As promised, I’m continuing my tips for job seekers. There are a lot of ways to write a resume, but here are a few very common mistakes that I’ve seen people make recently.
- Lack of focus. Your resume should target a specific job which means you’re going to have to have more than one version. The temptation many job seekers have is to put everything that they’ve done on the resume, in the hopes that whoever looks at it will find something they like. I call this wishful thinking, hoping, or fishing. What you really want, is to have your resume SHOUT out that you are THE ONE for the job. That means researching the company, finding out exactly what they are looking for and ensuring your resume hits these hard.
- Use of industry specific jargon, or lack of clarity around a job title. What is an Administrative Assistant? To some is means clerical help. To others it is an Executive Secretary. Still, others use it to describe an Office Manager. Have someone read your resume to give you feedback on clarity. As a footnote, I know Monster.com and others will review your resume for a hefty fee (hundreds of dollars). Save yourself the money and just give it to a few friends or join a networking group. You can use the money to go out to dinner.
- Lack of bullets. Hiring managers scan resumes. Quickly. When I’ve sifted through resumes in the past, I immediately make two piles. Potentials vs. Not Potentials. Within 15 – 30 seconds, I make a decision on a resume and place them in one of the piles. It the Potential pile is too small, I might make another pass through the other stack to see if I missed something. Obviously if I’m looking at a resume for 30 seconds, I’m not going to read the entire resume, but will be looking for things to jump put. Formatting is key. Ensure your highlights stand out.
All the best!
All the time!