Your resume is often the first interaction you have as a candidate with a hiring manager. As a result, you must set a good impression from the very beginning of your candidacy by crafting a show-stopping resume. And since the job market is holding firm as we approach the end of Q1, now is a perfect time to review your resume. It’s time to Spring clean that resume of yours! Here are a few tips on how to make it shine.
One of the essential steps to crafting a killer resume is proper formatting. This may look different depending on your experience level or industry, but overall, your resume should follow the following order:
- Name and contact details
- Objective or summary (optional)
- Work experience
- Awards and certificates
Unless you are fresh out of school, you want your work experience front and center. That means it’s time to move your education towards the bottom of your resume. If you’re well into your career, employers want to see your work history and how it makes you an excellent fit for the role. Your education is important, but hiring managers want to know right off the bat if your work background has prepared you for this position. Oh yeah, and unless you are a recent grad, you can safely take your GPA off your resume.
Our friends over at Indeed created a great visual of the basic formatting of a resume. Take a look:
Clean and professional presentation
Don’t underestimate the power of the presentation of your resume. If a hiring manager is going through a stack of resumes and sees a hot mess on paper, they probably will pass on your without even looking at your qualifications. Allow for plenty of whitespace with good margins. Use an easy-to-read font and nice headings so a recruiter or hiring manager can quickly scan your resume.
And most importantly, don’t try and cram everything on a single page. It’s perfectly fine if your skills and experiences spill over to a second or third page (if you have enough experience). The cleaner your resume looks, the better first impression you create!
Revise your work experience
If you’re an established professional, it may be time to clean up some of the jobs on your resume. If you’re well into your career, you can safely remove those summer jobs in school or those projects you completed in college. Many experts say to go back only 15 years, but if it’s relevant for the position, it’s probably safe to leave it on. Just be cognizant of your work experience as you progress in your career.
List those hard and soft skills
When writing out your work experience, it is sometimes tricky to illustrate all of your hard skills and soft skills. To ensure that you are showcasing all of those skills that are vital to this position, it’s a good idea to list your most essential skills that match the job description. Try to keep it under 15 skills. However, be sure not to include any skills that you don’t have. The last thing you want to do is get caught in a lie by listing skills you can’t live up to.
Need help Spring cleaning your resume?
These are just a few quick ways to Spring clean your resume. If you’re looking to take advantage of today’s robust job market, now is a perfect time to dust the cobwebs off that resume and make it shine! And if you need some more job-search advice, check out our blog! It’s loaded with resume and interview advice to help you secure a new job this Spring.