Did you know you only have 6-10 seconds to catch a recruiter's eye with your resume? After scanning hundreds of resumes the last month and making several modifications, I thought it was time I put my knowledge into a formula to help you build that Rock-Star resume! After all, you have all those years of experience and hard work, now it's time for a resume face lift! Let’s start off with the THREE C’s! Your resume should be three things: CONCISE- COMPREHENSIVE-CLEAR
Concise: Nothing stands out more to me than spacing errors or different bullet points. The key is to format the information in a way that makes it easy to scan quickly to recognize your job goals and relevant qualifications and achievements. Make sure to keep your alignment and format consistent. A bulleted list of your work experience should be tailored to match the job you are applying for but with TRUTH of relevant experience. Believe it or not, Recruiters and hiring managers can recognize BS. We ask specific technical questions for a reason. When you reach those next steps, make sure your resume aligns with your experience. Also PLEASE read your resume and make sure it has the correct tense and action verbs. It's simple, if you're employed and writing about the responsibilities and accomplishments in your present job, use the present tense. If you're writing about a past job, use past tense. Need help on what to use? Check these phrases and utilize here >>>>>>
Comprehensive: When you add content, your main goal is to showcase your experience in a chronological order. Does the objective explain who you are, why you’re a valuable asset to their company and/or where you want to go in your career in a SHORT few sentences? If not, it’s time to revisit! Please don’t go overboard…. When I receive a resume three pages long, I already know I am going to have to do some work. Keep it to two pages max. Yes, we know you are amazing and might have years of experience, but remember- your resume is essentially your ticket for next steps in the process whether that be a phone screen or an on-site interview. You can dive deeper into your experience at next steps, so don’t feel the need to have a scroll as a resume :).
Clear: Did you happen to put your address or zip code? You might wonder why, it's so we can see if the location might be a good fit or if by the time you arrive from commute you will already be that Debbie Downer. We all know that one person who travels an hour and a half+ to get to work and most likely we avoid every Monday morning with the "Good Morning" as you know he/she will hit you with the "Traffic was horrible".... Recruiters want to set you up for success and want you to have a work/life balance outside of your vehicle or public transportation. PLEASE add your zip code! So, you look at your resume and see bold words... Do the right words stand out? Do your duties align with the job you are applying for? Will the Recruiter see your skills and see you could easily do the job without much hand holding? Simple things like that can already put you in the yes or no bucket. Make sure your resume is clear and the Recruiter isn’t going on a scavenger hunt to find your information!
Student Tip: If you are a student or a recent grad, add your GPA to the education section! In the Accounting and Finance world, this can easily put you in the No bucket. We think if it's not shown, you did poorly or might be too ashamed to showcase! You might wonder if you should add a Major or Cumulative GPA? Add the highest one ;).
Don’t: So now you know what a great resume might look like! I have also added a few DON'T do's I have recently received.
Avoid Repeating Information: Did you perform the same or similar job tasks for more than one employer? Instead of repeating job duties, focus on your accomplishments in each position.
Eliminate Old Experience: Employers are most interested in what you did recently. If you have a long career history, focus on the last 10 to 15 years.
Don't Include Irrelevant Information: Avoid listing hobbies!
Cut Down on Job Duties: Many job seekers can trim the fat off their resumes simply by removing long descriptions of job duties or responsibilities.
Remove the "References Available Upon Request" line: Many job seekers waste the valuable last line of the resume on an obvious statement. Delete it NOW!
If you customize your Objective: Please make sure it has the correct firm/position/location or leave it generic!
So now you know what you might need/not need to do when you give that resume a face lift! Thanks for reading my Three C’s on how to have that rock-star resume and feel free to shoot me over if you are still on the fence, I would be happy to help any way I can. Wishing you the best of luck on your hunt! Stay tuned next month on how to create your best digital footprint AKA your social media brand on LinkedIn!