Your Resume Is a Direct Reflection of You: Make It a Good One
What you write on your resume says who you are as a person and a professional. In most cases, your resume is your first opportunity to impress a hiring manager. It’s their glimpse into who you are, and you only get one chance—if they don’t like what they see, you’re out.
Therefore, your resume isn’t something to rush through so you can apply for a job a little faster. It requires careful thought and planning to say exactly what you want to say. To improve your chances of making a good first impression, hire a professional resume writer—after all, they fully understand what hiring managers are looking for.
Regardless of how your resume is constructed, there are still some things you need to remember.
1. Your resume shows your interest in the job
The way your resume is put together speaks to how interested you truly are in the job. Naturally, the mere fact that you’re applying for it indicates some degree of interest, but your resume is where your passion can really shine through. If it is carefully planned and laid out, you’re telling the hiring manager that you’ve invested the time and effort to craft a high-quality resume. If you just throw one together in a few minutes, the chances of it going very far are slim to none.
Hiring managers can also tell whether you’re truly interested in the job based on your attention to the job posting and description. Before you even begin writing your resume, carefully read through the job description and write down any keywords, such as requirements, words that stand out in some way (e.g., bolded, italicized, underlined), and words that are frequently repeated. You should add these to your resume, assuming they truthfully describe you.
If you include keywords from the job description, hiring managers will notice that you carefully tailored your resume to their specifications. Even more importantly, your resume needs to incorporate keywords to make it past the applicant tracking systems (ATSs) most companies use to filter resumes based on perceived relevance.
2. Your resume shows your communication skills
Proper communication skills are something that all hiring managers look for because those are crucial in any job. You must know how to communicate with your boss, co-workers, and clients.
So, where does the hiring manager first get a glimpse into your communication skills? That’s right—your resume! Have you properly presented your qualifications and career path in your professional summary? Have you concisely stated your accomplishments in your work experience section in a way that reflects the qualifications you’ve listed? These are areas that hiring managers look at to determine your communication skills.
Demonstrating your communication skills doesn’t mean cracking open a thesaurus and using fancy words that you barely even know. A recruiter won’t be impressed by a pretentious vocabulary that only muddies your intended meaning. Stick to simple yet powerful words.
Communication skills also include knowing what not to say. If you list everything that comes to mind about your previous jobs, your resume will get way too long. Most resumes should be no longer than two pages. You’ll have to summarize a lot of things, but that’s an important aspect of communication. Every word in your resume should be there for a reason. Use as few words as possible without sacrificing meaning, and be sparing with the details—only include what’s clearly relevant.
3. Your resume shows your attention to detail
You can’t just write your resume and immediately submit it. If you want a good shot at getting hired, you need to go through it with a fine-toothed comb. Even if you’re a phenomenal writer, typos have a bad habit of remaining undetected until the document goes public.
Easily overlooked elements that can cost you the job include formatting, capitalization, punctuation, spelling, and grammar. Something as simple as a misspelled word could keep you from getting the job—that’s how tough the hiring process is. Don’t spend all that time constructing your resume only to neglect details such as proofreading. Hiring managers can tell how detail-oriented you are when they look at your resume, and leaving typos in it makes you look unprofessional and lazy.
Whether you realize it or not, your resume says a lot about you—it’s a direct reflection of who you are. You need to write and edit it carefully if you want to get the job. Better yet, you should consult a resume expert to help you say what you want to say on your resume.