by Aysha von Buchstab, Human Resources Services, Professional Services Plus, Inc.
As I sit here, sifting through resumes, trying to find the right candidates to present to one of our clients for a new opportunity, I cannot help but wonder why so many job seekers seem unaware of what a presentable resume should look like.
Now, I am not saying you always need to have a professional resume writer prepare your resume (mind you, having a pro go through it at least once might be helpful); but at least take some time and do a Google (or your favorite search engine) search to find some examples of what qualifies as acceptable in the current employment market. Think about it: You are spending countless hours searching for a job opportunity; sending out dozens of resumes–yet, you have not invested time to research how a professional resume should be formatted or what to include — ?
Do you honestly believe my client wants to read about what you did 15+ years ago? Is this even remotely relevant to the job you are currently applying for? No, it isn’t. They are more interested in your recent accomplishments and work experience.
Do you really think I have time to read through a seven-page resume? No, I don’t. In fact, I have a special, heavy-duty shredder for these.
OK, enough ranting. Here is my advice: If you want to get your resume to the top of the pile, you need to sell your experience and qualifications in 2-3 pages, maximum. If your resume is longer, spend some time to tighten it up before starting your job search (or before investing any more time in your current search). By not having a concise, strong resume, you may be missing out on some great job opportunities.
Here are 5 tips for creating a resume that will get noticed:
- Add a career summary to the top of your resume. Keep it brief; and highlight your experiences that are relevant to the position you are applying for.
- Beneath your summary, list your skills in short, bulleted format. Ensure you indicate both soft and hard skills relevant to the job description.
- Highlight your professional experience, including key accomplishments for various positions you have held. This is your opportunity to shine and standout from other applicants by demonstrating differences you have made in your career.
- Your resume should be, ideally, two pages–no more than 3 pages–long. What you did 10-15 years ago doesn’t matter; and this information is going to extend your resume. Get rid of it.
- If you are still unsure as to what format to use for your resume and prefer not to have a professional review it, then please GOOGLE it–there are many articles and formats out there to review. If you go this route, ensure that you are reviewing current articles and trends; not something written 5 years ago.
Good luck with your job search!
Find more tips like this one at Professional Services Plus