The job market is as competitive today as ever, which makes creating an effective resume more important than ever. While a resume alone will not get you a job, it is essential for getting your foot in the door and invited to an interview. Here are 6 quick resume tips that can make a big difference.
1. Identify Keywords
Many companies, even smaller ones, use a digital database to filter resumes. The HR department will do a search based upon a specific set of keywords and if your resume does not have these keywords, then it will never be seen. Normally, these keywords will be nouns although some may be verbs as well. By taking a closer look at the job description, there is a good chance that you will be able to identify a number of keywords that you might be able to include in your resume.
2. Start Strong
Employers will normally make a quick judgment about you within the first 5 seconds of scanning your resume. This means that you must make sure that your resume makes an excellent impression right off the bat. By formatting your resume to center around several strong titles and sub-titles, you will likely get a much better reaction.
3. Proofread, Proofread, Proofread
It is almost impossible to determine how important proofreading your resume a few times can actually be. If your resume states that you are detail oriented, then a resume full of spelling errors implies that this may not be true. If you plan on being treated like a professional, then act like a professional. Proofread your resume at least 2 times.
4. The Most Important Information Must Be First
Employers will rarely read your entire resume, word for word. This means that the most important information needs to be placed first. This is true for your overall resume structure as well as within your sections. The most important sections should be first and the most important information within those sections should be at the top of the list.
5. Use Concrete Examples – Not Statements
It is important that when backing up your skill set or experience that you use concrete examples, not just statements. For example, do not say that you “increased overall profits”, but rather that you “increased overall sales by $25,000 while decreases expenses $10,000”. This gives an employer a firmer grasp on what exactly you did.
6. The Shorter the Better
It has been up for a lot of debate over the years whether or not a resume should be 1 page, 2 pages, or even more. However, a general consensus is that you should keep your resume as short as possible, while still including all relevant and important information. If this means you need a few pages, then use a few pages. However, the more information you include, the higher the likelihood that some of it isn’t actually that important.
There are literally hundreds of different resume tips that people can use to craft the perfect resume, however these 6 are more than enough to get you pointed in the right direction. To ensure that your resume is as effective as possible, identify and include keywords, start strong, proofread several times, prioritize your information, use example-not statements, and always keep your resume as short as possible, while still including all of the important information that you need to share.