So after 200+ career coaching sessions there are some gotchas I see on resumes consistently. Here's my top 5 tips on how to write a great resume.
1. One single purpose.
Too often I see resumes where it's unclear what job you want. People will state they do marketing, design, dev ops AND fly fishing.
When you hire a painter and he tells you he is also a chef, does that increase your trust in his skills or decrease it?
Pick the one thing you want this resume to focus on. Create multiple resumes if you want to focus on different roles.
2. Your resume is the answer to the job post
For every resume, the best way to get noticed is to look at the job posts you are interested in. What words do they use? What skills do they ask for? Your resume should be a line by line match.
You don't have to be a perfect match but by using the same language as job posts you can make it clear you understand the job requirements.
3. Talk about your wins, not your responsibilities.
This is probably the number one problem with 99% of resumes. Talk about your impact to the business.
Typically this is stated as metric + time.
Bad Example I designed layouts, screens and user interfaces.
Good Example I increased customer signups by 42% in 6 months by redesigning the sign up flow to be simpler.
People hire you for your potential impact to the business. Make it clear you can and have made positive impacts to business before. Use numbers and percentages with time to show your awesome wins.
4. Stop using corporate speak.
For some reason we all think we need to use impersonal, corporate buzzwordy lingo in our resumes. Sometimes I'll read a resume and have no idea what I just read.
Times are changing, use a professional but personable voice. It's not the 1980s anymore.
Bad Example Seeking to employ my skills in an organization that values designing thinking and incorporate user centered design in strategic partnerships.
Good Example I love designing beautiful consumer products that make people smile.
No tipos ever. Have a friend or multiple friends proofread. Read it backwards to catch errors. Print it out to catch errors. Double check all your links/email/phone numbers are correct. I have found resumes where the phone was listed incorrectly.
I hope these tips help, what other resume writing tips have you learned?