Your resume is the gateway to an interview. It has to be compelling for the job and strikingly better than most all other candidates. If your resume doesn’t excite the hiring manager, you won’t get an interview. A compelling resume makes the hiring manager say, “This is someone I want to talk to!” So how do you strengthen your resume? Or weaken it? Read on.
HOW DO YOU WEAKEN YOUR RESUME?:
- Add unnecessary items: References, street mailing address, photo, salary, GPA, strange fonts
- By putting in irrelevant information: Summer jobs (unless a direct relationship to the open job), hobbies (unless related), jobs from 20 years ago, Social media connections, self aggrandizing statements like “Excellent communicator”, personal information, like “Divorced”. Never state your Social Security number
- Don’t write dense narratives using paragraphs that will put most to sleep and are boring
- Don’t include repetitive information from job responsibilities of 2 or more prior positions
- Too many contact sources: Multiple telephones, LinkedIn address, Facebook, work contacts
- Don’t use jargon that may not be understood by the reader, like member “PCVW Association”
- And never state why you want or need the job.
These items not only weaken your resume, but they put you in a naïve, unsophisticated or unprofessional category. Hiring managers are looking for knowledgeable and experienced candidates. A weak resume tells the hiring manager that you may not have the measureable results that the job requires, or the communication skills that are needed.
HOW DO YOU STRENGTHEN YOUR RESUME?:
- Make sure your objective states what you can do for the company rather than what you want
- Briefly summarize your career results at the top of the first page. It gets attention quickly
- Use 3 to 5 bullets for each job describing the results you’ve gotten, including your current job
- Results should be measurable outcomes and how you achieved them: Example – “12.7% growth of revenue over 18 months through consultative selling”
- Use action or descriptive words that show leadership, like “Team-lead in a project of….”
- At the end of your resume, list awards or certifications, like “Project Management (PMP), Six-Sigma, Association membership, certifications, advanced courses and so on
- Use bold or underlining when you want the reader to take special note, but don’t overdo it
- Make sure you list your technological expertise. Organizations want employees who can use technology in their job to increase efficiency and effectiveness, or better yet, reduce cost and increase operating margins.
The strength or weakness of your resume is a barometer that hiring managers gauge the quality of applicants, and then decides whom they will invite to interview and become a primary candidate. You must meet at least 70% of the requirements stated in the position description.
And always be prepared for the most asked question from an interviewer: “Why do you want to leave your current employer?”
For a FREE RESUME REVIEW, send to: firstname.lastname@example.org