A resume is your first impression to a potential employer, it should be professional, concise, and 100% error free. There are a few things to keep in mind when crafting your resume.
- Keep it simple. The general rule of thumb for a resume is one page for every ten years of experience. If yours is longer than this, seriously consider paring back some of the extraneous information and boiling down to the essentials. If your resume is shorter than this, try to beef it up with more pertinent eye catching information.
- Keeping it simple also pertains to formatting. Keep the formatting clean, and simple, avoid complicated bullets and outline schemes. Keep in mind that the employer may save it using a newer version of Word, or another word processing software and all your formatting could be lost.
- Be proud of your accomplishments and don't be afraid to embellish a bit, but realize that there's a fine line between embellishing and lying. Were you the only Accounts Payable Processor in the Accounting Department? There's nothing wrong with putting the job title "Lead Accounts Payable Processor", but "Accounts Payable Supervisor" might be a stretch. There's nothing wrong with embellishing, but lying will submarine your chances of getting a job faster than you can imagine.
- Proofread, proofread, and then proofread again. Nothing will eradicate your chances of landing an interview than spelling errors, grammatical mistakes, or incorrect information. Proofread your resume repeatedly over the course of several weeks so that you can keep taking an objective, fresh look at it.
- Have a handful of friends/family/colleagues review your resume before you send it out to potential employers. Other folks will be able to spot mistakes or edits that you may have overlooked. Other people will also be able to critique your resume and offer suggestions to help you improve it.
- Never stop updating your resume. Any new promotion you've received, software you've become proficient in, award you've received, or Committee that you chaired should be immediately added to your resume. If your resume is up to date, you can quickly send it out should you hear about a job opening or be laid off from your current job.
These few simple tips can potentially make your resume stand out to the individual reading it. Remember that your resume is the first chance that you have to impress a potential employer, make it a good one.