Do you want to get a potential employer’s attention? Many times, their first impression of you is through your resume. That’s why you want to make sure it grabs attention for all the right reasons. Here are five tips to write a resume that sets you above the competition:
Tip 1: Ditch the Templates
Resume templates can give you a good idea of the general information to include. However, if you stick too closely to them, your resume will end up looking like hundreds of others. For competitive or in-demand positions, you’ll need every advantage. Customizing your resume can help.
Tip 2: Keep it Readable
Employers don’t want to read a novel for every applicant. If they see a wall of text that goes on for pages, your resume will probably end up in the ’round file.’ Here are a few tips for boosting readability:
- Use bullet points, especially to list dates, technical information, or skills.
- Break information up with headers.
- Keep the sections small. Paragraphs of 3-5 sentences are your friends.
- Include lines and graphics to add visual interest. Don’t go overboard.
- Pick a highly readable and professional looking font. Aim for 10-12 points. You can’t go wrong with classics like Garamond or highly readable options like Arial.
Tip 3: Include Vital Information
You might be surprised by how many people don’t include a contact number or email in their resume. This kind of slip-up can sink your application before it starts, so doublecheck that you’ve included them. Also, make sure that your included email is professional and features your name. If you don’t have one, get one.
Other vital information can include your education, certifications and awards you may have, relevant skills, and other languages spoken. All of these details could give you a competitive edge.
Tip 4: What Not to Include
There’s no need to draw attention to gaps in your education or job history; you can cover this during the job interview.
Don’t include your age, gender, or a photograph unless it’s relevant to the job itself.
Finally, don’t include references. You’ll likely be expected to have these available, but you produce them later in the application process.
Tip 4: Tailor Your Resume
Every time you apply, look over your resume and tailor it to the job you want. Potential employers can see a generic resume from a mile away. While tailoring this document, take a second look at the company or job listing. If they’re asking for a specific skill or work experience, make sure you highlight that.
One trick here is to use the exact phrases in the job ad. These will jump out to employers who are skimming through dozens of applications. Also, remember that many resumes are handled by application tracking systems. These programs scan your resume for certain information and keywords. If you don’t include them, it’s unlikely a human will see your resume.
Tip 5: Proofread Before Sending
When you’re tailoring a resume again and again, it’s easy for small spelling and grammar errors to creep in. However, these are unprofessional. You don’t want to miss out on a dream job due to a little mistake like this. Automatic spell checkers help but do miss some mistakes. Try reading your resume aloud and asking someone else to doublecheck things.
At Placers, we believe in putting people first. We want to find the right fit for each job seeker’s skills and career goals. Now that you’ve polished off your resume, are you ready to find an exciting job in the Delaware area? Call us at 302-709-0973 or visit our website to learn more.