8 Things To Remember When Writing Your Resume

Your resume can mean the difference between getting called in for an interview or getting passed over. Here are some dos and don’ts to follow that can help your resume stand out from the crowd.

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The window you have to make a solid first impression with your resume is tiny. How small is it? Small enough that recruiters supposedly scan it for ten seconds before making their decision. If it doesn’t catch their eye in that time, it often gets placed at the bottom of the pile.

You may have more experience or better credentials than your competitors. But if your resume isn’t put together correctly, a potential employer may never find out just how good you are.

To put your best foot forward, let’s look at some tips on what to include and avoid in your resume.

Things to Do When Writing Your Resume

 

1. Keep it concise

Chances are, the person skimming your resume has many others to look over too. Keep this in mind when crafting your resume and make it short, sweet, and to the point.

A good rule of thumb to follow is to make your resume one page. You can add half a page to that, but the shorter, the better.

Is one page not enough to list all of your accomplishments? You can overcome this limitation by including links in your PDF resume (which we’ll discuss below) that lead to a more robust portfolio or an online resume.

2. Include action verbs

You can achieve the goal of keeping your resume concise by using action verbs such as “created” or “built.” Beyond getting the point across quickly, such verbs convey a feeling of responsibility and strength you bring to the table.

3. Use white space

A resume lacking white space is hard to scan. If your resume is one massive block of text, the person in charge of hiring may not read it at all. The more white space, the better.

When reviewing your resume, scan it as if you were the employer. Can you get a good gist of what you have to offer in just a few seconds? If so, great. If not, add white space and action verbs, and clean up the text.

4. Email PDFs of your resume

A PDF is perhaps the safest format to use when emailing your resume to someone. Other formats may lead to compatibility issues, which could lead to your resume getting ignored.

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Mistakes to Avoid When Writing Your Resume

 

1. Don’t use “I” or “me.”

While you may feel that avoiding personal pronouns make your resume sound robotic, it’s best to leave them out.

2. Avoid weird fonts

Use a basic font. Fancier ones may be hard to read or many not translate well visually onto other platforms.

3. Avoid using odd, personal email addresses

Do you have an email address that you’ve used since you were a teenager? If it’s something that sounds like a video game username instead of a professional email address, change it.

If you can, make an email address that just uses your first and last name.

4. Overusing keywords

It’s a good idea to include relevant keywords in your resume that describe your field, occupation, or skills, especially when posting it online. Don’t overuse them, however, to the point they sound unnatural.

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