Resume Writing Tips
Use Bulleted Sentences
In the body of your resume, use bullets with short sentences rather than lengthy paragraphs. Resumes are read quickly; therefore make key phrases stand out. Bulleting information will help the reader view.
Use Action Words
Use action words-word like prepared, managed, developed, monitors, and presented will cause your resume to stand out. If your resume in scanned electronically, the computer will pick up on the words. You read correctly, some companies now scan in your resume and have computers pull those that meet certain criteria. The computers are looking for one thing- they are looking for keywords that have been picked by the hiring manager. These are action keywords that relate to the position, so not including them could mean your resume is disregarded as a “non match”.
Use %’s, $’s, and #’s
You should always use %’s, $’s, and #’s. Dollar totals, numbers, and percentages stand out in the body of a resume.
Highlight your Strengths
Highlight your strengths, and what is most relevant to the potential employer. In-coming resumes are typically reviewed in 10-30 seconds, so put forth the effort and determine which bullets most strongly support your job search objective. Put the strong and most relevant points first where they are more apt to be read. This is your hook for the reader, the rest of your resume reels them in
Match the need they have
Match the need they have- Review job postings online and in the newspaper for positions that interest you. Each position will usually have a brief blurb about the company and the position available. Use the keywords listed in these ads, and match them to the bullet points in your resume. Chances are that you have some of these as key points already, however, if you have missed any, add them to your resume. Using a custom resume instead of a generic one will greatly increase your chances of an interview, as you will be a better match in the eyes of the reader.
Above all in your resume and interview-you must be positive. Therefore, leave off the negatives and irrelevant points. If you feel your graduation date will subject you to age discrimination, leave it off your resume. If you do some duties in your current job that don’t support your job search objective, don’t include them. Focus on the duties that do support your objective and leave off irrelevant personal information like your race, weight, and height.
White Space is Important
White space is important. Open up the newspaper and take note of which ads first catch your attention. Are they the ads that are jammed full of text, or are they ads that have a large amount of unused space (“white space”). This is done to grab your attention, as readers are always attracted to open areas. For this reason, don’t worry if you are having a hard time filling the page with text; increase your line spacing to compensate
How long should my resume be? What size font should I use? The font size should be no smaller than 10 points, standard serif or sans serif fonts. Don’t use intricate fonts that are hard to read. Keeping your fonts standard will help combat conversion issues from PC to MAC and from program version to another. The length of your resume should be 1-2 pages. Yes, you read correctly; you can use more than one page. But remember, keep it concise. It’s okay to use two pages for your resume, however it is not necessary.
Now, you’re ready! Start applying-Apply for some jobs that appear to be above your qualifications, apply to positions that are a match, and apply to positions which may be below your level. Why? Perhaps the position below will turn out to be more than it appeared once you interview for them, or perhaps once you have your foot in the door you can learn of other opportunities. If nothing else, interviewing more and more will increase your interviewing skills. it will decrease your nervousness, and increase your skills for facing tough questions.