Morning fellow HR friends! I was invited to guest blog over at Sparkah on the topic of recruitment and resume writing. This was a great opportunity to share my favorite tips with an entirely new audience. Check out what I wrote for them below…
As unemployment rates continue to drop every month more and more professionals are making their way back into the increasingly competitive job market. New businesses are cropping up at every turn creating an endless wealth of new employment opportunities and many of the jobless are left wondering “Why haven’t I been offered the opportunity to interview for the dozens of jobs I have applied to in the past few months?” The answer: you have a terrible resume! Not to fret, I have a few resume writing best practices and tips that are guaranteed to capture the attention of recruiters and help you land that crucial first interview.
The following is a list of 5 expert tips and best practices for you to ingrain in your brain while thinking about about the recruitment and resume writing process:
1) The average length of time that a recruiter spends reviewing your resume is 30 seconds. Most recruiters review hundreds of resumes for each job position they are trying to fill. Time is of the essence when reviewing applicant credentials and every precious second counts. Make sure your resume is formatted so that it is easy to read, easy to select out key words and contains only pertinent job experience.
2) While most job applicants assume that a resume is an autobiography of their career history and professional experience, a good resume will highlight your relevant and valuable work experience. The key words here are RELEVANT and VALUABLE. If you include work experience that is not related to the position you seek, the recruiter will be distracted by extraneous information.
3) Ideally the length of your resume should be no longer than… 1 page for individuals that have less than 3 years of work experience. If you have been working for more than 3 years or have had more than 3 jobs in a five year span, your resume should be no longer than 2 pages.
4) The most important information on your resume is… your contact information. In order to get an interview for the job you want, the recruiter must be able to contact you. Ensuring that your contact information is easy to locate, read and reference with a simple glance is paramount to your success in the recruitment process.
5) When you submit your resume to a job posting, you should ensure that you…follow all directions in the job posting. Following the explicit directions of the posting is key in securing your place in the recruitment process. In most job postings, the recruiter will tell you what format they would like to review your resume in, who the resume submission should be addressed to and if you should reference a job requisition number or job title. Resumes that are not submitted according to all of the instructions in the job posting do not get reviewed. Point.Blank. Period.
So now that you have read some expert tips from an experienced recruiter and HR professional, it’s time to start revamping your resume. Some things to keep in mind:
Verb tense is crucial – If you are listing job experience for a position that you currently hold, use present tense verbs like “lead, manage, direct, create, etc.” If you are listing experience for a past position, use past tense verbs.
Create and bullet point brief statements related to the work you contributed; short, sweet and to the point is key.
Add a section for notable achievements so that you can “brag” about past wins and show your future employer that you will bring value to their organization.
Create a Professional Profile section as an opener to your resume. A good professional profile will state who you are and what you are experienced in – let the recruiter know why you are a perfect fit for their open position. Example: My professional profile says “I am a dedicated HR professional with experience in recruitment, benefits administration and employee relations.” Professional profiles should list your top 3-5 job functions or skills that will make you a valuable part of the team. If you are a recent university graduate or currently enrolled in school, be sure to address that in your profile. Lastly, if you don’t have any work or internship experience, be sure to mention a leadership role you have taken on and provide a detailed explanation of what you did.
I sincerely hope that these resume writing and recruitment best practices aid you in landing that ever so important interview at the job of your dreams. Good luck
Namaste – Alexandria