The Anatomy of a Great Resume

September 30th, 2014

Hiring managers see hundreds of resumes a day, so it takes a lot to catch their eye. Resumes are looked at for an average of six seconds. How can you grab attention in such a short amount of time?

The Look

Make it easy to read. Leave plenty of white space and use bulleted lists where you can.

  • Use a standard, easy-to-read font.
  • If printed, use plain white paper.
  • Proofread more than once, read it aloud and ask a friend to read it as well.
  • Use clear, straightforward, powerful language.

The Hook

Scrap the generic objective statement. Hiring managers want to know what’s in it for them. Present yourself as the solution to their problems. Replace the objective statement with a summary of your skills or accomplishments, customized to the position you are interested in.

The Details

Remember that a resume is a sales tool and you are the product. Use language and imagery that gets hiring managers engaged and interested. State the job title, then list your accomplishments below. Quantify your contributions where you can:

  • Percentage that you overachieved quotas by.
  • Costs you reduced.
  • Revenue you generated.

It’s not necessary to go into every detail. Resumes don’t get you job offers. Resumes get you interviews. Interviews get you job offers.

The Specifics

Customize your resume every time you send it out. Examine job postings in depth and emphasize the skills and experience that relate directly to their needs. If the employer is looking for a leader, include accomplishments that demonstrate your leadership skills. If they need an analyst, highlight your applicable skills.

The Double-check

Scan your resume for red flags. Are there any gaps? Anything that stands out negatively – that doesn’t fit with the rest of the narrative?

The biggest resume mistake you can make is thinking that you are done. Your resume should be a dynamic, changing document that adapts to any job that piques your interest.

Need additional expertise on crafting a great resume that garners the attention you deserve? Contact the recruiting experts at Select Group, Inc. We can connect you with hard-to-find opportunities and prepare you to win the job. We look forward to hearing from you!

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