Your resume will either grab the reader’s attention or not. Grab a coffee and read these in-depth resume writing tips.
It’s not simply enough to capture a person’s attention; you must capture it for the right reasons! This is why many job seekers hire a resume writing service.
Receiving the phone call for a job interview is music to the ears during a job search.
First, we will examine why a resume might attract attention for the wrong reasons:
- Poor physical layout – visually unappealing
- Cramped text or not enough space between bullet points and categories (i.e. a lack of white space)
- Too much white space
- Using an abundance of different fonts or font styles (i.e. bold, italics, underline) used improperly
- Use of “I” statements
- Neglecting to include essential information such as Education, Work Experience
- Too short or too long
- Looks like a standard Microsoft Word template
- Overuse of graphics (problems could arise if scanned), plus it takes away from the content
- It wasn’t submitted with a cover letter to complement and introduce your resume and why you are interested in the position
If you fall into any of the above categories, you must seriously consider revamping or rewriting your document altogether. You only get one shot at making a first impression, so make sure it’s a great one!
Do not potentially throw away your only chance of landing a job interview with the company of your dreams.
Resume Writing Tips to Make Your Resume Gets Noticed for the Right Reasons
- Choose a layout or format that is appealing to your eye – look at is from a hiring manager’s eye
- Make sure each line is easy to read
- Use headers to make different categories or sections stand out (i.e. Education and Credentials, Professional Experience, Professional Development, Technology Integration, Community Involvement)
- Maintain consistency throughout your entire document when it comes to spacing and font of choice
- Do NOT use “I” anywhere in your resume
- Search the internet for a resume style that looks unique and helps draw the reader’s eye to your accomplishments and standout qualities
- Bullet points for lists always generate and deserve extra attention
- Create a separate section for your Areas of Expertise
- Develop an exceptional profile paragraph
- Make sure your name and contact information do not get lost in the shuffle
- Refrain from including “fluff” to lengthen your document
- Do NOT lie on your resume; lies will be uncovered at some point during the interview process or shortly after being hired
- Target the needs of the potential employer
- Highlight job accomplishments that will sell you as an employee
- Solicit feedback from friends, family members, or a professional curriculum vitae writer
This may seem like a long list of things to look for when developing your resume; however, they are necessary if you wish to make it to the next stage of the job application process – landing a job interview. The resume writing process can seem very daunting, which is why many job seekers hire a resume writing service.
Once you have mastered determining “right attention grabbers” from “wrong attention grabbers,” the next step is to make your resume stand out from the competition.
Resume Writing Tips on the Physical Format and Content of a Resume
1. Physical Resume Format of the Resume:
a. Use color for your name and headers; do not use bright colors or hues that are hard to read
b. Incorporate a professional looking border; instead of one that uses icons
c. Let white space be your friend; white space can break up sections and give the eye a break from text overload
d. Integrate an icon; if your profession has an image that is traditionally associated with it, you may wish to insert a small one beside your name
e. It’s not necessary to incorporate all of the above!
2. Resume Writing Tips Regarding Content:
a. Incorporate professional achievements; these demonstrate concrete proof of your ability to perform optimally in the workplace
i. Use the C.A.R. acronym (Challenge, Action, Result) to explain your achievements properly and in context
ii. What was the Challenge? What Action did you take? What was the Result? These should be written in regular sentence format
b. Explain what your duties were; this may seem pretty straightforward and obvious, but many people fail to include job responsibilities, particularly if they are out of the norm
c. Testimonials; quotes and testimonials are excellent to include, they provide the reader with proof of your skills and accomplishments
d. Highlight your relevant Areas of Expertise; these can be written in list format or as a table near the top of your resume. They should include hard skill sets such as Budget Forecasting, Teambuilding, Customer Service, Marketing, Brand Development, etc.
e. Set aside space for your Professional Development; this could include workshops, seminars, in-services, or post-secondary courses
f. Incorporate an area for Professional Affiliations, if you have any
g. Implement Community Involvement initiatives; include position held, the organization you worked with, and the years of service
h. Highlight Honors and Awards; list the name of the award, when you received it, and did it acknowledge, if the name of the award isn’t already self-explanatory
i. Integrate Technology Integration / Computer Expertise
j. Employment references would go on a separate piece of paper with the same letterhead as the resume
As I mentioned before, you only get one shot at making a first impression! These steps are necessary for giving you the best chance at capturing the reader’s attention and being put in the ‘to-interview’ pile. Before submitting your resume, be honest, what would your value to the interviewer look like with the document you created?
If you are unsure of how your resume, cover letter, or other job application documents fair, please contact Candace or call toll-free 1 877 738-8052 for more information on our resume writing service.