Recently I was consulting with a close friend who is applying for a new job. My initial thoughts about his resume were good. He got right to the meat and potatoes by describing his related work experience. From what I could see there wasn’t any fluff… but then again, my knowledge is limited about his background and the job he was applying for.
Some key points that I passed on to him were that there is too much for a hiring manager to absorb in a 1 minute time frame. Most of those who do the initial “sifting” of resumes only devote 1 minute at most to look at a resume… which determines if they get an interview… or not.
This being said, the purpose of a resume is just to get you in for an interview. Nothing more. Nothing less. It is the only piece of advertising that you get to sell yourself and it is “ocean front property!”
The goal of your resume is to quickly accentuate the qualifications of yourself in 1 minute. So from a design standpoint, my friend’s RELEVANT experience and qualifications should leap off the page. I capitalized “relevant” because the hiring manager only cares about the position they are hiring for and if you are going to be a potential fit. If you have something that is not relevant, why list it? It could potentially distract the manager during their 1 minute and then you don’t get an interview.
Aside from listing relevant experience, I suggested to him that he needed to have some sort of “summary” at the top of the resume that brings everything together. This summary should also be relevant to the position that you are applying.
If you are wanting to continue reading about resumes, job hunts, etc. check out the following posts from The 99%: