10 signs you need to update your resume

Megaphone with resume language written all over it.
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In a perfect world, you'd treat your resume like a living document and update it continuously throughout your career. In the real world, family, home and professional responsibilities can get in the way. Here are 10 events that call for a resume refresh.

In a perfect world, you'd treat your resume like a living document and update it continuously throughout the year, making changes and additions each time you successfully completed a project, nailed a huge sales goal or switched to a new role within your company. In the real world, however, family, home and professional responsibilities can get in the way. However, not keeping your resume up-to-date can deter hiring managers and recruiters from starting conversations about new opportunities.

If it's been a while since you've refreshed your resume and you want to be ready in the event a new opportunity presents itself, Andrew Ysasi, president of Admovio and an executive career consultant and resume writer, offers 10 signs you need to make changes.

1. You've received an award

Did you receive a performance, sales, innovation or other type of merit-based award? How about a community award for volunteer work, or for non-work-related accomplishments? Make sure you add these to your resume with a short explanation of the criteria for selection and what skills and knowledge you relied on to win.

2. You've completed a large, important project

Did you and your team design, develop and build a killer new app for a client -- ahead of schedule? Have you recently found ways to reduce cost or increase speed-to-market for your company? Have you hit major sales goals, or achieved great customers service? These are all areas current and potential employers focus on when considering whether to promote you or when searching for candidates.

3. You've started a new initiative -- or business unit, or branch, etc.

If you've created a working group to handle a new line of business, been instrumental in successfully organizing and opening a new branch office, or even created an informal community at work -- say, for working moms; or a hiking club, add that to your resume. It shows you're a team player, able to multi-task and juggle multiple aspects of both work and life seamlessly.

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4. You have a new boss who's an executive or a senior manager

If the reporting structure at your organization has changed, it can be important to note this in your resume, especially if you now report to a C-level executive or another member of IT leadership. For example, if, as a software development manager you report directly to a CIO or a CTO, mentioning that on your resume can demonstrate that your insight, experience and knowledge are often solicited by IT leadership, and that you can provide valued advice to the C-suite.

5. Your address, phone number, email or other personal information has changed

This is a bit of a no-brainer, but it bears repeating: If you've moved, changed your name due to a marriage or divorce; gotten a new mobile or landline phone number or switched to a different email address, update your resume immediately. You don't want to miss out on that dream job because a recruiter or hiring manager can't reach you.

6. You've completed additional education or achieved a certification

Congratulations. You're now a CCNA, or a CISSP, or an MCSE, or a Scrum master. You worked hard to graduate cum laude from that MBA program, or to graduate first in your class from that coding boot camp. Now, update your resume as soon as possible -- while it is still fresh in your mind -- to take advantage of the new opportunities and potential for earnings growth that education can provide.

7. You joined a new professional association

If you recently joined a new professional organization (like the IEEE or a similar group), make sure you include this information on your resume. Affiliations with professional organizations shows potential employers that you're keeping up with trends and news in the industry and that you're willing to participate in discussions around how to improve your field.

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8. You're volunteering with a new nonprofit

Volunteer work is a major selling point when you're looking for a new position, in addition to just being a great way to give back to your community and the world at large. If you don't already volunteer, consider doing so.

9. You've joined a new association or nonprofit board

Serving on the board of a new association or a nonprofit can show that you're a great team player who's invested in prominent companies or nonprofit organizations that are giving back to the community. It's an honor to be asked to sit on a board, so don't forget to add this to your resume.

10. You've received performance feedback

What can you do with your latest performance feedback? Don't let it languish, unseen, in a file cabinet or on a hard drive -- add relevant information to your resume; accomplishments, achievements, initiatives, teamwork, skills-building and the like can have a major impact on your market value. Consider, too, having your supervisor write a LinkedIn recommendation based on this feedback.

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