(Even if You're Not Actively Seeking Employment)

Life (and the job market) is constantly changing, and a new, exciting opportunity could arise at any moment. Dr. Vanessa Claus, CSU Global Senior Faculty Associate of Human Resources Management and Career Center Coach, shares why updating your resume is paramount – even if you're not actively searching for a job. 

Since you last opened your resume, you've most likely been recognized and promoted, had your roles and responsibilities modified, or sought professional development opportunities. Thus, especially in today's uncertain economic times, keeping track of these key career highlights, accomplishments, and awards is exceptionally important.

As I highlighted in my previous blog on The Most Important Steps to Take if You're Laid Off, a recession may be looming. You’ve likely seen organizations starting to make cutbacks. On March 10, 2023, GM offered buyouts to most U.S. salaried workers to trim costs. These employees, who may have been in their roles for many years, were likely shocked about these buyouts.

According to Eva Chan, CPRW, a Resume Genius writer, "You should update your resume every time you obtain new hard and soft skills, certifications, or major work or volunteer experience that are relevant to the career path you want. If you don't have time to maintain your resume regularly, try updating your resume every 3-6 months." I argue, especially presently, that your resume should be updated even more frequently.  

To Ask for a Raise or Promotion

For many people, asking for a raise can be a daunting task. Updating your resume to highlight key accomplishments, metrics, roles, and responsibilities is essential. Preparation is critical when asking for a raise, and refreshing your resume will allow your organization to see your recent achievements. Within your resume, demonstrate how the scope of your responsibilities might exceed your initial job description duties. Furthermore, your resume should highlight activities you have engaged in that have benefited the organization. By providing up-to-date information on your resume, you can make more of a case for why this raise is necessary.

To Track Your Accomplishments

Your resume and LinkedIn are great places to keep a running list of achievements. Accomplishments can be qualitative or quantitative and do not only need to be related to your role. Include any nonprofit/organizational leadership experience, personal development activities, etc. Tracking your accomplishments using some of the recommendations shared in this article will make updating your resume a breeze.

To Attract Recruiters

LinkedIn is a great job search and recruitment resource. According to Jobscan, approximately 95% of U.S. recruiters are on LinkedIn. Updating your LinkedIn account to reflect career-related highlights, work status, and accomplishments can help make you visible to recruiters. Your LinkedIn content should be keyword-optimized, specific, include measurable achievements, and be complete (i.e., all profile sections are filled out and updated regularly). For more information about attracting recruiters on LinkedIn, explore this resource.

To Be Prepared in Case of a Layoff 

Fears of an incoming recession are high, and some economists believe we have already entered one. During recessions, it is common for layoffs to occur. While there are various ways to protect your job during a recession, preparing for life's "what if?" moments is also essential. An Insider article recommends updating your resume by completing writing exercises, focusing on a solid summary section, updating your skills, and tailoring your resume to each job posting. While we cannot prevent layoffs from occurring, we can help ourselves by updating our resumes for those "what if" moments.

CSU Global Can Help

Creating a strong, updated resume can be a daunting process. Luckily, CSU Global has made the resume development process more accessible. Did you know that Global Connect (free to current students and alumni) offers access to free resume templates? Furthermore, you can have your resume professionally reviewed by our faculty members, who are qualified resume reviewers. While exploring Global Connect, check out our additional career resources and services.