I’m only in day two of my senior year, yet the pressure to finalize my post-graduate plans is already boiling. Now that new graduate and intern recruitment season for summer 2023 is in full swing, it’s hard not to feel overwhelmed. To combat the stress, remind yourself that setting aside at least 20 minutes a day towards tightening up your resume, applying to jobs, networking and preparing for interviews adds up to enormous progress over time.
We at the Daily Clog know how vital a good resume is in landing a job offer, no matter what year you are. To help ease the stress of the application process, here are five simple tips to bear in mind when creating your resume to increase the odds that it gets picked up by a recruiter rather than tossed in the trash.
List your desired job title at the top
By explicitly writing your desired position at the top underneath your name, you’re signaling to recruiters that you know what you want and you have a concrete vision and goals in mind. This suggests that you aren’t lukewarm about the role and you truly have an interest in it.
Use bullet points
You have a precious few seconds to grab a recruiter’s attention with your resume. Let’s face it, nobody wants to read a block of text that looks like it came out of a text-book. To make the information more digestible, split it up into digestible bullet points. A popular method you can use to structure each bullet point is called the “WHO” method: begin by describing what you did, how you did it and the outcome it had. Bonus points for including tangible metrics and numbers when detailing the outcome of your work to highlight the impact you had. Even if you’re writing in bullet points, still ensure that your resume is no longer than one page!
Begin bullet points with a bang
Carrying over from the last point, to make sure your experiences stand out more, begin each bullet point with impressive action verbs that haven’t been overdone or overused. You can even play around with bolding these words for further emphasis. Examples include “skyrocketed,” “overhauled,” “upsold,” etc. If you’re having trouble thinking of fitting verbs, check out this list with a bunch of great action verbs to use depending on the context.
Stay consistent with fonts, punctuation and spacing
Most of us are visual creatures. A resume that’s design looks clunky and inconsistent can throw a viewer off and bias them in a negative direction, even if the content is impressive. To make your resume look clean and professional, stay consistent with spacing, color and the fonts for body text, subtitles and headings. If you add periods at the end of bullet points, then every bullet point should end with a period (and vice versa). If you have only one word hanging off of a line, remove the ugly white space by shortening the sentence and deleting it entirely.
Separate skills by type
Recruiters like to see the kinds of skills you possess. Stay organized by separating your hard skills from your soft skills. Hard skills are easy to quantify and are usually technology related (i.e. proficiency in Excel, Adobe Photoshop, SQL, etc.). Soft skills are more like “people skills” such as time management, leadership and adaptability.
Thinking about the future and your career plans after college is hard enough as it is. Hopefully armed with these tips, you now have a better sense of how to craft the perfect resume that will catapult you into the career of your dreams.