or increase the bottom line and why you would be an asset to the company.
- Get creative
Don’t be afraid to think outside the box. Experiment with different ways of showcasing your transferable skills and articulate your achievements for the sales position with strong action-packed statements.
Also, include your use of certain sales approaches or list the certifications and training that you have received.
Of course, as you would do with any new product or service, share your approach with former co-workers or mentors who can offer a fresh and critical perspective before you submit your resume to a potential employer.
- Know your audience
The most vital ingredient for your resume is to customize it for the position you are applying to. A large company will have different expectations from a sales professional than a new startup.
If you are applying to a large corporation you need to display your strengths of handling large teams and meeting sales targets. However, a smaller company may be more interested in knowing how you can help them compete in the marketplace and increase their bottom line.
You also need to make sure your resume meets the requirements of the job – pay special attention to the skills and competencies listed on the job description, and make sure to add highlight those in your resume. Most importantly, research the company to find out what challenges they are currently facing and demonstrate your ability to help overcome them.
Whether you have years of experience or are just starting out, using the above five tips will make your sales resume stand out from your competition, and help you land the interview!