Sorry mate, your resume sucks. Have you ever been told that? No? Oh yes you have, you just didn’t listen. Many times when you don’t hear back from a company it is because your resume sucks. Yes, it may be that you still are using comic sans or maybe you are one of those twits that uses a script font. But it is usually that you do not do a good job of selling yourself.
10 seconds on Twitter looking up #resume will tell you a few no-brainers:
- Dump the objective – at best it just takes up space. Usually it tells me that you are a mouth breather that forgot to change it from the last job you applied for.
- Don’t say “references upon request” – we are guessing that you will give them.
- Do not write in paragraphs – you get 4-10 seconds of my attention initially. If I am not intrigued then I am on to the next one.
But there are a few things that I think are also important to do. Keep in mind, this is for resumes in ‘Merica and not CVs.
- Put a summary at the top – this allows you to get the most relevant stuff out there first.
- Be truthful but don’t be a kid – Let’s say that the ad says they want a CPA but you let yours lapse but your score was an 85 when you passed it. Would it be untruthful to list that you passed the Uniform CPA Examination with an 85? I think not.
- If your job history is spotty, try listing why you left each position, especially if it was because of layoffs or similar. I like this look:
Separated due to layoff
- Write a cover letter – but keep in mind, if your resume sucks I will never see the cover letter. Also, don’t use the exact same cover letter each time. If you do that then just save the keystrokes.
- Reverse chronological unless your relevant experience is old – If you want to teach again and it has been 20 years since you have then you might want to split up your experience between “Relevant Experience” and “Other Experience.”
Lastly, your resume is yours. There is no ONE right way to put a resume together but there are several wrong ways. Want to look at examples of resumes? Google it or go to Indeed and click on “find resumes” to look at other people’s resumes.
With resumes, it’s not about including everything. It’s about including the RIGHT things.
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