Before crafting your resume, you need to understand its basic purpose which is to land you the job interview. Not the job itself, simply the interview. A resume provides prospective employers an overview of your education, prior work experience, leadership/service activities, and technical skill-set among other items. Graduate Career Services works across college disciplines to provide opportunities (workshops, small group discussions, 1:1 appointments) to learn how to craft an individualized resume that best represents you as you begin your strategic job search process.
Keeping the end in mind – landing the job interview – helps to keep your writing in check, minimizing the need to over-explain or otherwise dilute your message. The resume is simply a fact-sheet that showcases your skills and expertise as related to a specific position or technical area.
- Resumes are clear, concise and organized. Focus on the employer’s needs, emphasizing skills and technical expertise that demonstrate your ability to add immediate value.
- Resumes are short. Stick to one page (2 at the most). If early positions are not relevant to the search at hand, leave them off.
- Resumes are skimmable. A hiring manager’s first look may last no longer than 60 seconds.
- Resumes are visual. Use capital letters, bold font and spacing to improve the reader’s absorption of key information.
- Resumes are dynamic and should be customized for each position applied for. If you can send the same resume to multiple organizations, it’s not a resume that will likely separate you from other candidates.
- Resumes contain strong action verbs. A candidate’s use of strong, clear, action verbs provides a quick inventory of skills/abilities that leave a lasting impression of competence.
- Resumes contain accomplishments and/or results that quantify candidate’s impact whenever possible.
- Resumes are error free. Proofread several times for spelling, grammar, and structure. Your advisor and a Graduate Career Consultant should review the document prior to posting on Go Irish or sending on to prospective employers.
- Resume Templates:
- Look at LinkedIN profiles in your field; find skills that match your education and experience and retool for use in your documentation.
- Gain new experiences; participate in professional organizations and community activities. Update resume to showcase service/leadership accordingly.
- Research applicant tracking software (ATS). Most organizations employ software to scan resumes for keywords and match to specific job posting; using websites such as JobScan.com, lifehacker.com, etc. will allow you to see how your resume matches up.
- Dump your resume into a word cloud generator to see what skills and experiences are highlighted.
- Remember, it’s easier to edit than create. Keep your resume dynamic and up-to-date; never stop revising and tweaking content.