A resume is a document that makes your first impression on the employer and helps you getting an interview call. But if a resume is not catchy and does not contain all important information then hiring personnel will throw it away, because hiring managers usually have to shortlist candidates from hundreds of resumes for a given job position in the company. Therefore, we can say that, they spend an average of 30 seconds on each resume while shortlisting suitable candidates.
So, what are the main points to focus while writing down your resume, in order to impress hiring managers within 30 seconds?
It’s highly recommended to especially sit down and write a good resume, spend as much time as you like on it, firstly make a rough draft – consider your work experiences, duties performed, your skills and achievements etc. then write it down.
Following are the key points to keep in mind while designing a resume:
Concise and Comprehensive! Be brief, but make sure what you are writing is easily understandable and relevant to the post you are applying for. One or two pager resumes are in fashion now.
Adding Keywords: Don’t forget to add keywords that are already given in the job description by the employer, when you are designing your resume for a specific job post. It increases your chances for getting shortlisted against hundreds of resumes. Plus, its also beneficial in digital applications as hiring managers will simply find those keywords in your resume by simply pressing ctrl+F, to save time and energy.
Contact Details: Don’t forget to add your personal contact number (which is accessible all the time, especially in working hours), your email address that you use regularly and you can also add your residential address if you want to.
Professional Photograph: Candidate’s photograph on resumes are usually required these days, some companies especially ask for an attached photograph. So, make sure that picture you are attaching should be captured by a professional photographer in a studio and is a professional headshot.
Career Summaries or Objectives: Try using action words in your career objective and try to relate the objective with the company’s goals in which you are applying. This will give them a good first impression. But it should not exceed 2-3 lines for beginner’s resume. And one accurate line is enough for a person having more than 3 years of experience.
Objectives like “Seeking a role as an investment analyst to advance my career in the financial industry.” Makes you look self-centered. An employer always looks for a loyal employee and not selfish. So, avoid writing such direct objectives, instead link them to company’s objective, tell them what you want to do and how will you be beneficial for them, if they hire you.
Work Experience: This is the most crucial part in a resume. Start with your present job – make your “job title” a heading, then write company’s name and time period of your experience below the heading and then mention your core duties in bullets form. That gives hiring manager a quick overview of your job and duties that you are performing and have performed.
Try to write your job duties/responsibilities in such a manner that it sounds like achievements. For example, instead of writing “workshop trainer” directly, give it little detail that allows you to demonstrate your skills, such as “conducted 20 workshops in more than 5 cities and trained 500 plus people.”
Areas of Expertise: Now, many people mention 10-20 skills under this section, whereas only 3-5 skills should be mentioned which you really have, as it’s quite logical that no one can reach the expert level of more than ten skills. For example, Management, Client Service, and Finance are enough. You can make sub-headings for other rest of the skills that fall under the same category – like, handling customer queries, maintaining sheets, representing company etc. can come under Client Service skill.
Other Skills: Rest of your skills will come under this heading. Let’s say you are an IT engineer but you can also design in different software so, mention software names such as Adobe Photoshop, Coral draw etc.
Achievements: This section also needs a careful consideration and requires creativity. Mention all your accomplishments in your current and previous organizations, also in your educational period and other life achievements that can be beneficial for you in getting a job. For example, buying your own home from your savings is not an achievement to mention in a resume, but winning the first award in a graphic design competition is important if you are applying in an advertising agency or graphic designing company.
Educational Qualification: Start with your latest degree – simply mention your degree name, year and institute name. You can also mention your grades and CGPAs if they are good enough to make an impact.
And most importantly – Stay honest and be true in your resume!