So you’ve got the basic structure of your resume in order, what’s next? In order to set your resume apart from other similarly qualified candidates, you have to pay attention to the details of your resume.
Read our handy guide to the finer points of resume writing, along with some common mistakes to watch out for.
Top Resume Tips And Advice
- Many recruitment agencies (and indeed, some larger companies) use special software to scan applications for certain words and phrases, which are called ‘keywords’. To maximise your resume’s chances of being found, it’s a good idea to make sure your resume contains key words from the job description, or from your role and industry, to ensure it passes the first round of checks. Common keyword examples include ‘project management’, ‘business development’, ‘customer service’, ‘account manager’, ‘software development’ and ‘leadership’, amongst many others. Look closely at relevant job listings to see which words are repeated, and weave them into your resume and cover letters.
- Avoid using any unusual fonts that might be difficult to read or that might not display correctly on someone else's screen: Arial, Times New Roman or Calibri are the safest options.
- Address any obvious gaps in your work history by writing a brief explanation where appropriate (perhaps you were travelling overseas, had a child or went back to university).
- When writing a resume, consider avoiding long lists of ‘responsibilities included’ statements. Instead, focus on your actual achievements, and begin each with a dynamic action word or phrase like ‘designed’, ‘coached’, ‘assessed’, ‘undertook’, ‘supervised’, ‘organised’, ‘managed’, ‘transformed’, etc.
- Keep your resume, and each section within it, as succinct as possible. Include the necessary information but do it clearly and concisely using only relevant details. Excessive detail and long blocks of text will not do you any favours, so use a template to help you format your resume and use bullet points to make information easily digestible.
- Get the fundamentals right : just one or two spelling errors in your resume could mean that your application is rejected by a potential employer.