How to Write a Targeted Resume in 2023 (with templates and examples)

It’s no secret that searching for a job can become a full-time job. 

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, finding a job can take an average of 22.5 weeks. 

But in a time like now, when the market is highly competitive, and layoffs are so frequent, most people can't wait that long to find a role. 

Because of this, it is so crucial for job seekers to take their search seriously and do everything they can to stand out and get hired for not just any role but the right role. 

A targeted resume is a great place to start if you’re ready to get specific with your job search in 2023. Below, we’ll dive into what a targeted resume is, who should use it, how to create one, and even showcase templates and examples to help you in your process. 

Let’s dive in!

What is a targeted resume? 

A targeted resume is a carefully crafted document designed to showcase your skills and experience directly related to the job you are seeking. It is structured to ensure the reader’s eyes are immediately drawn to the essential qualifications and experience for the position. 

Crafting a targeted resume requires an intricate understanding of industry-specific keywords, as well as an in-depth knowledge of how one’s work history and transferable skills fit into a given role.

If done correctly, it can be a powerful tool for landing interviews at top companies.

Who should use a targeted resume?

Targeted resumes are helpful to a variety of different job seekers. 

If you’re an experienced professional with skills that could apply to multiple roles in various fields, it’s an excellent option. 

A targeted resume is beneficial if you’re a career pivot that needs to showcase specific elements of your previous jobs or education. 

Or, if you’re applying for a dream job that has a large number of applicants and is highly competitive, a targeted resume can increase your chances of being seen. 

A targeted resume allows flexibility in your job search when you need it most. 

Why do you need a targeted resume?

Because most job seekers only create one resume and send it out to every potential employer, a more targeted approach can be a differentiator. 

Not only that, but when employers see that you took the time to tailor your resume to meet their needs, they will gain confidence in your commitment level. Customizing the ideal targeted resume template is easy and can significantly increase your chances of success.

Targeted resume template

Later in this article, we’ll go through all the appropriate steps that we suggest you take when creating a targeted resume. However, if you’d like to make a resume in minutes with the help of custom templates, we highly recommend signing up for Teal’s Free Resume Builder.

Teal can help you create a resume from scratch and can help you individually create targeted resumes for each job you save and apply to within the tool. Click on the button below to get started today!

How to create a targeted resume

Now that you know what a targeted resume is, why it’s essential, and who should use one, let’s dive in and learn how to create one.

1.) Identify the types of jobs you want to apply to

This is a discovery process! Below, we’ll outline all the questions you should be asking  yourself when you first start your job search. Think of all the jobs you’ve done in the past and write down your thoughts.

Questions you should ask include...

  • Were there some roles you liked more than others? 
  • What did you like the most about each of them? 
  • What were your day-to-day activities for each role?
  • What types of roles align with your experience? 
  • What roles have you yet to have but feel confident you can do well? 
  • What industries have you worked in? 
  • What industries did you like the most? 
  • What industries have you never worked in but have always wanted to try? 
  • Do you have any passions outside of work that you could explore professionally? 

After reviewing the answers to these questions, identify two or three roles in the most exciting industries that relate to your answers above and you’d like to apply to. 

2.) Study the common job descriptions for each role

Now that you’ve identified your target roles, it’s time to do some research! Use LinkedIn Job Search, Indeed, or another job board to analyze the standard job descriptions of the positions you plan to apply to. 

Note the expected skills, responsibilities, and qualifications that descriptions repeatedly mention. Add these common keywords into separate documents for each job to save for future reference. Once you’ve looked at 10-20 job descriptions for each role and collected all the consistent resume keywords, you can start to customize your resumes. 

3.) Customize specific areas of your resume

If you already have a resume created, you can take your original document and use it as a starting point.

From there, you can copy that original resume document and create 2-3 versions that you will tweak and use interchangeably based on the roles you apply to.

The primary areas where you’ll want to tweak your specific knowledge are in your profile summary and resume achievements. But depending on your experience, your education section, or if applicable, tools, projects, and certification sections are worth tweaking. This is where you should add some of the answers to your initial questions and some of the common job description qualifications, skills, and responsibilities that you pulled during your research phase.

The tweaks don’t have to be massive but should be enough to help you show that you're an expert in a specific area.

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Targeted resume examples

Below, you’ll see two examples of resumes targeted to two unique job types. They are both somewhat similar, but in the profile/summary section, skills section, and resume achievements sections, you’ll notice that different experiences are showcased.

The first example is a targeted resume for product marketing manager roles.

The second example is a targeted resume for content marketing leadership roles 

How to write a targeted resume fast 

Spending time creating multiple targeted resumes seems daunting, but as technology has evolved, more platforms have popped up to streamline the process. Teal’s Resume Builder is one of the best tools that can assist you with building a top-notch resume. 

With Teal, you can store your entire job history in one place, making it easy to build a targeted resume. The resume builder also has features like career insights and an Achievement Assistant to strengthen your resume. With Teal, you don’t need just to have 2-3 targeted resumes. Instead, you can have a tailored resume for every job you apply to. 

Sign up for a free Teal account today to see the tool in action!

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Alli Tunell

Alli Tunell

Alli is a tech marketing strategist with 10+ years of experience. Currently, Alli works as a Senior Growth Marketing Manager at Teal. After dealing with far too many frustrating job searches herself, she has found so much joy in helping other job applicants win in a challenging market.

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