Hiring managers don't usually have the time to read every application carefully, so you should create a resume that captures their attention at a glance.
If you are looking for a job or trying to change career paths, you are probably creating or updating your resume. Here are four universal rules for you to keep in mind:
1- Cover the basics
Your resume should represent your most relevant skills and accomplishments in an organized way. Always include the following elements:
- Relevant educational degrees or certifications: you should include all relevant information depending on the position you are applying for.
- Relevant work experience: don’t include every job you’ve had. Just mention the most relevant experiences and describe your daily tasks in a concrete way. Don’t write long paragraphs, it’s better to use bullets.
- Relevant skills: include languages you speak, the software you use or any additional skill you have that is relevant for that particular position. Also, include the level of that skill, whether it is basic, intermediate or pro.
- Contact information: include your full name, phone and personal email address. You can also include the city you live in.
2- Keep it short
Don’t write too much. Hiring managers don’t have time to read long resumes and if they see a resume takes a lot of reading, they will probably discard it.
Avoid dense paragraphs and use bullets and concise statements instead. Ideally, a resume will be 2 pages max., so make sure you include all the essential information. To help you decide whether something is essential or not, ask yourself if it is relevant for the position you are applying to or not.
3- Use keywords
When it comes to job search, a great way to capture a hiring manager’s attention is by speaking their language. Using strategic keywords will make you stand out as a strong candidate. Also, as you are probably going to load your resume in online job search engines, keywords will allow your resume to be found.
4- Proofread several times
One single spelling error or typo could potentially get your resume discarded. Proofread it several times and make sure it is impeccably written. A great way of doing this is by reading the words one by one backward. That way, you focus on the spelling and not on the meaning, so you are more likely to catch minor mistakes.