New Grads: Why You Should Update Your Resume, Even If You’re Not Job-Hunting

National Experts in Resume Writing & Career Coaching

New Grads: Why You Should Update Your Resume, Even If You’re Not Job-Hunting

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Congratulations to those of you who have successfully managed to find employment following graduation! Even though there’s peace of mind knowing you’re now employed and beginning the journey of your first job after college, it’s wise to take the time to continue to update and maintain your resume.

According to studies, including one conducted by LinkedIn, it has been found that new grads over the course of history changed jobs more frequently than those with a longer work history. The numbers show the most drastic changes in jobs occur within the first five years after graduation and the rate has increased in recent years.

So, what does this all mean to you as a professional who is just starting out? There’s a good chance you’ll be switching jobs as well at the starting stages of your career and that you should be ready for that switch by keeping the resume updated and ready if needed.

Young professionals may choose to change jobs more frequently during the early stages of their career for various reasons. It may include the need to:

  • Test the waters to see what is right
  • Move up the ranks more quickly
  • Better pay
  • Better opportunity that comes along (including internally)

If you’re working in a certain industry (Media & Entertainment, Professional Services, or Government/Education/Non-Profits), the LinkedIn study indicated professionals in these fields are even more likely to switch jobs within the five-year period after graduation. In some cases, it may even lead to an entirely new career.

So, with these typical trends in mind, here are ways in which you can help keep your resume updated and ready to go. The good part is it really doesn’t take much time to keep the resume updated. You don’t need to continually work towards a finished piece, but it is advised to at least have points in place so that you know where you can highlight and expand on new experiences and skills on your resume for when the time comes. Keep track of updates to add to the resume, and remember to:

  • Document dates of employment and changes to job title.
  • Document your key accomplishments on the job.
  • Write down new skills gained and how they’ve been used on the job.
  • Make note of awards received on the job that recognize you as professional or new certifications.
  • Add new educational degree received, such as an MBA.

With these simple and frequent updates to the resume, you’ll be ready to restart the job hunt as needed. Consider putting it on your schedule to check up on your resume every six months or earlier, and adding updates as necessary.  With these strategies, you won’t need to spend as much time in a rush to append your resume before the beginning of a new job hunt. An updated resume can also help you reflect on major successes to highlight when it comes time for the performance review.

For more tips to resume writing, also read: “Ways New Grads Can Fine-Tune the Resume to Land the Job.”