Resume Rules 101: How to Pass the Six Second Test
Employers can get more than 75 resumes for every position they are hiring for. It’s no wonder then, that the average employer uses resume rules and looks at each resume for no more than six seconds before tossing it into the shredder. It’s an intimidating statistic to be sure, but with the right layout and content, you can keep pass this lightning-quick vetting process.
These are the 5 Resume Rules you must adhere to:
Grammar and Spelling
One of the most obvious resume rules, yet it’s staggering how often resumes are submitted without proofreading. One typo and your potential employer won’t make it past the objective line. Proofread yourself several times, then get a friend to proofread it. Alternatively, you can use free online tools like Grammarly to catch typos and grammatical errors.
Don’t Skip the Cover Letter
In your employer’s eyes, a well-drafted cover letter is a strong indicator that you’re someone who really wants the job. For many employers, skipping this step it an instant prompt to delete your resume.
Every resume you send should be tailored specifically to the role you’re applying for. Read the company’s website for details on what they do, and what their mission statement is. Then review the job description and determine the keywords used for what they want in an employee. Be sure to include those keywords in your resume, preferably near the top, in your objective line or summary statement.
Professional Layout and Font
A blank Word doc with a few bullet points is lazy and unprofessional looking. With a plethora of free templates available on programs like Word and Google Docs, there’s no excuse not to have a professional looking resume. Make sure your font is easy to read and avoid dense paragraphs; there should still be a lot of white space. Keep your resume to one or two pages. Be concise in order to include as much information as possible without cluttering the page.
While a pop of colour can help your resume stand out amongst the monochrome ones, use it sparingly and keep to darker colours, like navy blue.
List Accomplishments, not just Duties
An employer isn’t interested in what duties you performed in your role so much as how well you performed them. Therefore, don’t just list out your responsibilities and duties. Keeping to a concise, bullet-point format, describe your duties as accomplishments. Back up your accomplishments with facts and numbers. For example, instead of saying you were “responsible for order entry,” say, “entered orders efficiently and improved turnaround time by 60%”.
Your resume is your first impression on a prospective employer, so ensure that it represents you as the ideal candidate. With a strategic approach to your resume, you’ll be sure to make it past those critical first six seconds and onto their shortlist.
Not sure if your resume is enough? Contact Us for friendly advice! Make sure to also check out the list of available jobs Platinum Personnel has to offer to find your perfect employer fit.