Over the past decade, resumes have played a increasingly important role in the hiring process, even though companies insist they hire people, not resumes). The problem has only been exacerbated by the current economic condition, though it is improving.

The new role of the resume has caused job seekers to have to make significant changes to their job strategy, and has also changed the ways recruiters must operate in order to move candidates through the process. It is no longer good enough for a recruiter to have spoken with a candidate and explain to the hiring company – often in painstaking detail – exactly why the person is a fit for the position.

It is also the recruiter’s responsibility to ensure this information is easily accessible on the candidate’s resume. Even with this time and effort, many candidates are rejected because the hiring manager did not see the experience on their resume. If the person who is tasked to hand over qualified resumes to the hiring manager cannot clear the “resume hurdle”, it becomes even more important that you detail out your most important attributes on your resume and customize it for each position for which you apply.

In short, if it is not on your resume (and easy to find), it never happened. Hiring managers are inundated with resumes and are under the false assumption that there is an endless supply of qualified candidates. As a result, they have been reticent to spend too much time or struggle too much to read between the lines of a resume.

Even if everyone in the room knows that 1+1=2, in today’s market it is the responsibility of the job seeker to spell out the equation and leave nothing to chance.

So, spell it out. If you are applying for a company that requires oncology experience, highlight your oncology experience in detail (even bold the appropriate key words). If the company is looking for someone with 2+ years of HPLC experience, make sure HPLC references are abundant throughout your resume – in the summary, in the highlights, under training and in each job where you used it.