Having a solid resume today is the first step in making the right impression. Cutting and pasting your job duties into a paper format is NOT a successful start nor is thinking your LinkedIn profile is enough to get the next step in your career. Putting together an effective resume that positions you for future interviews externally—or internally—takes a thoughtful approach and should start with the following question:
What have been my biggest impacts on the business?
1. Using your impact and achievements as the foundation of your resume naturally frame your resume in a way that employers will appreciate; e.g. “reduced turnover by 15% …by” or “drove cost reductions by 5M by…” etc… The biggest complaint employers give us on resume feedback is “lack of analytics” or “lack of business impact”. A few of these type bullets under each of your roles is much more effective than a laundry listing of your day to day duties.
2. Stick with a clean format without fancy tables, pictures or gothic fonts. There are a number of free resume writing resources available such as Creddle that can help. By using a good format, it will also keep your resume to a reasonable 2-3 pages which we also advise.
3. Nix the Objective at the beginning of a resume. It is outdated and is better replaced by a Summary statement. Use the summary to brand yourself, highlighting your capabilities and/or expertise in a sentence or two but keep it brief.
4. Highlight your stellar education or top notch credentials. If you have a Masters or advanced degree from a great school, make sure it shows up on the first page; otherwise, it is fine to keep the education toward the end of your resume.
5. Employment History should include dates, your titles and a brief statement on the business, size and scope of your company. Don’t assume your reader will know what your companies do.
6. Show Progression. If you’ve been with the same company for ten years but have had 5 roles, make sure they are outlined in the history. Employers love to see a healthy career progression.
7. Check and double check for grammatical and spelling errors. Don’t rely on spellcheck to proof your resume. It does not catch using inaccurate words, like “their” vs “there”. Resumes ripe with simple errors usually are the first to hit the trash can.
8. Computer skills and certifications are still useful to keep on your resume but should be at the bottom and you can forego the “references upon request”—Those will be asked for later in the interviewing process.
Keep it professional — Don’t include your hobbies, religious affiliation or other personal data on your resume.
We are always happy to help you through every step of the process, from determining what your career goals are to helping you reach them. Feel free to contact us!