Creating a standout resume can be challenging, especially when recruiters typically look at a resume for approximately 6 seconds before deciding to put it in the “maybe” or “no” pile. If you look at any expert in any field, whether it’s an athlete or an author, it can be difficult to figure out what makes them so good. They just are. What these experts do better than most is that they limit their mistakes to a minimum. Some of what I share here is superficial and the rest is a very easy fix. You’ve got to get rid of the excess before you can make an impression. To improve your resume writing skills, consider the following tips:
- Keep your professional summary at the top of your resume short and to the point, highlighting who you are and what you do.
- Avoid using color on your resume as it can detract from the content.
- Every job you’ve had does not need to appear on your resume. Entry-level jobs that you had in high school can be omitted unless they are relevant to the job you’re applying to.
- Be accurate and specific about your job titles, highlighting accomplishments rather than just responsibilities. Show your value. If you are a new grad, take your responsibilities and turn them into achievements, did you reduce time to accomplish something, or did you create a better process that helped the business?
- Tailor your skills to the job posting, highlighting relevant advanced abilities rather than basic skills that are expected. If you are skilled at an intermediate or advanced level in Excel, state that.
- Avoid mentioning irrelevant information or reasons for leaving past employers. It could work against you. Instead, save this information for the interview.