A resume is the most important tool in your marketing and branding toolbox, but most people are lazy and do a not-so-great job of writing one. Their resume looks like everyone else’s, includes generic duties and responsibilities, and invariably flies under the radar of a recruiter. Boring resumes simply don’t get noticed. They go straight into the black hole. You need to create an excellent one (and it’s really not that hard—I promise!).
Think about how recruiters see your resume. They typically spend less than six seconds on each resume they review—six seconds! That’s not a lot of time. At all. If you’ve gotten through the black hole and a real person sees your resume, congratulations! That’s a huge win. Now you need to have a kick-ass resume that lasts past those first six seconds and gets you an interview.
- Include job wins- Your job responsibilities are not job wins. Your “wins” are your accomplishments while in a specific role.
- It’s a numbers game. If you have something to quantify (i.e., Increased membership by 10% or managed budgets between $5 to $15k), quantify it.
- Cater your resume to the job you want. A resume is not one size fits all. Cater yours to the job you’re interested in.
- Keep it to one page—no excuses. It’s highly unlikely that you’ll ever need more than one page. Edit it down and include bullet points to make it easy to skim.
- Use keywords for easy search. Many companies use applicant tracking systems (ATS), to help them go through the thousands of resumes they get.
- Get creative Most recruiters have software to view a bunch of resumes at once. Find a way to make yours stand out. It’s imperative if you’re in a creative field, but even if you’re not, you still want yours to shine a little extra than everyone else’s.
- Don’t forget your contact info. Be sure to include your phone number and email address so a recruiter can easily contact you.
- Include your internships and volunteer experience. You might be thinking, “But, I don’t have a ton of actual job experience, what should I put on my resume?” It’s all good. You’re just starting out.
- Don’t submit it without editing it. This may go without saying but ALWAYS spell check. Have a friend edit it. Have your mom read it.
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