- There are three types of resumes: reverse chronological, functional, and combination.
- In reverse chronological, you start from your latest job position, functional focus on your skills, and the combination is a blend of both.
- Avoid using the passive voice and adding any unnecessary information to your resume.
- Always check your resume before you send it. Fix any grammar and spelling mistakes, and make sure your contact details are correct.
Did you know that it takes an average of six seconds to schedule your job interview?
Studies confirm that hiring managers spend only 6 seconds reading the resume. Thus, creating a well-structured, and eye-catching resume is very important.
Despite popular belief, a compact and straight-to-the-point resume can help you land the job of your dreams better than extensive experience. However, applicants often find one-page resumes claustrophobic or unable to squeeze their working profile into a page. Therefore, in this article, you will find helpful resume-writing tips and tricks that will simplify the process and help you create a stellar resume.
Introduction To Resume Writing
Before you start writing your resume, you need to know that there are different types. Actually, you can structure your resume as you like, but there are three standard forms that look potentially professional and straight to the point. Therefore, here’s what you need to know:
The reverse chronology resume starts with your latest job and achievements. In other words, when using the reverse chronology resume format you begin with the latest job position, and finish with the oldest one. This simplifies the entire evaluation process and makes it easier for more important things to be highlighted.
This resume format is specific and skills-oriented. The only information required for this resume is the skills, and knowledge related to the job description. This allows you to omit the spotty work you might have done throughout that years, that is irrelevant to the company.
When it comes to this type of resume, usually companies specify if this is what they’re looking for. However, even if they haven’t specified and this type of resume works for you better, then you can always use it.
This is the most extensive resume format where you can wrap up your work history, beginning from the most recent position to the oldest, your skills, abilities, and career achievements. It is a blend of the previously mentioned ones.
This resume is currently the standard one, or the one most applicants use and rely on. It allows the applicants to include their skills, knowledge, career achievements, and every relevant field they have mastered.
Common Mistakes To Avoid In A Resume
It might sound simple but writing a resume can be hard and overwhelming, especially if you have a long work history. Without intending to, you may come off as unprofessional or underqualified, which may ultimately cost you your dream job.
To help you out, we picked the 5 most common mistakes you must avoid when writing your CV.
Passive voice is the leading mistake that ruins a good resume. There is absolutely no need to burden the resume with the passive voice which sounds boring and is hard to read. Remember, we want to capture the attention of the recruiters immediately as they may simply skim through your resume.
Therefore, start with an active verb next time, and use the active voice. Not only will you highlight your abilities more efficiently, but you also save more space to add more skills.
Spelling or Grammar Mistakes
You cannot afford spelling or grammar mistakes in your resume if you have finished high school or faculty. Remember this rule because it is standard practice and professional code. Hiring managers know that it was a mistake or that you were in a hurry and not that you’re illiterate, but that is an excuse.
Avoiding fixing the mistakes does not only make you seem lazy but unreliable and someone who lacks attention to detail. Therefore, make sure you reread your resume twice for mistakes to ensure it is error-free.
Unnecessary or Missing Information
Skipping relevant information or adding irrelevant information is another common mistake that makes a resume sloppy.
By skipping information, we mean not including the required personal information. This makes it difficult for the hiring manager to contact you, and they may lose interest. Also, if the company required adding specific information to the resume, and you forgot to include it you risk the chances of them dismissing your potential.
Contrary to skipping, adding unnecessary information is also a big mistake. Choose only the important details that are relevant to the job vacancy. In essence, resumes should be a page long, and stuffing your CV with irrelevant information unrelated to the job will only make it too long to read.
Misused “Other” Section
Applicants regularly misuse the “other” section of a resume and chronically stick to the habit of adding their hobbies in interests.
The “other” section is reserved for your achievements, additional courses you took, and certificates related to the job description. This is your closure of the resume or your final say, so use it as such.
Writing Unrealistic Goals in Objectives
This mistake is evident in applicants without prior experience who have to skip an entire gap in the resume, that is, working experience. However, the absence of experience is replaced with an objective. Applicants should explain why they would be fit for this job in this section.
The evident mistake is writing unrealistic or irrelevant reasons just to fill the space. That includes dream jobs or elaborate language. Instead of a futile fluff explanation, if you lack experience or you are between jobs, specify what makes you a good candidate.
50 Amazing Resume Writing Tips
With the main mistakes aside, we can finally dedicate ourselves to the actual resume writing tips and tricks that make a CV flawless. The list below contains 50 practical recommendations to make your resume more effective and unique.
1: Use the Correct Font
The font you use for your CV must be readable, professional, and practical. The ideal option for your CV is Arial, Helvetica, or Verdana. Stay away from cursive or calligraphic fonts, regardless of how appealing they may look. Not only are they unprofessional, but they are also very hard to read.
2: Use the Correct Font Size
Many applicants, especially beginners, wonder what is the ideal font size when writing their CVs. The optimal font size is 10-12 points. You can pick the most suitable one that makes your CV well-packed and easily read.
3: Research the Keywords
Before writing your resume, take some time to research the keywords related to your job description. If you apply for a content writer, you would want to use SEO specialist, B2B, B2C content, etc. These keywords are prominent in the content writing industry, and you must include them in your resume.
4: Bold The Important Parts
A compact resume highlights the applicant’s skills and makes them stand out. To make your resume more impactful, bold the keywords or the skills required for your job.
5: Provide a Professional Email Address
Hiring managers tend to drop the resume when they notice an inappropriate address, regardless of your qualifications. So, if you still have the same email address since the 6th grade, making a new, more professional one might be a good idea.
6: Keep Your Resume Updated
When writing your resume, every piece of information must be updated and new. Resending old resumes to new companies with old information risks your chances of getting the job.
7: Add the Jobs Relevant to the Position
If you have long working experience, add only the jobs relevant to the new position. Always remember that your resume must be complementary to the new position.
8: Avoid Flowery Language
One of the most important things when writing a resume is to avoid flowery or elaborate language. That means staying on point and avoiding the useless adjectives that make your resume platonic.
9: Make the Middle Section Most Impactful
When writing your resume, you want to include all your strengths in the middle section. That section is where all hiring managers focus their attention, so you want to use it well.
10: Add Specific Numbers and Statistics
Being specific is always a bonus in your resume. If your job can measure your success rate, or target, add the numbers or statistics. For example, taking care of 7 patients daily, writing 1,000 words daily, etc.
11: Leave Margins
When writing your resume, take care of the space you leave before and after headings. The best resume format should be easily skimmable, not cluttered.
15: Avoid Block Style
The experience section can be tricky to structure as you have few lines to pack 20 years of working experience. Plus, it should be skimmable. So the only way to do it is to avoid essay or block-style paragraphs and use bullet points with action verbs.
16: Avoid Generic Sentences
You may have to use a few adjectives during your writing, especially in the skills section. Be careful not to use generic adjectives. They are purposeless.
17: Provide Facts
Depending on the job you’re applying for, you may need to offer facts. Make sure you support your claims with hard evidence that can be traced and confirmed.
18: Use the Job Description as a Guide
For every piece of information you consider sharing, consult the job description and the company requirements. Using the job ad as a template increases your chances of writing a successful and compact resume.
19: Reference the Social Media Accounts
Modern resumes require employees to reference their social media accounts like Linkedin or Twitter. If you apply as an influencer, include your Youtube or Instagram account. This allows the hiring manager to deepen their research about you.
20: Avoid Repetition of the Words
Action verbs may freeze your mind and get you to repeat yourself repeatedly. This is also a no-no; you will have to research synonyms before writing down your experience section.
21: Use Formal Register
A formal register is the only way to resume despite the job position you’re applying for. Often applicants in creative fields use jargon or informal register due to the liberty in their occupation. However, these artists can play with the resume in terms of order. Many companies would most likely appreciate a creative resume, but a well-spoken and professional applicant.
22: Apply Relevant Skills
Using the reverse chronology resume format, you should use the skills section wisely by promoting only those relevant to your job. In other words, you should research the market for relevant skills keywords and reference only those related to the job.
23: Enlist Soft & Hard Skills
We know that some job positions may require more hard skills than soft skills, but both are equally important for the best-qualified employee. Therefore, make sure to add soft skills as well like problem-solving, teamwork, time management, etc.
24: Don’t Limit Your Skills If You Can Support Them
It is very important to keep your CV realistic and promote all your skills. There is no standard number of how many skills you should reference. Therefore, please mention more if you can support them with real evidence, statistics, or numbers.
25: Neatly Write the Education
Although skills-based working environments are more prominent nowadays, education is highly valued. However, only a few present themselves professionally. Start with the latest achievement, write your title and graduation year, and mention the topic only if relevant to the job. Writing your GPA on a resume is also recommended.
26: Specify the Additional Courses
All employers appreciate applicants that pursue their learning capacities after graduation. Courses are just as important as the educational section. Therefore, you should mention them as well. Use the “Other” section for additional courses.
27: Write a Powerful Summary
The summary often catches the most attention, so this part of the resume must be strong. To do so, begin with a hooking sentence where you can provide facts about your career. Keep in mind that it’s a summary, so keep it short. Furthermore, check out the best resume writing software that makes your job easier.
28: Explain the Working Gaps
If there is a gap between positions, especially a bigger one, remember to briefly explain the gap. Employers would surely ask you about it, so it’s better to explain it upfront.
29: Non-Traditional Work is Equally Valued
Sometimes, non-traditional work can also be valuable for the resume but leave it for the “other” section. Be sure to explain your duties to improve the chances of getting the interview.
