Looking for a new job is like a full time job itself! So make sure you’re making the best first impression possible with your resume. To help keep you on-point, KNF&T Staffing Consultant, Ryane Jackson, shares 8 details hiring managers look for when evaluating your resume.
1. Dates: Include the start date in a (month–year) format. Dates that don’t include months are red flags because the hiring manager is unsure how long your position lasted, if it ended abruptly, or if you were fired. When it comes to the interview, be honest about explaining unemployment gaps in your resume, if you have any.
2. Formatting: Keep it simple — do not go crazy. Do not include photos, special borders, or ‘cool fonts’. In addition, the only resume format that hiring managers truly appreciate for entry level positions is Microsoft Word or PDF. If you have a fancier resume that you really like (for example some people have an online resume featured on their webpage) you should always have a backup Microsoft Word or PDF version. This is because most companies have a database in which they keep your resume and other relevant information (Tax forms, etc.) and most of these databases only accept MS Word or PDF documents.res
3. Education: Not all positions require a college degree. Nevertheless, if you do have one, always list the school, the year(s) and major(s) you were a part of as well as what type of degree you earned (Ph. D, Bachelors, Associates, etc.) If you took classes but did not earn a degree, state that in your resume (example, post the end date as “in process” or “still attending”). In addition, putting your G.P.A on a resume is not necessary to most companies (of course there are always exceptions). However, if you did receive anything higher than a 3.7, it never hurts to include it.
4. Contact Information: If you post your resume online, you need to ask yourself if you want to be receiving phone calls from recruiters. If you include a phone number on a resume you post on Monster, LinkedIn, ZipRecruiter, etc., you will get phone calls for interviews. If you do not wish to be getting these calls, only post your email address. However, if the resume is for a specific job you are applying to directly, DO include a phone number.
5. Grammar: If you misspell worlds this could really make or break your resume. Proof reading, spell check, and getting a fresh set of eyes to look over your resume are all great strategies to make sure your resume is polished.
6. Buzz Words: Certain industries have skills that look really impressive and if you have those skills you should always list them on your resume. Entry level skills would include things like: Microsoft Excel, Adobe Suite, Microsoft Outlook, Salesforce, Public Speaking, Training, Customer Service, Cold Calling, Management, Social Media, Time Management, and more. If you think a skill may sound meaningless or irrelevant, it probably isn’t. For example, as a hiring manager, it is refreshing to see “Punctuality” on a resume because many senior level resumes overlook simple but valuable skills like this that are simply not teachable. You either have them, or you don’t!
7. Volunteer work: If you did even just a day of volunteering, include it. Having volunteer shows that you care about something bigger than yourself and that type of mentality is extremely valuable in a company.
8. Length: Don’t worry if your resume is more than a page. It is more important to include all your skills and relevant work history on a resume than it is to have a “One Pager”. So many applicants leave out important skills and experiences because they are afraid to venture on to a second page. Many resumes are between 2-3 pages and this is typically standard.
Enjoyed these tips? Follow Ryane Jackson on LinkedIn.