What does your resume have to look like to be the best of the lot? Some criteria:
Content versus format – Make sure the content of your resume is the central focus rather than decorative elements, unusual format or unfamiliar fonts. Anything that detracts from your content will take away the value of your experiences. A resume is a marketing vehicle that describes your worth to a hiring organization in order to get an interview.
Summarize results at the top – In about 10 seconds, hiring managers will first scan your resume and either put it on the pile to read more thoroughly, or in the reject pile. A summary of your results at the top of the resume guarantees that your achievements will be seen. If you’ve matched the skills and experiences defined in the position description, you will most likely get a full consideration and interview.
Word-pictures – The words you use to describe your experiences must form a positive picture in the mind of the hiring manager. Upon reading your resume, you want the hiring manager to say, “I want to interview this person as they have what I’m looking for in a candidate”. Word-pictures are best describing results that you have achieved that match or parallels the position description of the open job.
Use metrics – Use word-pictures that show results in a measurable way. Examples: Increased revenue by 12% in 12 months through market segmentation. Decreased cost by 8% through process improvement technology. Reversed turnover by 11% by improving the interview procedure. Improved productivity 9% with no staff adds through group resolutions.
List technology skills – Most all hiring managers want to validate that you are technologically skilled, from check-out food retailers to major tech companies. The position description should list critical requirements. List those skills first, then add all other programs, languages, applications, or models. You never know what added value you may have over all others with a technical experience they might need in the future.
Some don’ts – Don’t embellish your resume beyond what you’re capable of doing: It’s very easy to be found out. Don’t add miscellaneous information that’s not asked for: It detracts from your primary experiences. Unless your summer-time work adds value to your resume, forget it. Don’t worry about small job gaps or a job-jump you made. With the pandemic, remote work and the supply/demand craziness of the marketplace, you can easily explain a bump in your resume.
Never, ever lie or fabricate – In today’s world it’s very easy to verify information, or reveal an untruth. Your reputation and credibility are far too important to risk a falsehood.
Follow these basic guidelines and you’ll have a solid resume. Expand your resume to meet or exceed the requirements of the position description and you’ll get noticed. Use word-pictures, metrics and a content-packed resume with a strong summary at the top, plus a list of your technologies at the bottom of your resume, and you’ll get an interview.
For a FREE critique of your resume, send to: firstname.lastname@example.org