What Makes a Great Resume? How to Stand Out in Strategic Sourcing & Procurement

January 21, 2015

Team of business people working together on a laptop

What makes a candidate really shine? It’s something we think about a lot here at Argentus. We deal with many qualified supply chain professionals and desirable employers across industries and sectors. Making the best staffing match between our candidates and clients is a track record we take pride in and an experience we consistently seek to optimize.

As a specialty recruiter that facilitates the relationship between job seekers and hiring managers, we know that the matter of demonstrated “value added” often comes down to presentation and perception. In other words: what’s the most effective way to highlight skills and accomplishments? What makes a great resume, and what lays the strongest foundation for a successful placement?

Argentus has explored the topic of accomplishment-based resumes before, but welcomes the opportunity to bolster those findings and how they apply to the supply chain field. We recently interviewed Geoff Lancaster, Director of Procurement & Facilities at WSIB, asking him to share his insights as a hiring manager for mid- to senior-level strategic sourcing and procurement roles in his organization, and a seasoned professional in supply chain who has led projects in both the private and public sector.

Below is a summary of our findings with Mr. Lancaster’s best advice about what’s important to keep in mind when crafting a compelling resume:

Know Your Audience

  • Demonstrate a real understanding of the company where you want to work. What are their pain points? How will your particular experience, background, certification, and skills benefit them?
  • Show that you have a good grasp on the company’s areas of success and potential problems, and draw parallels between that information and your past work experience and key accomplishments.
  • Include details on your resume that reveal specialized knowledge, technical aptitude, and industry insights. Make connections between that information and the major objectives of the job you’re applying for.

Metrics Stand Out

  • Instead of listing duties, use numbers to stand out from the competition and fine-tune what you have to offer a potential employer: supplier performance, portfolio spend, SKU count, increased percentages for product output, cost reductions to streamline, etc.
  • Draw connections between your metrics and how those achievements benefitted your employer’s bottom line.

Add Dimension with Your Digital Presence

  • LinkedIn profiles, as we’ve previously mentioned, are quickly becoming the new resume. Make sure to create parallels with your LinkedIn profile and the CV you submit for job applications.
  • Reputation matters, especially when a professional community is small or niche, like strategic sourcing and procurement are in Canada.
  • You’re not just your resume, you’re also your public presence online via social media. Make sure the kind of things you share about yourself, personally and professionally, communicate the right message.

Take Advantage of Specialty Recruiters, They’re On Your Team

  • When clients don’t see metrics, miss your qualitative contributions, or don’t make the mental leap to see how you could fit into their organization, a specialty recruiter can step in to draw attention to your accomplishments.
  • Using a specialty recruiter who knows you and your resume means they are able to advocate on your behalf – something that benefits both employer and job seeker. Better matches mean a better return on investment for both parties.
  • Specialty recruiters that really know strategic sourcing and procurement are able to fill in the gaps of what even a great resume can miss: personality, critical thinking, work ethic, etc. – the kinds of “soft skills” that can make or break a good fit and add a human touch to talent acquisition


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