I review thousands of resumes every year that represent thousands of candidates who would love to work for Daxko. I’ve seen some truly great resumes, and I’ve also seen some that are not so great. A great resume is a must-have regardless of the career you want, and these are my top five tips for creating a resume that will get noticed at Daxko (and likely anywhere else you apply).
#1: Design matters.
The role you apply for will dictate just how creative you should be with your design, but any resume should have a design that makes it easy to read and find the pertinent information. Keep in mind that the average recruiter or hiring manager spends about six seconds reviewing a resume before making a decision to look further or move on (but lucky for you, we’re not average here at Daxko).
You don’t have to be a graphic designer to have a nicely formatted resume, either. You can find templates on Microsoft Word and Google Docs; or, if you want a fancier format, you can find some on Freepik or Creative Market. And if you are a graphic designer or applying for a creative position, please don’t come at me with an ugly Indeed resume with no formatting!
#2: Like a good suit, the best resumes are tailored.
Your resume should be tailored to the job you are applying for, not for any job at any company. I’ve heard many people compare interviewing to dating, and that comparison really works well here. When you’re dating, you want to feel like your date really wants to be with YOU, not just any warm body. Employers have feelings, too… and we want to know you want THIS job at THIS company.
#3: Objectives are so 1996.
If you’re applying for a job, we’ll assume that your objective is to get said job. Instead, use that valuable resume space to provide a summary of your experience or to highlight some of your career successes. If you’re a new grad or someone just entering the workforce, focus on classes you’ve taken that are applicable or successes while in school (did you maintain a 4.0 while working to support yourself through school?)Other things to leave off your resume include:
- References – We’ll ask for those separately if you make it to that point in the interview process. Save that space on your resume for more useful information.
- College details from more than a decade ago – Most employers don’t care what sorority you were a part of in 1998. Internships also take up valuable real estate on your resume and can be removed for anyone more than 5 years out of school (unless your internship was especially noteworthy/career defining).
#4: Everyone loves a mystery… except on your resume.
Don’t make me guess or jump through hoops to get the information I need. What do I mean by this? Well for starters, make sure you put your contact information at the top of your resume. Don’t hide it at the bottom, or even worse, forget to include it altogether. And your LinkedIn profile is great, but I want an email and a phone number to reach you (call me old school).
I also don’t want to guess about your work history – include dates and locations. I’ve yet to meet a recruiter who actually enjoys reading functional resumes; so skip that, include your work history, and write a cover letter if necessary.
#5: Check yo’ self (before you wreck yo’ self).
Really though, proofread your resume… and then have someone else proofread it for you. You don’t want silly grammatical or spelling issues to stand between you and your dream job! It’s almost laughable how many resumes I see with “detailed oriented”… you’ve just got to love the irony there! I can look past a typo, but if you can’t string a few words together without me shaking my head, we have a problem.
There are probably several more I can think of, but these stand as my top 5. If you have questions, or want to tell me how wrong I am about functional resumes… good news! We’re hosting another #AskDaxko Twitter chat on Wednesday, July 19th, at 11:30 AM. We’ll chat for an hour about resume do’s and don’ts, our favorite formats and fonts, and all that jazz. Got a question, but can’t join live? Feel free to send it in ahead of time using the #AskDaxko hashtag, and we’ll address it during our chat. Hope to “meet” you in the Twittersphere!
Beth Wolfe is Daxko's Senior Talent Acquisition Specialist who is from the beach, but thinks Birmingham is waayyy cooler; and who enjoys any Seinfeld reference worked into everyday conversations.