I would recommend searching for them not in your CV, but in the job requirements that are most commonly met for the position you wish to occupy. Still, they should consist of a professional and technical skills mentioned, primary duties, achievements, specialization, extra trainings, some terms, names of the interconnected areas, products/services, maybe slang words and buzzwords typical for the industry, colleges you studied in, names of your target companies, and, finally, area codes (only if known). Be aware that keywords must be nouns, no adjectives or verbs are appropriate, in this case.
HINT: Always collect the pack of vacancies you would like to apply for to mix and select the most frequent conditions out of them. Your buzzwords have to serve your employer’s purpose. In other case, you’ll be just another little frog in a big pond. ONLY THEN YOUR KEYWORDS WILL WORK!
Let me specify each group by providing some examples.
· Professional skills are crucial for executive positions like manager or CEO. They can be subdivided into the career fields:
a) Accounting area: P&L, balance sheet, income statement, budgeting, AP and AR, data analysis, account management, general ledger, audit, etc.
b) Web-designer, graphic artist, web developer: multimedia, portfolio, project management, designer, illustration skills, etc.
c) Administration or management: business development, R&D, policy & procedures, performance evaluation, risk management, operational management, leadership, contract negotiations, etc.
d) Office manager or secretary: customer development, office administration & management, office equipment, database administration, data processing, invoices, incoming calls, front-end operations, building maintenance, etc.
e) Construction or engineering: project management, supervision, Autocad, safety & security, inspection, subcontractor management, time-scheduling, planning, electrical/reliability/chemical/project engineering, manufacturing, mechanical, materials science, fluid mechanics, linear integrated circuits, technology;
f) Sales Representative: B2B, B2C, customer service, product/service promotion/distribution, aggressive marketing, customer interaction, networking, advertising, commercial, sales cycle, strategic sales, top sales recognition, usability features, marketing basis, etc.
g) Hotel personnel: hospitality, front desk, occupancy rate, languages mentioned, trade shows, convention management, food & beverage, B.S.;
h) HR: training/orientation/coaching, federal/department rules and regulations, recruitment programs, KPI, performance development, labor relations, employee orientation, EEO regulations, etc.
i) Judiciary/legal environment: law office, litigation procedures, legal researching & writing, emergency response system, benefits eligibility & determinations, congregate housing, medical billing & transcription, etc.
j) PROCUREMENT/PURCHASING/INVENTORY: backorders, JIT, loss & damage, cash control, import and export, production, supply chain operations, tariffs, claims, and rates, estimators, planners, developers, integrators;
k) Medical area: amino acid, bioorganic, catalysis, HPLC, kinetics nucleosides,
photochemistry, structure fluoridation, process Development, first aid, etc.
· Technical skills: in 90% cases they mean computer skills, so here we go with the commonly demanded PC skills to include in the keywords: accounting software (i.e., Lotus 1-2-3, QuickBooks Pro), software presentation, adobe photoshop, illustrator, web, Java, HTML, file formats, web palettes, BidNet interface, CAM, VM, CMS, JCL, REXX, UNIX, CAD, ISO Auditor, HVAC Distribution Systems, Microprocessor/Microcontroller Systems, IT/IS
Technician, Database Management Systems, Hardware & Software Troubleshooting, CoralDraw, VPN, Internet/Intranet, local hosting, Web Applications, Web Server Administration. It is strongly recommended to skip MS Office and OS names like “Windows 7.” It is plain as a pikestaff.
· Personal qualities are not that important, but in the case a lot might depend from some of the individual features, you may add a couple of them: analytical and judgment thinking, no need for supervision, team player, strong leadership, self-motivated, ability to implement.
· Basic job duties are better to be selected in the following way: look for several desired vacancies, combine their requirements and job responsibilities, add them up as the keywords. For instance, you’re applying for a registered nurse. Let’s find out the best keywords for your resume that are offered: clinical expertise, internal and external physicians/providers, health care disciplines, interpreting clinical scenarios. Aren’t they great?
· Achievements and certificates also should be filtered carefully. Most probably your employer won’t be interested in your Arts honors if you’re applying for a certified accountant, financial analyst or reliability engineer. On the whole, your achievements-related keywords should look like: Certificate Program in Accounting, CMA, CPA, CFM, CGFM, EA, CFP. They are all interrelated in the aspect of accounting and finances.
· In all other cases better to include education-based keywords: B.S., BBA, MBA, bachelor of science, A.A.S. Mind that educational diplomas and degrees obtained are not the same as additional courses or advanced trainings rewards.
· You can even mention a few core subjects if your degree matches the target job: international marketing, business policies, economics of developing countries; history of art, graphic design, IT; biology, physics, chemistry, psychology, etc.
· Divide all your professional and technical skills gained into two more categories: profile and supporting (extra). They might look like: skills analysis, automatic tools, user support, equipment measurement & control, design realization, optoelectronics, event marketing, material forecasting, one-call sale, technical maths & physics skills, trend analysis, results analysis, DCF, presentation skills, line-item accounting, process improvement, policy development, etc. It’s up to you to decide which to include. However, we would recommend turning for help to some professionals.
· You can add all the areas you are able to work for if they have a lot in common: accountant, auditor, financial analyst, bookkeeper; journalist, freelancer, copywriter, editor; marketing manager, PR director, sales manager; registered nurse, nurse, medical assistant, intern, babysitter.
· Recall the product/service name or organization’s title: Mary Kay, children clothing, women’s shoes, New York Times, Google engine, Sony Records, McDonald’s, Happy Meal, Nestle, CDs, DVDs, Thai massage, beauty salon, software installation, cooking, tourism, etc.
· Point at the main job responsibilities you used to face at the similar workplaces and your experience in years: 10 years of related manufacturing experience, OEM, vendor, 4 years sales experience, negotiations participation, contract signing, financial modeling, forecasting using financial tools, assisting physicians, help desk assistance, system maintenance & upgrades, client relationship building, work with documentation, proofreading, etc.
· You may classify keywords by location if it is a matter of principle for you: Dallas, Man, NY, California, District #, zip code #.
· Finally, some business slang is recommended to prove your professional awareness and experience: sales funnel, SAM, SBU, scorecard, SMART goal (for sales); collateral, teaser, CTA, standfirst (for copywriting); dipsters, hamstring, UAD, Winnie Sox, ace of spades (used among IT staff).
Of course, there are keywords that suit all positions. You just have to cut them out:
achieved, accomplished, acquired, acted, compiled, challenged, committed, communicated, contributed, decided, developed, discovered, demonstrated, devoted, drafted, exercised, expected, earned, entered, experienced, explained, facilitated, focused, figured, fit, functioned, grouped, gave, generated, handled, improved, identified, inspired, implemented, interpreted, informed, judged, launched, led, mastered, managed, modified, met, measured, motivated, multiplied, maximized, moved, noticed, operated, observed, oversaw, organized, obtained, oriented, participated, proposed, persuaded, perceived, processed, performed, passed, prioritized, provided, presented, procured, placed, received, rewarded, revised, responded, restored, rejected, reinforced, reduced, replaced, retrieved, ran, raised, reached, save, settled, separated, sent, selected, simplified, staged, standardized, stimulated, supported, took, targeted, uncovered, undertook, verified, valued, visited, worked, weighed, welcomed
NOTE THAT YOU DO NOT HAVE TO FOLLOW THIS SPECIFIC ORDER WHILE CREATING YOUR KEYWORDS LIST. However, it is still better to put the most valuable words in the beginning. The last keys are often missed.