You see a position that you think you’d be a great fit for. You look at the job description, mentally checking off where the required skills align with your own…and then you see something listed that you simply don’t have experience with. What now? Some will tell you that you may as well not even bother, but if a small qualification is all that’s between you and a great job, you can take a few steps to remedy the situation:
Accentuate the positives.
Focus on the 85 percent of the skills you do have for the job by putting them front and center on your resume – specifically, in a skills summary at the top so they stand out immediately. When writing your work history, play up job duties and achievements that utilized those same skills. You may even consider creating a “T” cover letter, with the required skills on the left side and your qualifications on the right, matching them up to show how and when you have met or gone beyond what your employer wants. And make sure you have your skills listed on your LinkedIn profile under the Skills section (and see if you can get fellow LinkedIn connections to endorse them for you).
- In preparing for the interview, be ready to answer questions about your skills and how you have used them, as well as how you would use them in the position you’re interviewing for.
Eliminate the negative.
You can’t get around not having a skill, but you can strongly make the point that you’re working on it currently. In your skills summary on your resume, write that you are “actively acquiring abilities in X” so those skills register on the keyword software that many companies use to weed out underqualified resumes. Next, make that statement true: Before the interview, learn as much as possibe about that skill using YouTube instructional videos, reading informational articles, and putting the skill into practice, if practical.
- So now, when you go to the interview, you can demonstrate your knowledge on, and plan of action for, the missing skill, and you’ll sound like you have a working knowledge of it.
These tips can certainly help you, but it also helps to remember in the end that if you’ve done all you can and still don’t get hired, those doing the hiring may simply want exact qualifications, and that’s out of your control. Doing as much as possible and demonstrating learned and applied knowledge can still show an interviewer your work ethic and determination to do well, and that may land you the job. For additional help with crafting this sort of resume and finding the right fit for you, go to PrideStaff and work with their qualified staff.