Table of Contents
- How to Write Powerful Resumes
- 1. Concise
- 2. Objective and Quantifiable
- 3. Action-Oriented (CV, RESUME & COVER LETTER ACTION WORDS)
- 4. Easy-to-Read
- 5. One or Two Pages
- 6. Position-Relevant
- 7. Tells Enough without Telling Too Much
- 8. Incorporates Feedback from Others
- 9. Internet-Ready
- 10. Attention-Grabbing
In today’s workplace, having a well-written resume that’s always ready is an important part of career planning. In this article we will be discussing 10 laws you how to employ to develop a resume that highlights your qualifications for the job you want.
How to Write Powerful Resumes
Resumes should be:
1 . Concise.
2 . Objective and quantifiable.
3 . Action-oriented.
4 . Easy-to-read.
5 . One or two pages.
6 . Position-relevant.
7 . Tells enough without telling too much.
8 . Incorporates feedback from others.
9 . Internet-ready.
In as few words as possible, make your points short and concise. The fewer words the better. Instead of saying something verbose and opinionated such as, “I am the best procurement manager that ever walked the face of the earth.” State something such as, “Reduced procurement expenses by 15 percent.” Now that is short and sweet! It’s also much more objective!
2. Objective and Quantifiable
Nothing will turn off interviewers more than a resume besieged with opinions and essays. Stick to the facts. If you were tremendously successful in eliminating wasteful spending in your previous job, then state something such as, “Reduced expenses by 35 percent.” This comes across as powerful and factual. Showing a quantifiable result such as, “Reduced overhead by X%” is the best way to advertise, loud and clear, that you are a great cost-cutter.
3. Action-Oriented (CV, RESUME & COVER LETTER ACTION WORDS)
The best resumes contain action words. Action words bring your experience to life and get you noticed.
3.1 COVER LETTER ACTION WORDS
Often people cram so much information on their resumes that the reader has no clue where to start. Some candidates put so many bullets on their resumes that the interviewer can’t possibly tell what is important. The reader should be able to find relevant and interesting information quickly.
5. One or Two Pages
I am a big advocate of a resume being curtailed to a maximum of two pages in length. Why? Because I can’t scan a resume longer than two pages in 15–30 seconds and neither can anyone else. (The only value of a multiple-page resume is that it weighs more when wadded up, thus providing a better chance of making the basket into the garbage can on the first try.)
Many resumes are muddied with personal items that have no relevance to the reader. As a result, people often put themselves at a disadvantage before they get the chance to interview. If something personal needs to be said, say it in the interview. People have been known to put interests, hobbies, political ideology, and even religious beliefs on the resume. This is unwise.
7. Tells Enough without Telling Too Much
Don’t tell more than you need to when creating a powerful resume. A great resume should contain only sensible information. The following are some of the things to avoid putting on your resume.
Don’t Ever Put Salary Information on Your Resume
You will put yourself at a great disadvantage. It can only hurt you. If your compensation is too high, you will be rejected without even having the chance to sell the company on why you are worth it. If your compensation is too low, hiring managers will not think you have the skills or confidence necessary for the job, and reject you. If you are in the ballpark, then you have placed a cap on what your job offer can be.
Do Not List Weaknesses on Your Resume
I know this sounds crazy but many people unknowingly list weaknesses on their resume. They then wonder why they can’t get interviews. Weaknesses include jobs where you unintentionally lasted only a short time (less than three months) and any other information that could negatively reflect on you as a person. Keep the resume focused on business.
Do Not Give Away All of Your Best Information
Save some great zingers for the interview! The resume is the advertisement that gets you the interview. Just as most people don’t buy a product solely because of its ad, you will not get the job just because of your resume. However, if you have a powerful resume, you will certainly get many more interviews.
8. Incorporates Feedback from Others
The most important thing you can do before you distribute your resume is to proofread it. Use your word processor’s spelling and grammar check. Then, have others critique it. Sometimes you can get too close to your creation and miss obvious mistakes that your software does not catch.
More and more companies are asking for resumes to be sent electronically (via e-mail). Others are creating standard electronic forms that can be filled out on their Websites or at kiosks in their facilities.
To maximize efficiency, many firms use a computer to read resumes first. Computers decipher which resumes should be reviewed by using pre-selected criteria based on a defined subset of keywords and phrases.
So, how can you create a technology-friendly resume?
Use Industry and Job-Related “Buzzwords”
Because computers often scan resumes before humans do, it is important to use industry buzzwords or keywords on your resume. Examples of keywords for computer industry professions are “operating system,” “network management,” and “uptime.” Examples of “buzzwords” for legal professions are “litigated,” “class action,” “awarded,” and “negligence.”
As in an advertisement, your resume must look good to immediately grab the attention of interviewers. Have others read your resume and give you pointers. See if it grabs their attention. Look at your resume a day or two later to get a fresh perspective of it. Then, if after a few weeks you still haven’t gotten a job yet, review it again.
With the passing of time you often gain different ideas on how you can make improvements. I also suggest looking at other people’s resumes. The best way to do this is to go to networking events and swap resumes with others.