Your resume layout matters
According to a recent study, the average recruiter only spends 6 seconds looking at your resume, and I believe your resume layout can make a big difference.
If you haven’t gotten a recruiter’s attention in 6 seconds, you are pretty much toast. Not real encouraging, is it?
There are things you can do to affect this, and one of them is to make sure your resume layout is stellar.
How a resume layout revamp changed her outcome
A recent client of mine had me revamp her resume for a local job fair she attended. I changed her resume layout using the 5 steps I’m sharing with you today.
One Human Resource representative, upon seeing her new professional resume layout said, “Now this is a resume I can really use“. Translation:” Now I see where you fit in our company“.
He left the job fair with her resume in hand intending to send it to a few different managers within the organization because the resume layout emphasized just exactly where her skills could be used.
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5 Easy steps to revamp your resume layout
#1.Make your header stand out
Changing the name to a larger font helps it look professional and pop. You do want them to remember your name!
I used a Cambria Header font in size 24 in this example:
#2. Replace your objective with a title & tagline
An objective is usually a bit generic and boring. I’m sure many of them do not get read by recruiters because they don’t give any information that 1000 others haven’t put on their resume.
I like to use that space to catch the recruiter’s attention by using a job title and catchy tagline underneath it. It stands out, is different from the 1000 other resumes they have to review, and it looks clean and neat.
I used Cambria Heading font in size 14 and 11 respectively for the title and tagline for this example:
#3. Add a 2 or 3 sentence summary underneath
This section is going to be a short summary of you, similar to introducing yourself at a social function.
Include your years of experience and specialty within your field. Work in a few keywords relevant to the types of positions you are seeking describing what you do.
I used Cambria Heading font in size 10 for this example:
#4. Catch their attention with a “Highlights of Qualifications” section
This section combines with the others to really make your skills pop. It is easy to read, and gets your expertise front and center quickly.
You can use relevant keywords from your existing resume and place them right up top where they won’t be missed.
I used Cambria Heading font in size 11 and 10 respectively for the section title and skills for this example:
#5. Only include the last 10 – 15 years of Professional Employment
I’m often asked, “How long should a resume be?”. My opinion…! Unless you are a scientist with patents, trademarks, or a page full of awards in your field, your resume should be 1 to 2 pages at the most.
A succinct, focused functional resume format is what will help you get the interview initially. Once you’ve secured the interview, you can create a portfolio containing your long resume giving a complete work history.
In the next two sections, you’ll pull the most relevant bullet points from your work history into a “Summary of Relevant Skills” section, and delete the rest. Group the relevant information into 2 to 3 sections.
You’ll find this is infinitely more effective than using paragraphs or bullets under each job listed. It draws the attention of the reader, and efficiently organizes it. In the interview you can discuss where and when you used those skills and how they made a difference to the company.
Here is the finished product:
This complete resume is focused, draws the reader’s attention quickly to what they need to know, and is one effective step you can take towards securing an interview.
If you’d rather save time and have your resume done for you, check out my Deluxe Resume Package and get started on your job search quicker with a definite advantage over your competition.