You’ve probably heard about the various ways to improve your resume so that it can be moved to the top of the talent pool instead of the top of a trash pile. One way that has been suggested in more recent times is the use of keywords, especially with advancements in technology that can capture and categorize resumes based on the keywords used.

This is a practice not only common with entry-level and managerial resumes, it also works extraordinarily well with executive resumes. You just have to know how to manage the keywords you use properly. Let’s look at how you can get this done …

Choose Scanning Technology-Friendly Keywords

One key aspect of using the right keywords for your executive resume is choosing the ones that work well with scanning technology. Many companies nowadays are using scanning technology as a sort of screening tool to determine who appears to be qualified for the position. The catch with the use of this technology is that it plays upon how many times you list certain keywords throughout your resume. In other words, you may be highly qualified for a position but because you didn’t use the right keywords your resume may not get a second look.

You don’t want this technicality to result in your application being turned away at the front door, which is why it’s good to consider using words that work well with this technology. Some words and phrases used at the executive level might include the following: strategic planning, performance optimization, P&l responsibility, budgeting and finance, corporate administration, new business development, crisis management, profitability improvement, and world-class organization. Of course, the words need to fit into the context of the statement you want to make. But the more keywords you use in the proper context, the better your chances are of being picked up by this special technology.

Remember that One Keyword Can Tell an Entire Story

As you’re thinking of keywords to use in your executive resume, it’s a good idea to remember that each keyword you choose will tell an entire story – if you choose the right ones. For instance, if you choose the keyword “strategic planning” it is assumed that you have a great deal of experience in creating strategies to help move the company in a new direction.

If you use the keyword “sales” the person hiring may assume that you have experience with negotiations, product/service presentation, and customer relation management. So as you make your selections, you want to make sure that you’re telling the right story to help prepare the message you want to deliver.

Where to Incorporate Keywords

If you’re wondering where you should incorporate your keywords, a few places to consider include in the Career Summary at the beginning of your resume and within your Job Descriptions. Also, you might consider creating a section titled Executive Qualifications that focuses more specifically on your qualifications in relation to the more important keywords.

As you work on tightening up your resume, it’s a good idea to always keep in mind just how important it is to incorporate the right keywords throughout. If you manage this part of the resume-writing process carefully, you will very likely end up with a resume to die for.

Author's Bio: 

Heather Eagar is a former professional resume writer and is passionate about providing working professionals with current, reliable and effective job search tools and information. Compare the top executive resumes from the top services in the industry at