Your resume is often the first way a potential employer will judge whether you are a top candidate for a job. A resume is a valuable tool to highlight your employment history, training and the skills you bring to a new position. But a poorly written resume, or one that contains even the slightest error, can give a hiring manager a reason to discard you from consideration. It’s crucial not to give hiring managers any reason to toss your resume out of the stack, especially when you’re going after a position that several other candidates want. Think about it, if you’re reviewing 30, 40 or 50 resumes you’ll be looking for anyway to thin the pile. So don’t give them an easy rejection.
Crafting the perfect resume isn’t a difficult task, especially if you follow our steps. We’ll assume that you’ve found a good design.
Below are six steps to ensure your resume is flawless:
Make sure your job history is updated and correct. Be sure to list what you’ve actually done for an employer and how you’ve helped solve problems or take ownership of a task.
2. Spell Check
This may seem like an easy one but it is crucial. Read back through your resume carefully, and look for any spelling errors. Double-check the spelling of company names and titles. Do not rely solely on the spell checker to catch any errors.
3. Check for Consistency
You need to make sure that you’ve followed a pattern when it comes to things putting words in bold and italics. Have you bolded the first and second company names but not the third? Pay attention to the places you have used italics, underlines or bold font and make sure you are consistent throughout your resume.
Look for keywords in resume that match the job description. Have you reviewed the job description looking for keywords that they use that you should incorporate in your resume? Many companies will use a search function to filter through resumes quickly for candidates that match what they are looking for.
5. Check Punctuation and Grammar
Review all uses of contractions and apostrophes. These can easily be confused (you’re and your as an example). Also, don’t use exclamation points! No hiring manager wants to read a sentence as if you’re screaming at them. Check to make sure you’ve placed periods and commas where they should actually go, or if you even need them. Be sure you’re used consistent capitalization and not capitalized words that don’t need to be.
6. Ask for Help
Finally, have someone else proof your resume. By the time you’re ready to submit it, you’ve should have reviewed it many times. Having a fresh set of eyes read through the entire document, looking for any errors, consistency and overall flow will pay off. It’s almost a guarantee that there’s going to be something you missed or thought you changed.