After years of working in the executive staffing and recruiting industry, collaborating with countless hiring managers and human resource administrators across various industries, I acquired a thorough understanding of what these individuals were looking for in potential job candidates. I began to see patterns, consistencies, universal tendencies, and I began to see just how important a good resume really is.
As a point of fact, hiring managers only spend around 15 seconds perusing over a new resume and they are really only looking for a couple of things when they do. They’re on autopilot, for the most part. They want to know:
1) Who have you worked for?
2) Have you had steady employment?
3) What notable achievements and recognitions have you had throughout your career?
4) What do you have to offer which will meet with their specific needs?
An effective resume will answer those questions with a minimal amount of effort and, as with any effective marketing tool, it will also leave the reader wanting to know more. You want to give them just enough info to prompt them into action. That’s when they pick up the phone and call you for an interview!
So your resume is your professional introduction. It’s your only chance to make a memorable first impression and I can tell you right now that if you do not take your resume seriously, then your resume will never be TAKEN seriously. It really is that simple.
Now, if you feel you are capable and qualified to write a compelling and dynamic resume, then by all means give it a shot. However, if you’re not extremely confident in your skills as a writer and/or marketer, I would sincerely recommend you hook up with a professional resume writer to help you craft the perfect resume for you. A seasoned veteran in these matters can be an invaluable resource. After all, I trust my mechanic to work on my car because he works on cars all day, every day. Well there are people out there who work on resumes all day, every day…so trust us!
For those who are convinced they have what it takes, this article should help you with some of the finer points. Although job markets and technologies are always changing, there are some things which are fairly universal and constitute the basic principles of a winning resume. To guide you along, I have compiled a comprehensive list of resume writing Do’s and Don’ts, complete with secret tricks of the trade as well as a collection of common mistakes people make. So pay close attention, take my advice into consideration, and you’ll be on your way to landing that dream job in no time!
Misrepresent the Truth – Lying on your resume is never a good idea. You don’t want to start a professional relationship based on the misrepresentation of facts. Just as you would hope the employer is not lying to you about the job requirements, salary, etc, they expect you are not lying to them about your background and/or skill sets. It’s the decent and respectable way to conduct yourself and there is no room for dishonesty in the workplace because, sooner or later, these things always have a tendency to come to the surface. Remember: The truth shall set you free!
Use Slang or Jargon – You need to be as professional as possible in the context of your resume if you expect to be taken seriously as a professional. For this reason, you should avoid using familiar lingo, slang, or jargon in your resume. The exception to this rule is when using very industry-specific terminology to describe your particular skills. This can actually help to lend you credit as a knowledgeable individual and an expert in your field, but your such terms wisely and tactfully.
Include a Picture – Unless you’re a model or in a professional dependent on physical attributes, I always advise against putting your picture on your resume. In my experience, it can do more harm than good. So keep the formatting of the resume simple and let the hiring manager use their imagination until they call you in for an interview. Plus, your looks should have nothing to do with your professionalism or the credentials qualifying you for the position. In the business world (even legally), your appearance should have no value as a selling point for you as a competent job candidate.
Include Irrelevant Info (AKA “Fluff”) – If it’s not important, don’t add it to your resume. If you were a cook 10 years ago but now you’re looking for a job in retail management, don’t clutter up your resume with irrelevancy. Try to put yourself in the shoes of the hiring manager and ask yourself what they would see as important. How does your background correspond with their needs as an employer? Anything else is fluff. Don’t add your hobbies to your resume. Don’t add your references (if they want them, they’ll ask at the appropriate time). And don’t include your high school education either. Finally, don’t be redundant and repeat yourself throughout the context of your resume. It’s OK to reinforce themes, but don’t push it. If your title has been Branch Manager at each of your past three companies, find a way to differentiate each of these positions and highlight your most notable accomplishments. Don’t just copy and paste the line “Managed a team of branch employees” three times. That will get you nowhere.
Include a Core Competencies Section – I find Core cover letter 代寫 Competency sections to be fairly worthless in a professional resume and I’ll tell you why: It doesn’t matter if you’re a waitress, an administrative assistant, a nurse, a teacher, or a sales executive – it doesn’t matter what kind of background you have – anyone can describe themselves as “Self-Motivated”. Anyone can say they are “Goal Oriented” and “Results-Driven” and everyone has “Strong Verbal and Written Skills” when they’re applying for a job. I can say with some degree of certainty that the majority of hiring managers and HR administrators skip right past a Core Competencies section and with good reason. The key to a successful resume is in SHOWING a manager how you are “Results-Driven” and “Goal Oriented” instead of just TELLING them! Your accomplishments speak volumes, let them do the talking. If you are going to include a Core Competencies section, make sure it’s unique and adds value. Again, vagueness will often work against you here because it cheapens the experience of reading your resume.