The Best 37 Resume Writing Tips You’ll Ever Need from a Recruiter
If you’re tired of never receiving the results you want after you’ve applied for job after job, you probably need a little help with your current resume.
As a Talent Acquisition professional for more than 5 years, I’ve looked at thousands of resumes and cover letters over the years and there’s a very simple trend: PREPARATION and RESEARCH!
The more you know about the job you want, the better chance you’ll create for yourself in tailoring your resume and catching the recruiter’s eye for an interview.
Check out the tips I’ve compiled below to help you create an interview-worthy resume.
Lay the Foundation for a Solid Resume
- Create a professional email address (i.e. firstname.lastname@example.org) (Not: email@example.com)
- Ensure you have updated contact and social media information (working phone number, email address you check often, professional LinkedIn profile).
- Create an employer-friendly voicemail message.
- Determine your desired job title and responsibilities.
- Research job postings in your area. Are you living in a market where you’re able to work in the field you desire? If not, can you work remotely, relocate or create your own opportunity?
- List relevant skills related to the job. If moving into a new career field, take inventory of your transferable skills.
- Actually read the job posting and make sure you have the required job qualifications before applying.
- Determine if additional education is required (either independently or formal).
- Research companies you’d like to work for (culture, mission statement, outlook, salary). Company websites and Glassdoor.com are great places to start.
- Research salary.
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Writing Your Resume
- Choose a no-frills, professional font (unless you’re in a more art-friendly/creative field).
- (Arial, Times New Roman, Calibri are a few good examples.)
- Keep your font between 10-12 points. It should be easy to read.
- Organize your professional history in reverse chronological order (most recent work should be listed first).
- Utilize powerful action verbs throughout your resume (i.e. created, eliminated, empowered).
- Create your career summary or career objective.
- This should be no more than 3-4 short, powerful sentences summarizing your career history or value you’d add to the company.
- Add your most relevant and impressive career information early on in your resume.
- Add your education, especially if it’s relevant to what the position requires.
- Briefly describe outcomes of most impressive accomplishments in detail.
- Standardized sales processes which increased closing rates by 30% over a 6-month period.
- Quantify your accomplishments by adding performance or sales metrics.
- i.e. closed 98% sales over a 9 month period
- Don’t be afraid to add a pop of color on your resume. Soft blues and grays are safe choices to give your resume an interesting, yet professional look.
- Leave out “References Available Upon Request”. Recruiters know you’d provide this information if asked.
- Leave out anything salary related.
- This is usually an application question or can be uncovered during your research or discussed during an interview. Some jobs even post the salary in the job posting so pay attention!
- Utilize key words taken directly from the job posting.
- Properly name your resume file (i.e. JanePepsiResume.pdf)
- Add your LinkedIn profile to your resume (near your contact information).
- Ditch adding a picture. Save this for LinkedIn!
- Don’t add hobbies unless they’re related to the company culture (i.e. volunteering, Toastmasters).
- Strategically bold important words and/or phrases
- Use bullet points.
- Use white space and omit irrelevant information.
- Take a break and revisit your resume with fresh eyes.
- Add a relevant cover letter that complements your resume.
- Check your grammar.
- Multiple pages are okay. Don’t stress out if you have a 2 page resume.
- Add industry awards and honors.
- Edit and proofread.
- Save and upload as a PDF. It looks clean, professional, and formatting will not be compromised.