To Land an Interview, Here is What Your Resume Needs

Nancy Anderson
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You have to consider your resume your first impression. Oftentimes, it’s all the hiring manager has to determine whether you’re worth taking the time to interview. So, if you want to land an interview, you need a resume that’s written to impress. Follow these tips to create one.

Include Industry-Specific Keywords

When you write your resume, it’s important to include industry-specific keywords. This way, it’s easier for hiring managers to find your resume online. After all, you can’t land an interview if no one reads your resume. When hiring managers search for potential applicants online, they input industry-related keywords into the job site’s search bar. For your resume to populate in the results, you need to include keywords the hiring manager is likely to search. If you can’t think of any, spend some time reading relevant job postings; they often include several industry-related terms you can include.

Start Each Sentence With an Action Verb

Beginning each sentence on your resume with a distinctive action verb increases your chances of getting an interview by 139.6 percent. Most hiring managers don’t want to read a resume that’s filled with soft, generic wording. After all, anybody can claim they’re a team player. Fluff like this doesn’t tell the reader anything about you. Instead, use strong, specific descriptions that begin with an action verb to grab the reader’s attention.

Use Verifiable Facts

Statements don’t mean anything without the stats to back them up. People tend to use generic jargon they think will make them look better, but vague statements usually work against you. Every point you make needs to include the facts to back up the statement. For example, instead of saying you’re a leader, say your leadership helped your sales team exceed its monthly sales goal by 25 percent.

Make Your Resume Visually Attractive

Use colors, borders, and call-out boxes to draw the reader’s attention to important parts of your resume. In addition to highlighting specific points, the uniqueness makes your resume stand out. Just don’t overdo it. It’s still important for your resume to be easy to read and professional-looking.

Include the Website Address to Your LinkedIn Profile

Place the website address for your LinkedIn profile at the top of your resume with your other contact information. This way, the hiring manager has a way to view even more information about you. Be sure to style your LinkedIn profile so it doesn't reiterate the exact same information on your resume. Instead, the two should complement each other. For example, if you have a sentence on your resume that lists an accomplishment, use LinkedIn to expand on it by including more detailed information.

Ultimately, your resume should make you look like a pro and stand out from the crowd. If you create a memorable resume, it’s more likely the hiring manager will choose to interview you.

Photo courtesy of [marshillonline] at


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  • Christine M.
    Christine M.

    Many thanks for the tips! Will see if it works better

  • Nancy Anderson
    Nancy Anderson

    @Daniel R and @Katherine D - thanks for your comments. Sure can be frustrating but not impossible. You need to beef up your resume as much as possible - showing why you have more experience than any education could provide. You can offer to test for them or to even "work" a few hours just to show that you know your stuff. Some companies will take you up on this. However, if that doesn't work, don't forget about networking. Do you have friends or former coworkers who work at the company you are interested in? See if they can't walk your resume to the hiring manager. @Katherine have you tried using a recruiter who specializes in healthcare positions? That might be your best way in. You have to know that there are others working in the company you are interested in who don't have the requisite bachelor's degree. Try it out and see. You might be happy with the results.

  • Katherine D.
    Katherine D.

    I’m with you, I only have an Associates however with being grandfathered in and my many years of experience of teaching phlebotomy and working as a Clinical Laboratory Technician ( yes I was state certified) I would actually teach others who graduated with a Bachelors degree. It’s quie frustrating.

  • Daniel R.
    Daniel R.

    Nancy, All great points but what about the Education piece? You can have all of the key words for the job but if the company requires a Bachelor Degree and you only have an Associates, you don't make it to the first round. This is frustrating because with my experience, I have forgotten more than many with the Bachelor degree have even learned at this point.

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