Résumés depict the perfect work history for a specific position of interest. Time and time again recruiters tell applicants to target an open position with key words, matched job responsibilities and highlighted qualifications. This process will hopefully lead to an interview, and then a job offer, but it is often difficult to create a well-positioned résumé designed for success. Each professional has a different work history, most of which is not listed on a typical resume, that is preferred to be only one page. This one page document may contain all the pertinent information for a single position, but it doesn’t contain the entire work history of its owner which can be provided with an occupation inventory.
An occupation inventory is a document which contains each and every position held as well as each and every responsibility for those positions. This document has no limit length, no desired conditional formatting and serves a single purpose, to create a complete professional track record that can be utilized for any future position.
This occupation inventory serves to be a quick reference for résumé creation as well as allow its owner to recount their work history with ease. These previous positions can also provide insight into transferable skills that may have been previously missed. About.com describes transferable skills as, “…the skills you've gathered through various jobs, volunteer work, hobbies, sports, or other life experiences that can be used in your next job or new career. In addition to being useful to career changers, transferable skills are also important to those who are facing a layoff, new graduates who are looking for their first jobs, and to those re-entering the workforce after an extended absence.” Transferable skills are great for those looking to transition into a different career field, such as from finance to marketing.
To create an occupation inventory, it is best to start with a blank document, rather than an existing resume. Start by typing each company, position and time period on the document, then list each responsibility completed in each position. These responsibilities can be complete statements, or single words, remember to list items that were not included on the job description. If tasks or duties aren’t quick to come forward, utilize O*NET online’s ‘Occupation Quick Search’ engine. O*NET is an online job description dictionary; Graduate Business Career Services as well as LinkedIn profiles can serve as great references.
As each professional’s career path extends, so should their Occupation Inventory. Other items to consider adding to this document would include:
- References from each occupation that can serve as great resources for future employers
- Time periods as well as position changes that occur throughout organizations
- Major projects and accomplishments
- Committees and boards served on
This document is a reference tool to make applying, interviewing and networking much simpler. This guide can also serve to depict areas of growth or skill sets that may be missing. For more ideas on what to add to your Occupation Inventory see Graduate Business Career Services.