This has probably happened to you before: You lose your job or want to change jobs. Your first step is to update your resume, which you haven't since you took your last job since - oh, maybe the days of the Clinton administration.
This isn't new. Many of us are more inclined to be more reactive than proactive when it comes to managing our careers.
But with less employer loyalty and an ever-changing job market, it makes perfect sense to manage your resume even when you're happy where you are in your career. When you meet or surpass a goal, complete a critical project on or ahead of deadline, implement a cost-savings initiative, or make any other significant accomplishment that will enhance your marketability, the details are fresh in your mind. Just transfer them to your resume.
An Electronic Diary
Think of your resume as a diary or journal. And today's computer technology makes updating easier.
As a bonus, continually updating your resume may lead you to one of those moments of epiphany when you realize that you can handle a larger, more challenging role. For instance, let's say that before your current or last job, you had an inconsistent record as a project manager: you made some deadlines yet also missed some. But since you moved on, you secured a project management certification, all your projects were completed on time, and you were given more challenging projects, which were also done on time and boosted company revenue 5-10%. That may well be enough to draw a hiring manager's interest and call you in to interview for a higher-paying position with more responsibility.
Or, if you really like your current job and would prefer to stay, you might lean on those new accomplishments to justify a raise or promotion. It would also help if you are asked to do a self-assessment for an upcoming performance appraisal.
How often do you update your resume? If so, has it helped you position yourself better for your next career move?