When you job-hunt, your resume is the first impression you make on hiring managers. Before you even get to step foot in an interview room or shake an executive's hand, you must first master this vital document to ensure you stand out from the other candidates. Follow these seven tips to make your resume more attractive to potential employers.
1. Create a Customized Resume
Never send the same generic resume for every job. Instead, tailor your resume to suit the job description and requirements, demonstrating to the hiring manager that you have the perfect work experience, job skills and educational background for the position. Scan the job listing for keywords to include in your resume to get started.
2. Quantify Your Data
When describing your achievements, use statistics or figures to back up your statements. If you broke sales records, for example, offer dollar amounts or percentages. Being specific about your significant accomplishments makes it easy for you to outshine other candidates.
3. Offer Company Descriptions
When listing your previous work experience, provide company descriptions for each organization. List each employer in reverse chronological order, and include a brief description that details the company's industry or discusses its products and services. This gives the hiring manager some insight into the experience you hold.
4. Make Use of White Space
Your resume should look clean and uncluttered. A resume with thick blocks of text and little white space is distracting and might cause the hiring manager to miss your message. A professional resume that's formatted properly shows your attention to detail.
5. Focus on the Layout
A resume that is easy to read is more attractive. Stick with a 12- or 14-point font, and choose a professional style, such as Helvetica or Calibri. Use single spacing between each line, left alignment and 1-inch margins all around the document. Always print your resume on plain white 8.5-inch x 11-inch paper.
6. Draw Attention to Your Online Portfolio
Use your resume to its fullest potential by advertising yourself and your work completely. Include a link to your LinkedIn profile or your online portfolio. This gives the hiring manager examples of your work to back up the skills and experience listed on your resume.
7. Proofread, Proofread and Proofread Some More
Never send out your resume until you review it several times. Pay close attention to grammar and spelling. Use spell-checking software, or ask a trusted friend or family member to read through it as well.
Hiring managers spend an average of six seconds glancing over a resume before deciding whether someone is qualified for the position, so it's crucial that your document is scannable and makes your most pertinent information easy to find. Use these seven tips to increase your chances of getting that coveted call for an interview.
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