When you are applying for a position, a couple of situations occur: submit an application, hand-in your portfolio, complete an online questionnaire, or submit a link to your work (developers & designers). In each situation, your resume is the first part of the evaluation process potential employers review. Your resume should be as job specific as possible, 1-3 pages in length – considering your experience. For individuals who have years of experience, a general rule of thumb is to go 10 years back into your work history. If you have related experience further than 10 years, summarize prior experience in the “Additional Information” or “Prior Experience” section.
The first section of your resume should contain your personal/contact information (keep your email professional – [email protected] is not professional). Following your personal information, create a “Summary” or “Qualifications” section. This is an opportunity to optimize keywords included in the job announcement and an increased opportunity to beat the bots (ATS systems).
Next, strategically list your “Work Experience”, “Volunteer Work”, and “Education” in reverse chronological order, starting with the most recent. Create content that is focused on knowledge, skills, and abilities while including keywords from the job announcement. When focusing on knowledge, skills, and abilities – within your specific job – what situations, tasks, actions were you involved in? And what were the results? Example – Assisted in the recovery of excess inventory within the warehouse, cutting department cost by 3%. The reason for listing volunteer work is to show a continuous engagement with performing tasks, demonstrate effort to gain knowledge in your particular career field, and to give the reader an opportunity to grasp a piece of who you are. List all universities attended (if you have not completed your degree, provide an anticipated date). Most individuals do not include their high school. It’s common sense that if you have a degree, you probably completed high school or a GED program but I was hired in my first career position because the recruiter graduated from the same high school; not saying that will happen to everyone but any edge in getting hired should be utilized, the job market is flooded!
What a resume should look like:
– Short paragraph format summarizing your positions followed by bullet points – OR – bulleted format
– 10-12 point font, Times New Roman, Garamond, or Arial
– Maintain format consistency throughout your resume; do not use borders, shaded lines, background colors or any other special characters that cannot be read by Automatic Tracking Systems (ATS).
Present yourself in the most organized and professional manner. HR reps and recruiters are judging! Have a professional review your resume and utilize it as a master copy that you can tweak along the way. For questions, contact us.