Azurine Amelia January 12, 2021 Resume
If you have ever been on a fishing expedition, you know the most successful fishermen use the best, most appropriate bait available. They also have the most lines (and hooks) in the water. A job search is much like a fishing expedition. Your resume represents the bait, and each company that you send your resume to represents a line with a hook that allows you to snag a job. Think of your ideal job as that big fish, the one you can’t wait to brag about to your friends, the one that didn’t get away, and your claim to fame! Just as it is important for a fisherman to use the right bait to attract that big fish, it is imperative that job seekers use the right resume to attract that big job opportunity. During my career as a Corporate Recruiter, I have had the opportunity to review thousands of resumes. Some of those resumes have been stellar; the resume is formatted professionally, well written, and portrays the candidates in their best light. On the other hand, I have also had the unfortunate opportunity to review some of the worst resumes ever written! In fact, some of those resumes were so bad that they have received honorary status on my list of the seven worst things I have ever seen on a resume. These prospective candidates committed what I call the ”Seven Deadly Sins of Resume Writing”:
Rely on Templates or Sample Resumes – If you are surfing the web and looking for a good resume sample or template to use as a guideline for your own resume, make sure the sample you settle on is appropriate considering your background, the industry you’re in, and your career intentions. Because when it comes right down to it, different styles of resumes should be employed in different industries. By way of illustration, a computer programmer’s resume will vary greatly from that of a sushi chef. They both have very different skill sets which need to be highlighted in very different ways in order to be effective. If both those individuals tried to write their resumes in the same format, it would be a disaster. Hiring authorities, respectively, each have their own expectations and some resume formats are better than others at addressing those individual expectations.
Finding a reliable resume writer is the next challenge for anyone who decides it is time to make the investment. A good resume writer needs to have a history of writing and editing experience, along with knowledge of recruiting and hiring practices. What credentials determine an effective resume writer? There are resume writing certifications available and that certainly demonstrates commitment to the job. My background is different than that as I have advanced education and experience as an educator, writer, and author. The most important element is that anyone who works in this type of industry needs to have some evidence of writing experience. Another distinguishing feature is the fee that a resume writer charges. I know of many writers who charge exorbitant fees and then guarantee their resumes will produce jobs or job calls. I do not believe that anyone can guarantee results solely based upon the resume; however, what a resume can do is present the best a candidate has to offer and help generate interest. My clients have told me that after receiving a resume I’ve written they started receiving more job calls. It was then up to them to speak well and encourage the potential employer to consider them further. I have also found that another benefit from having a resume professionally written is that it provides a boost of confidence as the person sees themselves in a better light, as they are reminded of the skills and qualities they possess.
It is important to remember that a resume is your written introduction. Although this short list of ”don’ts” does not completely encompass what to write and what not to write on a resume, prospective candidates who avoid these seven deadly sins of resume writing will avoid common pitfalls and have a better chance of not only catching the interest of the recruiter, but also scoring the interview. Use the right bait and you have a better chance of catching your next big job opportunity!
Profile Summary – It is helpful to include either a well written Objective Statement or Profile Summary near the top of the page. An Objective Statement should be a concise statement outlining what type of employment an individual is seeking, and is preferable for less experienced candidates. Alternatively, a Profile Summary should be used for experienced individuals and clearly outline what the candidate has to offer. A Profile Summary would generally include a high level statement of key expertise plus a few major strengths and achievements. Expertise – It is helpful to follow the Objective or Profile Summary with a section outlining the individual’s primary ’Areas of Expertise’ (also referred to as Core Competencies, Key Capabilities, etc). These are often depicted in bullet point form, and should be clearly aligned with the stated requirements or selection criteria of the role.
While a good resume needs to hit the mark on many levels, it is crucial not to give recruiters any obvious reasons to throw your resume on the early reject pile. Below, I have listed some important items to address to ensure you avoid any obvious or glaring shortcomings, thereby making it harder for recruiters to exclude your resume in early screening.
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