How To Create a Resume

Loops Journal can provide you efficient, easy steps to creating your job resume. It may not be easy, but it will be incredibly effective.

It’s a hard truth, but you have to face it: You’re not going to meet with a Hiring Manager without a resume. You can dress in the nicest suit, have the greatest demeanor, and converse with the air of a Harvard Graduate. But when it comes to the hiring process, you are in the same league as everybody else: no resume, no interview, no job. Everyone starts on an equal playing field. Nowadays the standard route for a job search begins on the Internet. Gone are the days when the majority of jobseekers sought employment from their local newspaper. Employers know this, and more often than not post their job opportunities on a website that targets jobseekers. When you are presenting your resume on an online forum, you absolutely must separate yourself from the hordes competing for the same position.

So, we are going to teach you how to write an eye-catching, effective resume. Hiring Managers everyday are swamped with resumes. Each Manager may have his or her own approach to selecting possible candidates. It is your goal to ensure that your resume lands in the “A” stack. Not the “B” or “C” stacks. Unless something in your resume catches the Hiring Manager’s attention in the first 30 seconds, your resume may be tossed in the “Hmmmm” stack. Create a resume that stands out, and it might get a longer look, and a slot in the “A” stack. Creating a well-crafted resume is of paramount importance in getting the attention of an employer.

We have identified some tips that will improve your chances for attracting the attention you deserve. They are basic, vital rules to follow when writing your resume.

  1. Stick to the Facts

Never make claims you are not prepared to substantiate. Hiring Managers analyze resumes all day long, and can spot embellishments. If you are granted an interview, they will question anything and everything that seems out of the ordinary. Even if you get the job, if you fail at a task for which you claimed proficiency, you can be terminated. Consider very carefully the consequences of embellishment or misrepresentation.

  1. Clarity

Hiring Managers spend a considerable amount of time reviewing hundreds and thousands of resumes. They simply don’t have the time to devote to 2-3 page resumes that are lengthy in content. So, present the value you can bring to the organization by starting your resume with your “Specialization Statement” and “Summary of Qualifications”. This 3-8 sentence overview of your skills, experience, and qualifications may be the hook that encourages a Hiring Manager to review your entire resume. Stick to the Who, What, Where, How, When, and Why about you. Using a Thesaurus to replace common words is a great idea. You have less than 30 seconds to make an impression. Make it in 15.

  1. Keep It Simple. Make your point. Exercise brevity

Avoid long sentences. Produce a draft and revise until your qualifications and experience are identified with a few select but powerful words. Remember, the Hiring Manager will spend only a few seconds, a minute at most, reviewing your document. Make those seconds count.

  1. Be Objective

Write your resume to inform your audience, the Hiring Managers. Write it for the position. This means you may have more than one resume in your arsenal. Avoid overused words like “results-oriented” or “goal-driven”. The Hiring Manager is going to look for a resume that stands apart from the crowd. Each word should illustrate your value and identify your skill set. Don’t be afraid to publicize your skills and accomplishments.

  1. Avoid Lingo and Slang

Use language that is easy to understand. Avoid acronyms unless you define them. Use language as you would in a more formal conversation or interview. If you are applying for a position within your existing company, demonstrate your knowledge of the company with company-appropriate keywords. Do no use language that is too informal or familiar. You are addressing company superiors; they are not your buddies.

  1. Keep It Up to Date

The time to update your resume isn’t when your job is in peril, when you’re terminated, or when you find out about a salary freeze. Your resume should be updated every time you complete an important work project. It should be revised when you’ve received a promotion. It should reflect additional responsibilities as they are assigned. Your resume should be fresh and proud.

  1. Stay Focused

Your job is to know as much as possible about the company: their history, their management practices, their goals, the position for which you are applying, and how your contribution will help them meet their goals. Your resume should be tailored to the specific position you’re applying for. You want your resume to match the objectives of the position for which you desire employment.

  1. Direct your resume

Your resume must reach the Hiring Manager. Identify the person who ultimately will make the hiring decisions. Human Resources serves to manage the hiring process, but it is unlikely that they determine which candidate is hired. If you are unable to identify, by name, the Hiring Manager, address your correspondence to “Hiring Manager”. Consider sending your resume with an electronic/virtual return receipt requested.

  1. Make It Powerful

Use words that paint an image. Understand the power of words. Choose them carefully. Too many words and your resume is burdensome. Your objective is to “hook” the reader into reading the document until the very end and compelling him or her into offering you an interview.

Employers hire “Accomplishments” and “Achievements”. Accomplishments and Achievements create value. Your past performance is indicative of future contributions.

  1. Understand the importance of “Keywords”

Employers are utilizing technology known as ATS (Applicant Tracking Systems). This technology extracts information from your resume, identifying keywords as they apply to your skills and experience and the nature of the job at hand. This information is stored in a database.

The employer then will perform a database search for keywords specific to the job opening. This results in a listing of qualified candidates. You want to be among that list. Include keywords in your resume to increase your chances of being contacted by an employer.

A quick note on key words– use them as appropriate for your industry, DO NOT overuse or misuse them, and DO NOT use them if you are planning on handing the resume to someone. Networking does not require an ASCII search, so the key word may have your resume look out of sorts.

  1. Keep It Clean

Avoid excessive formatting, different size fonts, non-standard fonts, bold-type and italicized words. Your resume shouldn’t appear “busy”. Keep in mind that ASCII scanning may not properly identify non-standard fonts and excessive formatting. Thus your document isn’t given the consideration it deserves.

A few final tips for your resume:

Try to keep your resume to one (1) page. Unless you are a credentialed professional, one (1) page is sufficient.

Keep font size at 10 or 11. Bigger takes up more space. Anything smaller is hard to read and may not be picked up during an ASCII scan.

Provide all your contact information. Make it easy to reach you.

Remember, you are vying for a position for which hundreds, if not thousands, of resumes are being considered. Yours must stand apart. It must capture, in seconds, the attention of the reader. With diligence in preparation, focus on the content, and by following our tips, your resume can be the “stand-out” that lands you that coveted position!