Is Age an Issue or Just a Number?
Many of our more seasoned clients ask our writers during the consultation if age is an issue for their resume. Many job-seekers express worries about how to put across a lengthy, valuable career without giving away their age.
These clients are passionate about their work and excited to take on new challenges. They obviously have a desire to stay in employment for a significant period of time. And what is more, they have the skills and experience to do so. But they are convinced their age is a factor that could ruin their hopes of an interview. So, what are the facts of the matter?
Say it Without Saying it
You will only make your age an issue if you allow it. The key thing to remember is to make it a positive. This begins with editing your resume. A few minor resume updates can go far in changing hiring managers’ preconceived notions of antiquated skills, or fixed thinking.
Your contact details should be succinct, easy to find on the resume, and professional. Still got an AOL account? Forget it. It automatically ages you. Get yourself a Gmail, Hotmail, or Yahoo email account. But don’t fall into the easy trap and put your birth-date in it – JohnSmith1965@gmail.com is a bit of a giveaway! Put just one phone number, preferably your mobile number. Many people are abandoning landlines for more portable contact means.
Your social media status may not be exactly vibrant, but it may be beneficial to create a LinkedIn account and put a link in your resume. LinkedIn is a highly effective professional networking space that could serve your needs well.
Be Brutal with the Length of the Resume
If your experience stretches back 30 years or more in one industry, there is likely to be some repetition. Decide on a good cut-off point – say 15 years – and then just add a paragraph covering your prior experience. This will give you room to go into detailed description of your recent employment, your main responsibilities and key achievements. Besides, there is a danger of repetition which is a sure way of invoking reader-fatigue, so this will help you immeasurably.
Forget your interests or hobbies. Unless they are directly relatable to the position or underscore your professional experience – no-one is interested.
Leave out the year you qualified if your certification was taken at the start of your career. It is quite OK to just put the degree, university, and location.
These tips will help keep your resume short and to the point and will not make age an issue on your resume.
It Is Your Passion That Will Win the Day
Once these areas are taken care of, you can now focus on the cover letter as an excellent space to underline your commitment to taking on a new long-term opportunity with the company you are interested in. This is a good chance to speak to why you are passionate about joining the specific company. With this approach, the reader will be able to focus on your value proposition rather than your age. Your updated resume will be an impressive document that highlights your achievements and contributions. That first impression will carry you through to the interview and beyond.