If you do a quick Google search for “average time spent on reviewing each resume”, the most popular results will tell you that it is 6 seconds. Whether that is true or not, nobody really knows. One thing is for sure, in a world where hundreds of people are applying for the same job, the people responsible for reviewing the resumes are looking for any excuses to eliminate them. Follow these resume writing tips to ensure that your resume doesn’t get put in the no pile on the first pass.
1) Check the spelling – double and triple check
Your resume is often the first contact that you have with a potential employer and you definitely want to make a good first impression! Make sure that you check the spelling, spell check is there so use it.
2) Check the details – ensure that names, company name, address are spelled correctly
Double check the spelling of names as the spell check will not always pick up those mistakes. It is also easy to make mistakes when writing down an address, so pay close attention to those too.
3) Know your audience – resume should be employer oriented
Applying for a job at law firm? You should probably opt for a more traditional resume format. Applying for a job at an interior design company, go for a less traditional and more creative template.
4) Use appropriate language – don’t use slang
Slang can confuse the reader and send the wrong message. Make sure that the language that you are using is clear, appropriate and professional.
5) Don’t lie – highlight your strengths
Present yourself in the best possible light but don’t exaggerate or even worse lie about your skills and experience. Getting caught in a lie is the fastest way to ensuring you aren’t selected for that dream job!
6) Don’t be redundant. Really, don’t be redundant.
We know that people reviewing resumes, don’t spend much time doing so. Make sure that the little time that they do spend they aren’t seeing at the same information more than once.
7) Consistent use of 1st or 3rd person
Both use of the 1st or 3rd person in a resume and cover letter are acceptable but be consistent!
8) Ensure that the facts in your resume matches the information on social media – LinkedIn, job boards, etc.
You have spent a significant amount of time working on a new version of your resume, take the few extra minutes to ensure that this resume is also updated on social media platforms such as LinkedIn. Far too often while comparing a person’s resume with their LinkedIn profile, there are glaring inconsistencies leaving the resume reviewer to wonder which version is true. Don’t let that happen to you.
9) Have a cover letter! And, make sure it matches your resume – fonts, header, footer, tone
There are differing points of view on the importance of including a cover letter but unless it is specified that you should not include one, do so! Done right, it will highlight your most relevant skills and qualifications for the job. Spend the time tailoring it for each job you apply for.
10) Unsure of what to do or where to start – hire a certified resume writer.
Certified resume writers will be able to create a resume for you that will make you shine. They won’t be able to guarantee you the job or even an interview, but they will help you put your best foot forward.
Questions? Contact us.