Often, the first real step to getting a new position is to land an interview, and that relies heavily on the impression left by your resume. Whether you are just beginning your job hunt or are in the middle of your search, making a few tweaks to your resume can help increase your odds of getting called in for the next hiring step.
So, before you send that next resume out the door, consider these tips for getting noticed for all the right reasons.
Keep Formatting Simple
Unless you are looking for a position in a particularly creative field like graphic design, you are better served by keeping your formatting simple. Choose fonts that are easy to read, and limit yourself to just one or two styles. Additionally, keep the size of your font fairly consistent, and only add two or three different sizes to increase impact on key areas.
When in doubt, keep all text aligned to the left. This is how most of the text we view every day is aligned, so it is automatically more comfortable for the reader.
Additionally, once you make a formatting choice, stick with it. For example, if you use bullets in your resume, choose one type of bullet and use only that one throughout the entire document.
Quantify Your Qualifications
When it comes to resumes, numbers speak louder than words. So, if you can add a statistic or amount to the information about your achievements, feel free to do so. Often, it is more impactful to say you maintained a customer satisfaction rating of 98.2 percent than just to say it was a high rating.
Anytime you can back up a statement with concrete metrics, you are likely doing yourself a favor by including them.
Think Like the Hiring Manager
What you want to show and what the hiring manager wants to see may not automatically align. When it comes down to it, you need to put your preferences aside and try to think like the person who is reviewing your resume. Make sure you focus on any guidance you receive from the job announcement. Any skill or experience that is listed first in the announcement, or that is repeated, is likely a priority. Make sure to represent those points clearly.
When a person is reviewing your resume quickly, you need to help them find out what they need to know even if they are skimming the content. Include any keywords that are also found in the job announcement (and relevant based on your skills) as those associated with critical points in the job announcement.
This approach can also help you make it through an applicant tracking system, increasing the likelihood that a person will see what you have to offer.
Review all of your resume content and ensure that every word is relevant to the position to which you are applying. If a bullet point or statement isn’t needed based on the requested skills or experience, consider cutting it.
By making sure every piece of your resume speaks directly to that job, you make yourself seem like a specialist in those areas. And being seen as an expert can certainly help your chances.
If you are looking for more information for improving your resume or are interested in finding a new position, The Advance Group is here to help you find new opportunities. Contact us today and see what we have to offer.