As a work-at-home mom, it can be tempting to think that resumes are a thing of the past – but that couldn’t be further from the truth.

In fact, having an updated resume may be more important, because many work-at-home jobs, such as web design, photography, tutoring, and crafting, involve continuing to find new clients or customers – and that means marketing your skills. A portfolio and references are important, but you will also likely be asked for your resume. And of course, should you decide that you don’t want to work from home anymore, you’ll need an updated resume to re-enter the traditional workforce.

But why can’t you just wait until the need arises? Here are a few reasons why it’s best to keep your resume up-to-date even if you don’t think you need to.

You can jump on opportunities as they arise. In a time where employers receive dozens – if not hundreds – of resumes just a few hours after posting about a project or job, being one of the first received is increasingly important. If you have a resume prepared, you can make sure you’re toward the top of that long list.

You can account for gaps. Employers hate to see gaps in resumes because they don’t know what you were doing with that time. Maybe you don’t have a good work ethic, or won’t be up with the latest trends and technologies. But if you update your resume, you can work to solve this problem – even if it means including stretching a bit to find “jobs” to include. Your memory will be better if you do that now.

You can keep track. Most jobs you can do from home tend to be of the freelance variety, which means lots of projects and lots of clients. Keeping your resume up-to-date and adding jobs as you do them is a lot easier than trying to play catch up after several years – or even months!

You can prove you’ve kept up. So you haven’t worked for a few years – that doesn’t mean you’re behind the times. An updated resume can show this by including those classes you took on business administration. You can even add volunteer positions with transferable skills like that year you served as President of the PTA, or those Girl Scout fundraisers you organized. Again, it’s all about keeping track of what you’re doing as it happens.

Panicking at the idea of updating your resume? No worries. There are lots of short cuts out there today to make resume-writing a breeze.

If you want to do it all yourself but just feel like you need a bit of help, Microsoft Word can help by providing you with a variety of templates to choose from. This means that all the pesky formatting is done for you and you just fill in the information.

The next step up is a site like GoResumeBuilder or Resume Builder Online. Their free resume builders have simple drop-down menus that gives you the most common resume sections and prompts you to add things like company names and dates so you don’t forget. You can even see how the resume looks in several templates just by typing it in once!

Finally, there are resume writing services where you pay someone to put your resume together for you. Just send your information and the kinds of jobs you’re looking for and they’ll do the rest. Naturally, this is the most expensive solution, but you will have a professional-quality resume at the end.

Ultimately, it doesn’t matter how you do it, just that you do.

Juliana Weiss-Roessler is a momtrepreneur as co-creator of both Weiss-Roessler Writing and son Xavier. She helps individuals and small businesses to market their products and services on the web through blogs, web copy, social media, and other types of content marketing.

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