Winning Resume Writing Tips

November 20, 2019



The last thing you want when applying for your dream job is to have your resume tossed out because it isn’t written properly. Hiring managers and recruiters alike say they've seen more poorly written resumes cross their desks recently than ever before. With a solid resume in hand you'll greatly increase your odds of earning a closer look and getting that interview. Here are some tips for making the most out of your resume.

"Do the Hiring Managers" Work for Them and format your resume wisely

Because of the volume of resumes a hiring manager receives, your resume won't get a thorough reading the first time. Most hiring managers scan a resume for approximately 25 to 30 seconds. Scanning is more difficult if it is hard to read, poorly organized or exceeds two pages.

  • Build from a template, using logical format, wide margins, clean type and clear headings

  • Selectively apply bold and italic typeface that help guide the reader's eye

  • Use bullets to call attention to important points

Identify Accomplishments not Just Job Descriptions

You never truly know what a hiring manager is looking for. In technical fields, for example, hiring managers seek candidates that can help them solve a problem or satisfy a need within their company. Consequently, you can't be a solution to their problems without stating how you solved similar problems in other companies and situations.

  • Focus on what you did in the job, NOT what your job was

  • Describe your position in one or two lines, then list your accomplishments

  • Always question yourself as you are writing asking, what was the benefit of having done what I did?

  • Accomplishments should be unique to you

  • Avoid using the generic descriptions

Quantify Your Accomplishments

The most common resume mistake is to make too many general claims and use too much industry jargon. Think of your resume as a marketing document designed to sell your strength and skills rather than just portray your bio.

  • Include and highlight specific achievements that show your comprehensive work experience.

  • Quantify your accomplishments by asking, If I had not done X, what could have happened? Describe your achievements by describing the return on the investment of your hiring: interest percentages, dollars, number of employees, etc.

Cater Your Resume for the Industry

Flashy isn’t always better. In design and marketing, the creative format of your resume matters; in technology fields, it does not. Always err on the side of being conservative stylistically. Often more important than how a resume looks is presenting your accomplishments in an error-free document with grammatically-correct writing, crisp type and on good paper.

Replace your Objective" with a "Career Summary"

A Career Summary is designed to give a brief overview of who you are and what you do. Since you often only have 25-30 seconds to grab a hiring managers attention, spend time developing a summary that accurately and powerfully describes you as the solution to their problems.