A recruiter spends 6 seconds on average reviewing each resume. With such a short window of opportunity, how can you write your resume that passes this six second test? The short answer is: it depends! The 2 key factors that recruiters consider are: a) the length of your resume, and b) the content of your resume.
Resume Writing Tips on the Length of Resume
A good benchmark for the length of your resume is two pages, but this may vary depending on the industry you’re in, the amount of experience you have, and the submittal instructions (if any) on the job ad itself. The consulting industry, for example, has moved towards having a preference for the one-page resume. This can be challenging to write, but you can consider this a test of your abilities to present key information in a clear and concise format. On the other end of the spectrum, the world of academia, medicine, and engineering will likely require a much longer resume in the form of a CV. The CV will include articles that you authored or co-authored, projects you have worked on, and any specific technologies with which you have experience working.
For people who are more seasoned in their chosen profession, a two-page resume may also be a challenge. It is ok to go beyond the two pages (according to most of the recruiters I know), but first ask yourself if the information you have in your resume is critical for telling your story. You may be able to cut back on any irrelevant experience. Don’t forget to follow the instructions in the job ad itself, as it may be explicit in the maximum length of resume that the company will accept. This is especially true for companies who accept applications via email. A longer resume will likely take up more room on their email server.
Resume Writing Tips on the Content
The second key factor is the content of your resume. This isn’t limited to the words you use, it also includes the layout of your resume and how visually appealing it is. You must ensure that you use a readable font and have ample margin space. If the reader of your resume is anything like me and has an astigmatism (eye condition), ensure that your page is right justified. Fully justified, or block, text is extremely difficult to read for anyone with an astigmatism. Also, make sure that your resume has a logical flow to it with clearly marked sections for your profile, experience, education, etc. Additional information on these sections will be discussed in the video!
To optimize your resume, use the key words found in the job ad throughout your resume. It is a good practice to review job ads from various job boards and company career pages to pick out any themes. Ensure that you are using the key words truthfully and in a way that highlights your experience.
If you have any questions, comments, or ideas for other videos, please feel free to leave me a comment below or contact me directly through email, LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook!
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Until next time, Happy Hunting!
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