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Writing one resume can be difficult, let alone having multiple versions. Regardless of the pain factor, I recommend multiple resumes in some instances.

Just like different formats are better for different circumstances, it makes sense for some people to have multiple versions of their resume.

Why?

There are 3 reasons I can think that will likely make it easier/better for you to have multiple resumes.

Multiple Skill Sets

Let’s say you have extensive sales and management experience, but not necessarily in the same niche or channel as each other. It can be hard to showcase a vast skill set on a single resume. It should highlight your background as it pertains to each role. Your sales successes can get hidden behind the management roles and vice versa. Whichever role you apply for should have a resume version that makes the most of your relevant skills. Create separate resumes that each has more of a focus on one or the other skills.

Different Products/Channels/Niches

While some people in the building industry stay in the same channel and niche their entire career, some have more fluid careers. If you have worked with roofing materials, plumbing fixtures, flooring and fasteners and have sold to home builders, contractors, architects and 2-step distributors, you have a lot of experience. It can be difficult to make your career objectives clear so you don’t get lost in the pile.

Multiple Industries

Possibly, you have experience in different industries. Maybe you started out as a roofer and then became a builder and later moved into sales of roofing products. As part of your role, you were very involved in a new software implementation and decided to go into IT. You get the picture!

Managing Multiple Resumes Tips

Here are a few tips when using multiple resume versions:

-Bring the most important facts to the forefront and minimize, but don’t remove varied positions. You want to highlight some experiences and downplay others, but not eliminate anything pertinent.

-Consider having different resume styles – summary and chronological resumes could each have a place in your arsenal. Look at your experience and decide if having a version of each gives you better flexibility to highlight exactly what you want.

-Leave off early roles if the past experience has no bearing. If you worked at a hot dog stand in high school, it's probably irrelevant 25 years later. You can always explain past experiences in an interview if they have a bearing.

-Bunch together past roles if they are at the same company, are similar positions or are from the same time frame.

-Keep your resumes organized and separate with a naming convention. Either keep separate folders on your computer for each resume or make sure you clearly know what each resume is.

JohnDoeResume_Sales

JohnDoeResume_Management

JohnDoeResume_Distribution

Utilize multiple versions of your resume when it makes sense!

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