Tips to Make Writing Your Resume Easier
If you’re ready to put in your two weeks’ notice and are beginning the search for another job, it’s time to touch up your resume. It may be tricky or frustrating to cram all of your experience, skills, and education into one concise document, but we’ve compiled some tips to make the process of writing and polishing your resume a little bit easier. We hope this helps, and we encourage you to browse our open positions.
1. Have a template ready
This is by far the most important tip we can offer you. Your resume is dynamic–you’ll be gaining new experience, skills, education, and accolades with every job or degree you finish. Having your resume stored in a template that you can quickly edit or add onto will save you countless hours in the long run, especially as you keep adding to it.
Most processors have some nice resume templates built-in, including Microsoft Office and Apple’s Pages. There are also plenty of other resume templates around the Internet that are free to download. Choose one that’s clean and professional, but also expresses your uniqueness. Then, add in your information and store it in an easy-to-access folder on your computer. That way, when you’re ready to update your resume again, you can quickly add in a new skill you’ve learned, certification you’ve earned, or address you’ve moved to. Having your resume in an easy-to-access folder will also help if you’ve encountered a website that requires you to upload your resume.
2. Highlight your achievements
In most resumes, people usually write a brief description of their past positions. You can take this a step further by succinctly listing a few of your most important achievements. Did you close a terrific sale and improve revenue? Optimize a product to improve margins and production volume? Don’t be afraid to brag a little, as long as you’re telling the truth. When writing your resume, you need to always keep in mind the things that will make you stand out to your next employer.
3. Proofreading and editing are essential
When writing anything–from a text message to your resume–it’s been proven that it’s more difficult to proofread your own work. Business Insider found, “When you're reading your own stuff, your eyes might be dutifully scanning over your sentences, but all you're really conscious of is the meaning you're trying to get across, rather than these words you're using to convey it.”
If you’ve made a typographical error or missed a period, some hiring agents may find it unbecoming and discount you for not paying attention to detail. Before submitting your resume, ask a friend or family member to give it a quick read-over. If no one is available, we recommend using Grammarly.
If you’re willing, don’t hesitate to send it to a freelancer on Upwork or Fiverr. There are plenty of talented editors and writers who are happy to take a look at resumes and CVs for a nominal fee. The advice and feedback they offer might be more informed than what your peers may be able to offer you, so if it’s been a long time since you’ve revised your resume or are looking to really overhaul it, the investment might be worth it to be thorough about your resume.
4. Include only the most important information
Hiring managers are very busy, and they sure don’t want to spend several minutes combing through the fluff to find the experience and education they’re looking for–most times, your resume will be scanned for keywords pertinent to the position that is available. Just because you’ve held lots of jobs doesn’t mean you need to list them all on your resume. Most of us have held a part-time job in high school or college, but unless it highly influenced your career or character, it’s best not to include it.
When you’re applying for a job, try to tailor your resume so the experiences, education, and achievements most meaningful to the position appear first. And less is really more–even though it may be sentimental, don’t be afraid to cut out that barista job you had in high school, or the summer internship from ten years ago.
5. Actively update your resume
Even if you’re not planning on changing jobs anytime soon, it’s just a good practice to keep your resume up to date. The best way to do this is by saving the job description of the position you just accepted, so you can easily update your resume with your responsibilities from this position.
When it comes time to look for another position, it can be hard to remember specific highlights. Did you learn a new skill on the job, or did you contribute to your department’s win of a generous funding grant from the government? Be proactive and quickly jot it down. Even if you’re not changing jobs for a while, you may not remember it when the time comes, and that could be a great selling point to your next employer.
We hope these tips will help you spruce up your resume for your next employer. Be proactive about keeping an editable template of your resume, make sure you highlight your achievements, and keep it relevant. Don’t be afraid to have a pro–or even just a family member or friend–read it over for you. When you’re ready to find your next opportunity, visit Aerotek’s Career Opportunities.