There is no shortage of resume tips and tricks online or in books and magazines. Many of these recommendations can be helpful, but there are important things to remember when targeting your resume specifically for an SAP position. Before continuing your SAP job hunt, consider the following.
Working with Staffing Companies:
Staffing companies that recruit for SAP positions want someone who has been consistently employed in one or a few specific areas or modules. To be a sought-after SAP contractor, you will need a minimum of three years of experience, preferably on at least two separate projects, but one may suffice for lower-paying positions. If you do not yet have this experience, read this post about breaking into an SAP career. When working with a staffing company, the most common way SAP consultants are hired, keep the following in mind:
- A staffing company is not trying to find you a job, they are trying to find the right candidate for a job opening.
- Now is not the time for a career change. With so many candidates who already have the skills needed to perform a job, they don’t want someone who says, “I don’t have any experience yet, but I can learn quickly.”
- It is imperative to tailor your resume for specific job positions. Oftentimes recruiters are far from experts in the field for which they are hiring. The more one-to-one matches they can make between the job requirements and your resume, the better.
- Recruiters are not career counselors. If you want career advice, talk to colleagues and other SAP professionals.
Because IT is a fast-paced industry, recruiters want to see that you have current, expert-level skills that you draw upon on a regular basis. For this reason, chronological resumes are the best. List your experience in reverse chronological order with your most recent engagement first. For SAP consultants, a two-page resume should suffice. Provide the most detail about recent positions and the least detail about your first position.
- Don’t include your hobbies. Nowhere is your love of French cuisine or classical guitar less relevant than when you are applying for an SAP position.
- Include an objective statement. Without stretching the truth, make sure that your objective reflects the job requirements.
- Include all SAP modules and the versions you have worked with.
- Don’t rely on spellcheck. Who do you know with the best spelling and grammar skills? Ask that person to review your resume.
- Quantify your achievements. Did you write one Functional Requirements Specification document or 10? Did your project team support a user group of 150 or 15,000?
- Explain uncommon software. For example, listing “SPSS” means nothing to most recruiters. Instead, say, “Experience with SPSS (statistical analysis software).”
- Use bullet points to summarize your experiences. Consider including keywords to introduce each bullet point, such as “Training: Developed and delivered course curriculum for SAP CRM to 300 employees of XYZ corporation.” Recruiters scan, they DO NOT READ. They especially do not read large blocks of text. To see how recruiters look at resumes, check out this article from The Ladders.
- Make sure your contact information is current. Setup your voicemail to include your name so recruiters know they have the correct number for you. Make sure your email address itself is professional. A variation of your name, i.e. firstname.lastname@XYZ.com, is appropriate. SoftballGurl87@XYZ.com is not.
Cover Letter Tips:
- Write one! End of story.
- Don’t repeat what your resume says.
- Don’t talk about how this position would help you achieve your career goals. Instead, address how your experience would benefit the company.
- Include the exact title of the job, the job requisition number, if available, and where you saw the job posted. Recruiters handle hundreds if not thousands of job postings, they need to know exactly what you are applying for.
- Never exceed one page.
- Don’t mention any weaknesses you have.
Do you have any other tips you think should be included in this list? Are there mistakes you’ve made in the past and now regret? Share them in the comments below!