Much advice is given about resumes. What to include, what not to, say one thing one way and not the other. A popular piece of wisdom is to list achievements and not just what you did. If you want to make an even bigger impact and go deeper than just your achievement you can add the use of numbers. Numbers can quantify what you did and what sort of value you brought to your company and what you could bring into a new job. Here are some ways you can use numbers to catch a potential employer’s attention.
Follow the Money
It’s all about the bottom line. Companies are always trying to do things less expensively for greater profit. If you can describe with numbers how you saved your company money in a certain way, you’ll be one step closer to that job offer. List your achievements, but with each one get more specific. Explain how you led a team of a certain number of individuals to greater productivity in their sales and marketing which resulted in a certain number of increased profit. The key is to be specific.
Another important factor whenever you use numbers, not just with money, is to have other quantifying numbers. Maybe you helped your company increase sales but over what length of time? This creates a fuller picture so that the person looking over your resume has more background.
Wasted time is wasted money, so use numbers to explain how you saved time or managed time well. Maybe you cut down on production time by implementing a more efficient process. Be able to explain that with numbers. Other than money, time is one of the things companies are always trying to use better. If you can share how you saved your company time in your specific area, you’ll grab their attention.
Maybe it’s not time or money for you. How you help your company may be a bit more nebulous. You can still use numbers even if that’s the case. Did you help to grow a team or complete a certain number of projects? Those are numbers that you can use to your advantage still.
You may not know exactly what that number may be. That’s not a problem. If you can estimate or give a range, that will help. If you write, “Fielded 10-15 calls from XYZ company a week,” that’s still better than not having a number at all. Make sure you’re not giving an unrealistic picture with your numbers, though. Also, consider what your numbers are conveying to the person reading your resume. Will they expect you to work in that same way and accomplish those same results? If that’s not what you want, then be careful what numbers you put down. You want to make sure you can deliver what you are inadvertently promising.
Numbers grab the attention of the person looking over your resume. Leverage those to the best of your ability to stand out from the stack even more.