DON’T LET RESUMES GET YOU DOWN!
Its junior year of college and here comes the bombardment of adulthood creeping right around the corner. It’s time to buckle down and start thinking about the future. It’s been 16 years getting to this point and now your hard work is going to land you your dream job, right? Well not yet, first you need to create a kickass resume that will speak volumes of your background and experience. And if that’s not intimidating enough but these days its harder to even get a 15 minute phone interview, so you need to make sure this bad boy is on point!
Here are some tips to creating a remarkable resume!
Personal branding is key for all job seekers. I, personally, appreciate how the look and feel is consistent and all the documents go well together. Some of the documents encompassing your personal branding are a resume, cover letter, reference list, and referral letter. This drives the professionalism aspect as well as making you stand out amongst the other candidates. Personal branding is a huge step, so I would start here!
No one ever really knows the right answer to this question: “How long should my resume be?” Probably because there is no right answer. Every company, recruiter, manager will have a different view of what they believe the perfect resume will be, so you will never be able to please everyone. If you can learn to accept this now you will save yourself a lot of frustration on trying to incorporate everyones feeback. I would say a general rule of thumb is: 0-3 years work experience = 1 page, 3-5 years = 2 pages, and anything more you emphasize prior 2-3 employers and list out any prior employers to speak to in an interview.
Its More Than Fluff
Providing the right information is a great way to start brainstorming for your resume. You want it to be clear, concise, informative as well as easy to read. The necessities are; contact information, work experience, skills, charity/volunteer and education. Refrain from “fluff” and stick to what is most important and relevant.
This should go without saying, but stay professional! If your email is an old AIM screenname that has a bunch of “x’s” and “o’s” it’s probably time to upgrade to a new email. Make sure your following standard grammatical rules. Make sure your contact information stands out, typically in the header or footer is a good spot!
Don’t be a Bore!
There are many resources these days to find templates for resumes and personal branding that is beyond Microsoft Word. I typically elect to create my own and I will browse ideas online to get a starting point. However some of the sites that are useful are Creative Market, Etsy and Pinterest, where you can find thousands of templates that are free or available to purchase. Think beyond typical black, white and times new roman font! Let your personality shine through with color schemes, fonts and layouts! Remember to maintain your inspired ideas; you don’t need to be so out there! Your resume should be fun and your esthetic but also clean and easy to read!
Job hunting environment is huge these days, you can’t be naive in thinking that your one of few to apply to a specific role. More often or not any given role can get 30 or 40 qualified resumes easily. So why you? You have to work at it to keep your resume in a short and concise manner. There is a middle ground between being vague and lengthy, find it!
Edit, Edit, Edit
You can never edit enough. I have definitely had some mindless mistakes on my resume for a long time and never noticed until a potential employer pointed it out and just made me look foolish! Take time in-between editing, take a break over a night and get back to it. Your eye will be trained to read what your head thinks and may not always catch the mistakes at first. It never hurts to have others proofread it as well. And edit again. It’s always a good idea to run through this process a few times. This could be a deciding factor whether the employer is taking you seriously as a candidate or you get passed along. I cannot stress enough how important editing is.
Creating a resume is an overwhelming task, but once you have it in a good place you will feel great! Always remember that your resume should be a reflection of who you are as a professional and all your accomplishments. Hopefully you have a better idea of what to expect and how to craft the best resume!
Almost everyone will make a good first impression, but only a few will make a good lasting impression.