Hello! A warm welcome to our blog. Did you know a lot of resumes get thrown out at first scan due to minor errors? In this article we provide you pointers into writing a winning resume that lands you the job you are aiming to get.
Resumes and CVs are often used interchangeably, however, resumes are often an overall summary of your work experience while CVs are usually more detailed. Here are some tips on how to compose either your resume or CV to get past the review and shortlisted into the interview stage.
1. Make it short and sweet
On average a recruiter or hiring manager will get 250 resumes per job post. Most are then mostly scanned by an automated system then seen by a hiring manager. It usually takes only 5 to 7 seconds to scan one resume. Out of all the resumes received, only about 4 to 6 candidates are passed on to the interview stage.
This is why it is important to make sure your resume is short, to the point and sells your skills well. As most recruiters do not have time, a long CV or resume is easily discounted. It is optimal if your resume is one page long and up to 3 pages maximum given the length of your experience.
2. Adapt it to the job description
Your resume as your selling point for the particular job you are applying to. While keeping it short, make sure to align your resume with what is required in the job description. You can do this by including only the relevant information for that job and adding the key words and skills mentioned in the description that you possess.
You may have extensive or varied experience in different areas. However, including every other detail will simply lengthen your resume and show recruiters that you may not have read the job description well. Keeping it focused on your relevant skills and experience will help you get through automated systems and ensure that your resume is relevant to the job at hand.
3. Have good structure, flow and grammar
Making your resume easy to read and digestible will increase your chances of getting shortlisted. The key elements to a professional resume are contact info, summary, skills, experience, education, extra activity, interests and references. These support the reader in forming a complete picture of you and your qualifications.
No matter your experience, bad spelling or grammar will mean that you either do not have the skills or do not care enough to use tools to make sure your resume is professional. Good spelling and grammar are critical in your resume as a slight error may lead your resume to get thrown out by an automated tracking or give a hiring manager a bad impression.
4. Use bullets, verbs and numbers
After listing your relevant experience and education, it is helpful to put a brief summary of your duties or achievements in bullet points under each section. This provides the reader with a summary of your activities without having to read through a narration. Verbs and action words provide a quick insight into your activities with sentences beginning with words like “established”, “led”, “undertook” and “supervised”.
Moreover, adding numbers and data to your experience will help you backup your achievements in a concrete way. While anyone can state that they completed a certain goal, noting the measurement of that goal will impress the person reading your resume.
5. Be honest and seek feedback
It may seem alluring to embellish your skillset or up your experience to land the job. However, exaggerating or lying on your resume will backfire on you as you will have to explain or back up your statements in the later stages of recruitment. Once a hiring manager or recruiter realizes you were not honest, it will lead not only to losing the job but getting a bad reputation for future work.
Being honest from the start will make sure you start on a clear footing with your potential employer. It may help to show your resume or CV to colleagues, relevant professionals in your field or recruiters. A second eye will provide you with insight into what you could have missed or what you can adjust to land the job.
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