Let's Talk Resumes
There is SO much bad information about resumes. So if you ever want to validate a tool, a product or a service please let me know. I have a very large issue with people who manipulate others during a strong unemployment surge and some of the garbage that is out there infuriates me.
Here is a list of all the common questions I get asked about Resumes. If you don't see your question, either add it as a comment or email me at Daniel@TheHRVault.org
Yes, I offer Resume Writing services - but I do really think the best resumes will come from the author. Still, I can write very good resumes in certain fields and my pricing is based on your level of experience.
I am speaking just of US Resumes, *not* CVs.
1. Basic Form
Your Resume should have four sections, clearly marked
- Your Personal Information (Name, City, Email Address, Prof Links)
- Work or Professional Experience Section
You do not need anything else.
A US resume is an extremely formal document that you want to keep as sterile as possible. The reason being it needs to load through an ATS and the more fancy or colorful your resume is, the higher it will be kicked from an ATS. The only time I suggest making a design or colorful resume is if you are sending it directly to an email address.
3. Bullet Points
Your resume work experience section should be marked in clear bullet points. I don't know where this "paragraph form" thing came from, but stop.
Use bullet points. Start with your most impressive bullet point and go down to the least.
The most ideal way to write bullet points is the formula "What + How = Impact" this should be on at least 2-3 of your bullet points. For later ones, use at least 2 out of 3.
- Achievement 1 (What + How = Impact)
- Achievement 2
- Achievement 3
- Achievement 4
4. Watch Your Language
The words you use can send very strong signals and cues to the reader. The more active and dynamic your language, the stronger the impression you will make. Weaker or passive verbs have the opposite effect. Does your resume use words like "Copied, Called, Notified, Coordinated, Informed" or "Managed, Led, Created, Built, Analyzed, Improved"
5. Use Numerics
Consider the following achievements:
A: "Analyzed several vendors to help implement new accounting software"
B: "Responsible for selection of new vendor for new accounting software implementation, reducing errors by approximately 18%"
When we see a numeric, it gives us context and credibility. Where possible use data, numerics and quantification in your resume. Even if it's just approximating. Just be prepared to defend it.
6. Resume Length
Worry less about a specific rule and focus more on the intent of a resume. It's to convey the most important pieces of information and data to the reader as soon as possible.
What is on your second page? If it's still valuable experience that your reader should know, you can use a second page, just be mindful that the data on the second page is not looked at as thoroughly as the first
This section is for your technical skills, certifications and language. Talk about soft skills (presentation, negotiation, organization) within your bullets.
8. Do I include....?
For all these questions ranging from GPA, hobbies, volunteer work, traveling, etc. Ask yourself this question instead:
"Is it important enough that I want the hiring manager to know this?"
9. What Margin, Font, Spacing, etc should I use?
None of it matters - just make sure it's clear, legible and gives the reader natural breaks
10. ATS Hacking?
This is when you take the job description and paste it into your resume and turn the font white. It doesn't work. Recruiters know this trick and you will be immediately passed and rejected.