The Perfect Resume: All You Need To Know
When your resume lands on a recruiters desk—or computer screen—chances are they will only look at it for about 30 seconds. In order to stand out, you need to make sure you are properly and perfectly representing yourself. This post is full of my tips and tricks for solid content and functional formatting for the perfect resume.
- Be honest: No recruiter expects to open a resume that says you ran the world. If anything, it is a huge turn off. I had a boss tell me that the main thing they look for is real experience. They want to read what you actually did, not read a glorified version. The perfect resume shouldn’t describe the perfect person; it should describe you!
- Alter content based on the job: Every job is different, and every job looks for different things. This means you should have a resume for all the subjects of jobs you are looking for to highlight your relevant talents.
- Keep it direct: If you did a few amazing things, that’s great! Highlight them in as few words as possible to ensure you get the point across. The last thing you want if for a recruiter to be reading filler words instead of your main point.
- List your GPA: This one is a bit controversial. Some people will say not to if it is below a certain level, but unless it is so low, I would say to list it. Whenever I see a resume without one, I tend to think it is lower than it probably is.
- Don’t list dated information: What date is too old is totally up for debate. That said, if you feel you have more to say about more recent activities, that means it is time to delete the high school material.
- Use strong verbs: Each bullet point should be a strong verb. Something to catch attention and truly show the work you did. Examples include: supervised, developed, managed, collaborated, assisted, created, etc.
- Make correct use of past and present tense: Past work and activities should be in past tense, present should be in present tense. This seems obvious, but make sure to triple check this for the perfect resume. One wrong verb can look super sloppy.
- Include hobbies: Hobbies help to jumpstart real conversations. If you have similar interests, you can have a wonderful, memorable discussion.
- List in hierarchical order: One of my biggest pet peeves is when I see people list things in the wrong order on a resume. Your high school should not be listed above your college, and your leadership experience should not be above your work experience unless it is truly more relevant.
- Headings should be bold: Some headings I have seen on resumes aren’t very easy to spot. You want to make sure that your resume is clearly split up. This will help because some recruiters might only care about work experience, while others might care more about leadership. If your resume is easy to scan, this will help them find the information they want and look more favorable on you.
- Maximize white space: Making your resume scannable is a huge necessity, so be sure to leave white space on your resume. This means keeping normal 1 inch margins and a normal 11 or 12 pt font.
- Use the same number of bullet points per experience: This is not a necessity, but it does create good balance on your resume. I recommend doing it if you can!
SAMPLE: perfect resume
What do you do to stand out in a sea of resumes?