There is nothing more aggravating than creating a resume that someone is going to pick apart. Last semester, I was asked to turn in my resume for a grade in two different classes. When one professor would say one thing, the other professor would say the opposite. I learned two things. 1) People are just really picky and there is no one right way to create a resume. 2) There are things that should be consistent in every resume. I’m going to share some of those things with you today.
1. Correct tense. When creating your resume, most of the time your jobs should be in chronological order with your current or most recent resume at the top. If you are currently in a position, your responsibilities should be in present tense. For example, your resume should read “Update and schedule content for social media channels as needed” if you currently are employed in that position. Your duties should read “Updated and Scheduled content for social media channels as needed” if you no longer holding the position.
2. No periods. Your job responsibilities should start with an action word, not I. Your responsibilities are bullet points, not sentences. This means you should leave the period out, period.
3. Action words. Each bullet point should start with a powerful action word to explain what you did under that job title. These verbs should be powerful.
4. No repetitive words. Get out the thesaurus! No where on your resume should you have the same powerful action word. I had one professor extremely picky about this. I lost points on my resume for using “create” and “created.” Get creative but make sure you still make sense.
5. No template. This is the most preached thing I learned last semester about my resume. Do not use a template. I don’t care if they seem easy to use; They are not your friend. They make editing your resume difficult and employers hate them. Avoid them!
6. Align your dates. All of the dates on your resume should be on the same side of your page. On my resume, the dates of my jobs/experience are listed on the right side of the page and are perfectly aligned. This includes my graduation date at the top of the page listed in education.
7. Save as PDF. When sending your resume to an employer, you should always send it as a PDF. How many versions of Microsoft Word are there? Exactly. How long will the employer spend piecing together your crazy formatted resume? You might as well start applying somewhere else.
8. Never send the same resume twice. Each resume is a masterpiece. I know what you’re thinking, “It takes forever to create one resume and you’re saying I need one for every job application.” Let me explain. I have one general, super detailed resume. It has every single responsibility that I did under each position. When applying for a job, I look at the responsibilities under the job description and see which responsibilities I have experience doing. I then piece together my personal experiences from my general resume to match the description of the job I’m applying for on a resume specific to the job I’m applying for.
What tips do you have for the perfect resume? Share your thoughts and ideas in the comment section below.