30: Keep Bullet Points Short
The experience section must be the strongest side, but at the same time, you should not exceed 6 bullet points. You can implement various action verbs and statistics to impress the hiring manager.
31: Take Out Extra Sections if Too Long
If your resume exceeds the second page, it would be best to remove the extra sections that will not affect the value of the resume. That can be the summary section or something from the “other” section.
32: Choose a Presentable Picture
You don’t have to add a picture to your resume. But if you add it, the picture should be presentable or clearly show your facial features.
33: Avoid Controversial Interests
If you’re applying for a job in an NGO, implementing a political interest is not recommended. The same goes for institutions that do not have pollical relations.
34: Always Explain Job Hopping
Companies want reliable workers they can trust. Therefore, if you changed from one company to another quickly, please explain in a few words so that the managers can paint the picture.
35: Avoid Graphs or Graphics
If you want to support a statement or skill you have, please use words instead of graphs because computers still cannot read pictures.
36: Do Not Forget the Driving License
There are many jobs where driving is crucial and, in most cases, an advantage. Therefore, do not forget to mention your driving license if you have one.
37: Check if the Contact Info is Correct
Your address, number, and real location must be updated, and if you’re staying in a different city, please specify because hiring managers may dismiss your case immediately.
38: Consider the ATS
Remember that most big companies put resumes through software that filters the applicants. If you want to remain in the game, you should ensure your resume is error-free, compact, and contains most of the keywords in the ad.
39: Personalize the Resume
Despite offering updated resumes, many applicants in between jobs send the same resume to many companies. You should know that this practice hinders your chance of getting the job you need. Instead, you can research the job ad for keywords and apply them to the resume. The hiring manager will instantly recognize the words and consider your skills.
40: Use PDF Format
The resume you send must be in PDF format. Sending a word document makes you look sloppy and unprofessional. Therefore, make sure to remember this tip and put it into practice.
41: Continue to the 2nd Page
If you have long experience relevant and related to the job position, please don’t hesitate to continue to the second page of the resume. The resume is your introduction in writing, and you must make the right presentation of your skills.
42: Mention the Conferences
The “other” section of the resume is reserved for such career activities. Make sure to neatly reference the conferences you have attended if they are relevant to the job vacancy.
43: Languages are Always Welcomed
Despite the job position you’re applying for, languages will always leave a positive impression on hiring managers. However, you must specify your level of understanding.
44: Writing Down Volunteering
If you used to work as a volunteer during high school or college, you can include this information in the Other section. However, the volunteering should be related to the job you’re applying for.
45: Awards or Acknowledgements
If you ever received the “employee of the year/month” or something similar, make sure to include that in the resume. Additionally, if you have any acknowledgments, reference them in the resume.
46: Reread the Resume
Before you submit your resume, reread it twice. Making mistakes is human, but you have to edit them after writing the resume.
47: Put Resume Through a Checker
The internet is full of numerous checkers where you can run your resume for mistakes or to see if you lack some keywords. Before sending your CV, make sure you run this check.
48: Label the Resume Correctly
Don’t forget that your resume indirectly presents you. Your resume should be professionally named so that the hiring manager can instantly find you if needed.
49: Support Your CV with the Motivational Letter
Resumes serve as an introduction to your working career. If you want to explain yourself further, you can use the resume as a reference and briefly explain every point in the motivational until you create a complete picture of yourself. You can also write why you would be the right candidate for the job.
50: Ask a Colleague to Read It
Two heads think better than one. Before sending your resume, you can ask a colleague or a friend to read it and redirect you if needed.
Writing the Best Resume: Key Takeaway
To conclude this article, we will highlight some of the main points you need to keep in mind:
- Keep it short;
- Avoid personal pronouns – it’s self-explanatory;
- Research and use keywords in the job ad;
- Bold keywords for better scannability;
- Provide statistics whenever applicable;
- Use ATS-friendly fonts and sizes;
With the software and other filtration systems, you must think strategically when writing a resume to get the job of your dreams. Remember if you don’t know where to start, you can always use the job description as your template and include only what is relevant to the job post. Read and write down how you fit the position and why you should be considered.
We hope you found this article helpful and that you have a better perspective on how to write a winning resume.
1) How to choose the best resume-writing software?
Research the different types of resume-writing software before choosing one. Remember that you need a compelling and concise resume with proper fonts and layouts. If you don’t know where to start, you can always choose software with many templates.
2) Which is the best resume Ai writing tool for students?
Zety is currently trending with over 414,000 users.
3) Can I hire a professional for my resume writing?
Yes, you can. However, make sure that the person writing your resume is a specialist in the field.
4) How to find the resume score online?
To find the resume score for the company you’re applying to you must send your CV to a resume score site and wait for the report.