Ever had a really bland meal at a restaurant and vowed never to go back? The same thing can happen to a bland resume and a potential employer if you’re not careful. The key to a resume is to grab their attention and keep it there. And this doesn’t mean scented paper or fancy graphics. Take note of these ways to spice up your resume and keep them coming back for more:
- Make sure to cater your resume to the job for which you’re applying.
Look at the job description and required qualifications, and make sure to highlight those first. If you don’t have some of the qualifications…
- Don’t lie and say you do!
Sell what you do have, and they might overlook what you don’t. Lying is sure to get you in trouble.
- Put the most relevant information first, and don’t include unnecessary info.
While your second place win in the skateboarding championships is quite an accomplishment, most employers won’t care. (Unless you’re applying for a job testing skateboards, of course.)
- Don’t use slang (it’s unprofessional!) or jargon.
The first person who reads your resume might not be familiar with the technical aspects of the job, so keep it simple and basic.
- Make sure it’s legible.
Don’t cram too much in or use too small a font. 12-point is standard, and leave some room between lines.
- Keep it up-to-date.
Don’t include jobs that are really old (your first paper route, for example) – just the jobs that will highlight the skills your potential employer is looking for.
- Keep it brief.
1-2 pages is sufficient to show them just how perfect you are for the job!
- Proof read!
Read it over multiple times, and have others check it, too. If you have a writing center on campus, have them help you. There are also websites, like Purdue’s Online Writing Lab if you get stuck and need pointers.