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RESUME 101

Published: February 7, 2014 Author: Clearpoint Tags: Job Hunting - Resume Tips

RESUME 101 By Stephanie Hood

As you have likely seen before, Clearpoint's Working Ideas blog has numerous articles that focus on resume tips, which can be viewed here. And after years of recruiting and answering lots of questions regarding resume writing, I thought it might be beneficial to list a few of the basic truths at a glance.

As you review these tips, keep in mind that hiring managers are busy folks, so don't make the manager trying to hire you have to WORK to give you a job½make it easy for him/her!

  • ABOVE THE FOLD: The old newspaper term "above the fold" applies to resumes too! Fold your resume in half from top to bottom. Does anything within the TOP half of your resume's 1st page entice the reader to continue reading further? If not, it's time to reevaluate the information above the fold!
  • OBJECTIVE STATEMENT VS. PROFESSIONAL SUMMARY: The "objective statement" is somewhat dated (and, honestly, it is typically written in a somewhat awkward fragment sentence structure), so consider opening with a professional summary. This is your opportunity to position yourself and tell the readers through which "lenses" they should view your resume. Help them put on their rose colored glasses and see you in the best light!
  • MULTIPLE VS. 1-PAGE FORMAT: If your resume is more than 1 page, do not worry! Historically, resumes were ideally kept to a single page in an effort to not accidentally lose information, which could happen if pages were separated either on a fax machine or on a manager's desk. Do not cut yourself short by abbreviating your experience to the point that the reader cannot glean the value you bring, but remember that only high-quality info should be present.
  • RESUME "REAL ESTATE" CONSIDERATIONS: Do not waste your valuable resume real estate on fluff verbiage like "team player" and "good communicator." Instead, include elements within your resume that SAY those things without explicitly saying it. For example: Successfully led a team of 3 award-winning designers.
  • BIGGER IS NOT ALWAYS BETTER: Large blocks of text typically DO NOT get read. Think in terms of a vignette NOT a novel.
  • BULLET POINTS: These are indeed your resume's "ammunition"½use your bullets!
  • NUMBERS: Measurable results are solid proof that you know what you are doing. Include numbers and show how your work impacts ROI.
  • DATES: List dates of employment in reverse-date order, which means that your most recent role should come first.
  • LONG EMPLOYMENT HISTORY: Have employment history >15 years and don't want to appear "too seasoned?" There are different tips for how to handle that. Call us.
  • REFERENCES: There is no need to state "references available upon request" because that is assumed. That said, you should have your list of references ready to present when they are requested. For consistency, consider using the same formatting style used in your resume.

Closing thoughts from yours truly½

All too often, people wait until they get laid off to get their resumes in order, which is one of the most difficult times to think clearly! Remember that your resume should be somewhat organic in how it develops, so even if you are currently happy in your position, start documenting your current role's duties, accomplishments, and promotions. With that in mind, there is no time like the present!

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Let me guess, now you are excited to get the ball rolling but don't know where to begin? Here us a great resource to get your resume started: http://resume.linkedinlabs.com/

Still want to do MORE research about resumes? These articles provide some additional food for thought!

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