How to Make the Perfect Resume

Posted by John Carroll on Friday, August 30, 2013 Under: Job Search
The title of this article is deceiving. If you’re looking to create the perfect resume that sums up everything you’ve ever done throughout your career, then you’re in for a brutal truth: there is no such thing as a perfect resume. In fact, resumes that contain too much information may be too dense for the hiring process, which often involves a hiring manager giving an initial brief overview of a resume to see if the candidate is a good fit for the job. If your resume is too long or too wordy, the hiring manager may miss important aspects that you intended to highlight, and will therefore not recognize you for something you may actually be very qualified for.

Resumes are subjective, and they should always be tailored to the job you are applying for. Always remember to thoroughly read the job description and edit your resume to reflect aspects of the job description to show you are qualified for the role. If you are an Administrative Assistant applying for an Office Management role, try to edit your resume to incorporate as many office management duties as possible. Even try and use key words like “office management” a few times in your resume content, by using phrases like, “performed office management duties, including processing reports and managing vendors,” for example.

Using key words that are found in the job title or description is important for another huge reason; since many resumes are pre-screened by computer software called an applicant tracking system, a computer will rank you as less qualified for the job if your resume does not have certain key words found in the job title or description. Formatting your resume neatly with a clear division of sections is also important so the computer can read your information easily; we’ll talk more about formatting in a minute.

The title of your position can also matter as well. If you are in a position that holds different titles—for example, you might be an Office Manager as well as an Executive Assistant to a senior executive—make sure to edit your job titles to something that most closely matches what position you are applying for.

Don’t report anything on your resume that isn’t accurate, however. Picking and choosing different important aspects of your jobs to include on a resume is one thing, but lying on your resume is never something you should do. Every interviewer will expect you to know your resume and experience inside and out, so if you’re not being honest, an employer will know, and that could cost you a great job opportunity.

Finally, make sure to keep your resume concise, clear, free from any grammatical errors, and formatted in a professional way that’s pleasing to the eye. Make sure your resume isn’t overly formatted to where it becomes distracting; at most, try and keep it to two fonts: one to use for your name, titles of sections, and other important headings, and the other for content. Consistency is key, so make sure all margins are aligned the same way and all font changes follow the same patters (for example, if you italicize one job title, italicize them all). All bullets should be the same symbols, and different sections should be clearly divided by making good use of white space.

Having a professional and well-tailored resume will make all the difference when applying for jobs you really want. Don’t always use the same resume for every job application—make sure you take some time to edit your resume to fit the position as closely as possible and explain why you’re qualified. You’ll be glad you did!

Have questions or concerns regarding our blog posts? Contact Rachel Cerrone, Recruiting Coordinator, at rcerrone@watsondwyer.com with your comments!


In : Job Search 


Tags: resume