Every job hunter ask themselves, “What can I do to get my resume read?”. Google the term resume writing and a dizzying array of websites come up. Thousands of different takes on what makes a great resume. We have taken the time to ask our employers and read tons of great advice so we can give you the most concise methods for getting your resume read by prospective employers.
No matter the position you seek or your experience level here is what you need:
- One size does not fit all. Be prepared to have multiple resumes tailored to the job you seek. Many times we will look at a candidate for a client and wonder why they are applying for a particular job, even though their resume doesn’t list the necessary qualifiers. After speaking to the applicant we find out there is information they are missing, because they originally started shopping for a different type of job and only have the relevant information for their original goal job.
- Location, location, location. Skip the wordy objective paragraph at the top of your resume and get right into the heart of your experience. Employers are trying to read through dozens of resumes and are likely to skim for the information they want. Make it easy to find. The most important information to an employer is how ready you are to to handle the position they offer. The best way to demonstrate that is with relative prior work history. If your work history is at the bottom of your resume it may never get read!
- Ditch the fancy font. Recruiting companies and employers use applicant tracking systems (ATS) to collate applicants and their resumes. A resume in an odd format (only use Word) with fancy font may not even be able to be read by the ATS. Employers with lots of applicants will simply skip over an application that cannot be read by their system. They will not take the time to contact an applicant and request something else.
- Use real data. It isn’t enough to say you were the sales leader, or had create customer satisfaction numbers. Give an employer hard numbers to substantiate your claim. Quantify how many thousands or millions of dollars you had in sales. Document your actual customer satisfaction rating. Everyone says best sales numbers, most don’t back it up.
- Check your address, email, number, and typos. Be sure your resume has your full contact info, including present address, cell number, and email. We receive applications every day with wrong addresses, and regularly employers will tell us to reject the candidate if they cannot even bother to update their resume with their present address. Applications without contact info are routinely rejected. Employers aren’t going to work to get a hold of a candidate.
- Page 1 is all that matters. Sell your resume like Amazon sells books, if page one is dull the book never sells. If you have to have a resume that is longer than one page make sure the info that will really matter to the employer is in the beginning. If they aren’t convinced your resume is worthwhile on the first page everything after that doesn’t matter.
Happy hunting for your next perfect job!
H Gregory Gershman – Managing Partner – Recruitment HQ