Did you know most managers only briefly glance through resumes as they select who to interview? Put yourself in their shoes and imagine receiving anywhere from 50 – 100 profiles for every job you post. How much time could you truly devote? Are you going to scan every line of each resume? Probably not! Take it from a person that reads resumes all day, there are a handful of do’s and don’ts when it comes to writing your resume to make sure you land that interview.
1. Review the job description and make the necessary changes to your current resume. What does this mean? If you are or want to be a Business Analyst and the words “Business Analyst” aren’t anywhere to be found in your resume, you probably won’t be selected. It sounds simple, but we see it all the time. Take it a step further and look for action words like develop, implement, support and make sure yours match up to the job description. One thing I want to stress. DO NOT LIE on your resume, which brings me to my next point.
2. Absolutely DO NOT LIE about skills, past jobs and / or durations your resume. Managers will find out real fast if you are lying once they start asking questions. The last thing you want is to be black listed from a company for wasting a manager’s time. Plus you never know who they might know.
3. Stay away from 3rd person. Some managers don’t mind reading a resume in 3rd person. It drives others nuts! Just to be safe, don’t do it! I know we all like Star Wars, but let’s not write like Yoda! I would even suggest staying away from 1st person and only using statements. An example might be, “Innovative, results-oriented Information Technology Leader with expertise in building, leading and mentoring global organizations to efficiently deliver complex technical solutions.”
4. Use bullets. Under each job in your employment history include bullets of your responsibilities including what you did where. Do not lump all the info into one gigantic paragraph. Boring!
5. Stay away from funky graphics and pictures. It’s great that you have a creative side, but just because you love dragons doesn’t mean your future employer will share the same appreciation for mythical creatures. That’s a little extreme, but this also includes profile pictures, flowers and swirls. Believe it or not, I’ve seen all of the above in resumes.
6. Stay away from overly fancy, hard to read fonts. I recommend using a clear generic font like Arial. You have to remember the person reading your resume might not have your font installed on their computer. Not every computer comes standard with the same font package. Even if they do, just because you like it doesn’t mean your employer wants to spend the extra effort trying to read it.
I’m sure there are many more tips out there and some I left out. Follow my advice and I promise you will be more successful at landing interviews. As always, please feel free to reach out to me at Jeffrey.firstname.lastname@example.org and I will provide our free resume template and sample to use as a guide.