Fashion changes and resume styles change too. If you have solid skills and work experience but your resume isn’t getting any bites, you might need a resume makeover. Try out our Resume Builder for help creating a resume that gets results.
And check out the “what’s in, what’s out” info below to help make your resume more cutting edge.
In: A professional summary at the top of your resume. This sells you like nothing else on your resume does.
Out: An objective statement at the top of your resume. Nothing says “outdated” like an objective. “Ditch it immediately,” advises Jack Williams, vice president of national sales and recruiting for Staffing Technologies, in Atlanta. Employers don’t care what a potential hire wants to do. “They care whether they can do what the employer needs them to do,” he says.
In: Resumes that are easy on the eyes. “I don’t have time to read through each resume and search for the important points. They need to jump out at me,” says Mike Earley, vice president of resource management at MyWire, a media aggregation site. Earley says hot resumes are organized with bullet points, not paragraphs, and have enough white space to look clean and visually interesting.
Out: Resumes that are “grey,” with large chunks of unbroken text that require recruiters to slow down. Chances are they won’t take the time.
In: A customized resume. Tailor every resume you send out for the job you’re seeking.
Out: A cookie-cutter resume: same resume for every job. These were from the days before home computers, when changing a resume was a really big deal.
In: A two-to-three-page resume when you really need the space.
Out: A one-page resume when you really need two or three pages. “One-page resumes are a myth,” says Williams. “No talented person with more than five years experience can fairly summarize their experience in one page.”
In: Selling yourself. The best way to do this, Earley says, is through quantifying your accomplishments. “When describing what you did on a job, be sure to include the results. Your accomplishments are key,” says Earley. For instance, if you’re an office manager, don’t just say you “organized a system to track outside vendors.” Conclude with a real result, like “reduced operating costs by one-third.”
Out: Not being your own best marketing and sales department. “Gone are the days of just listing job titles and responsibilities,” says Leslie Sokol, co-author of Think Confident, Be Confident.
In: Including links to websites for all companies on your resume, and, if possible, a brief description of each company. “Few do this, but it is always well received,” says Williams. “Hiring managers have an interest in knowing what a company does and what your previous position there had to do with that.”
Out: Assuming hirers know your old company or don’t need to know.
In: Including your LinkedIn or other social network address in your resume’s header. Make sure it’s a custom (“vanity”) URL if it’s LinkedIn (these are free).
Out: Not being up-to-date with social networking.
Following these ins and outs will make your resume shine and help you to land your dream job. Take a Free Career Interest Inventory Test to find a job you’ll really love.
And check out our resume resource center for more on the latest resume news and trends.