Your resume is the most important part of your job search. It will either land you an interview or get you thrown in the “not interested” pile in a matter of minutes. It is vital that you take the time to craft a resume that shows your potential employers why they can’t live without you. These are five things you must do when composing your resume.
- Keep It Short: Recruiters and hiring managers are busier than ever. If your resume is longer than a page, you can be pretty sure it is not going to get read. Keep your resume brief and highlight only the relevant aspects of your career and education. Additionally, you no longer need to include references on your resume; simply state they are available if needed.
- Use Your Words Wisely: Since you are working with limited space, you better make it count. Focus on action words and actual statistics to demonstrate what you bring to the table. Vagueness will not do you any good.
- Make It Easy to Read: As previously mentioned, your resume is likely to only get a few minutes of attention before it is tossed to the wayside. Make sure you emphasize the important parts with bullet points and use a simple font so that your resume is easily scannable.
- Put the Most Important Information at the Top: Use the first few sentences to really capture the reader’s attention. Put your most mind-blowing achievements and stand-out qualities here. If you do this correctly, your resume might get more than a few minutes of attention.
- Include a Cover Letter: For some reason, many applicants skip the cover letter. This is a big mistake. The cover letter is your chance to speak to the hiring manager. Why should they choose you over everyone else? A well-written cover letter will land you an interview much faster than any perfected resume can.
- Include a Video Resume: Although not usually requested, a video resume could make the difference between getting an interview and being thrown in the not interested pile. A resume is a decent representation of your skills and experience, but it hardly speaks to your soft skills and your personality. Including a video resume with your written resume gives employers a chance to see who you are and how you present yourself “in-person” before an interview even takes place!