5 Essential Resume Tips That Will Land You The Interview

By Mike Simpson

How To Make A Resume 101

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Here we go again.  Another job application, and another resume submission.

Have you ever just sat there, looked at your resume and thought, “I wouldn’t hire me after reading this.  This thing is putting me to sleep…”

Don’t worry!  We’ve all been there.

Here’s the thing.  It’s tough to make resumes exciting!  And in reality, they’re not meant to read like your old MySpace page, with bright colors, music and big, inviting photos.

They’re simply supposed to give the hiring manager a clear idea of the type of person you are – rather – the type of employee that you’ve been.  More importantly, it’s your chance to set the tables for what can be expected of you!

After all, this is the company’s first look into your work life – the journey you’ve been on to this point.

So give them what they want, but ensure to maintain a little bit of your own “flair”

Here’s 5 tips that you can use to make sure that your resume doesn’t get tossed in the “NO” pile with the rest of the pretenders.

5 Great Resume Tips

Tip #1: Keep Your Design Simple

As I mentioned earlier, you shouldn’t use your resume as an opportunity to showcase your creativity…save that for the job interview!  Avoid the urge to use any overly-sophisticated formatting or fonts, and PLEASE…no winkie faces, hearts, or any other symbols that have surely become part of your smart-phone vernacular.

In her article “How to Choose The Best Resume Font”, Jessica Holbrook Hernandez over at Careerealism says, “Serif and Sans Serif fonts are most recommended.”  I say follow her recommendation and keep it simple.

Tip #2: Include Important Keywords

The job interview process just isn’t what it was like for our parents.  More than ever, hiring managers are using advanced techniques to weed through stacks and stacks of applications and find the handful of candidates that they want to bring in for interviews.

How do they do this?

By using a digital database technology.  These screening systems can scan through resumes and search for certain keywords that the company has determined to be essential to the position they’re hiring for.

Okay so what does this mean to us simpletons?  It means that you better make darn sure that your resume has the keywords you need, or else your resume could find its way into the recycle bin faster than you can say “job interview.”

MIKE’S TIP: Take some time and really dig into the job description provided in the job posting.  They are a great source for relevant keywords.  Words that can be categorized as management or problem solving skills are usually a good place to start!

Tip #3: Use Power Words

Even though we live in a world where we view everything through an LED screen and it seems like literature was our Grandparents’ expertise, the power of words are still relevant in today’s world.  And in our case, this is especially relevant on our resumes.

It’s simply not good enough to state that you “worked at X Company” or that you “worked on Y project”.  Wherever possible, try to use “Power Words”.  This might include words like “implemented”, “initiated” or “executed.”

Power Words will help you show the employer that you are intelligent and capable, and when said with confidence help show a level of decisiveness and conviction.  All good things when you are trying to duke it out with a hundred other applicants!