We've all been there. The times where you spend hours on perfecting your resume and highlighting your qualifications, send resume after resume to dozens of prospective employers, and still left job-less with no upcoming interviews. This burn-out process can be exhausting and discouraging – but don't give up! We've uncovered a possible solution to boosting your job search – and it's easy as pie.
An article from Business Insider April 9, 2012 discusses a study done to determine exactly the ways in which a recruiter views your resume. They determined that “In the short time that they spend with your resume, the study showed recruiters will look at your name, current title and company, current position start and end dates, previous title and company, previous position start and end dates, and education.” (See more from Business Insider here.)
When it comes down to it, the hiring manager will spend very little time reviewing your resume – in fact, research from TheLadders states recruiters spend an average of “six seconds before they make the initial ‘fit or no fit' decision” on candidates.” That's right: six seconds. With that in mind, take a look at your resume – does yours really give the best first impression of you from a six second glance? Our guess is probably not. We're here to help you with these 6 simple, easy-to-follow steps to helping YOU get noticed and find your dream job!
1. Choose a basic, professional font.
All too often, applicants try too hard to make a resume look fancy – and in fact, it tends to turn off most recruiters. We want to see something clean, organized, and put-together – not your little sister's favorite “girly cursive” font. Basic doesn't imply that resumes have to be boring! However, you can be smart about the ways you design and create the resume using modern, clean header fonts so that it is appealing, yet professional.
2. Bullet points, bullet points, bullet points!
We can't stress this enough. Here at Y.E.S., we see many resumes with huge paragraphs explaining every tiny detail of every single previous position an applicant has ever held. Honestly, we don't have time to read that you “took the mail out every day after answering phones all day and filling out paperwork, yadda yadda yadda..” Cut out unnecessary details, and instead condense your descriptions to a few key bullet points such as “Answering phones,” “Filing” “Administrative paperwork,” etc. It doesn't need to be lengthy to be impressive, and too many words will bore the recruiter and your resume will go straight to the recycle bin without a second glance.
3. Choose relevant information.
Keep your resume focused! Sure, you had a part-time job at a fast food restaurant in high school, worked a two week temporary summer job doing landscaping, and maybe did a little babysitting here and there. However, this information really isn't applicable to the administrative position you've applied for with an up and coming law firm, is it? Instead of listing each individual job, consider potentially including pieces of your experience under a “Skills” header. For example: Instead of listing your fast food job, list “Customer Service” as one of your skills.
4. Include your contact information! All of it.
We don't mean to list your cousin's sister's best friend's address where you occasionally spend weekends. However, recruiters need to be able to contact you! We are always shocked at the number of resumes that come into our inboxes listing only an email address. Often we'd love to call and speak with you over the phone, conduct a phone interview, or determine your phone manner. In addition, some recruiters will email specific job descriptions before an interview – all of that information is great to have right at the recruiter's fingertips.
5. Don't forget key words!
If you're applying for a specific position, it's always handy to throw in a few bullet points listing some of the descriptive words used in the job ad or listing. For example, if a company is looking for an IT professional with HTML and CSS coding experience, be sure to place those under your “Skills” section or highlight your experience from previous jobs. This helps catch a recruiter's eye and directly link you to the position they are hiring for.
6. Highlight your experience and qualifications in ONE page.
Would you believe if we said we've seen 8 page resumes? Seriously. Believe it. We know we've touched on it a bit, but nix the two or three paragraph descriptions per job and refer back to tips #2 and #3. Recruiters just don't have time to spend on 8 pages of a resume, plus your cover letter, references, or whatever else you've included. One page is plenty to highlight your qualifications for the position – past that, you can discuss your experience in more detail when they call for an interview! Again – more words are NOT always better and can often hinder your job search.
Looking for work? Submit your newly-perfected resume to apply for one of our many openings at http://yesjobs.co!