Whether you’re one of the world’s best resume writers or you’ve never crafted a resume in your life, creating the perfect resume is not easy. There’s a lot to consider when writing a professional-level resume, and many of these considerations aren’t, well, considered. There are a lot of potential mistakes that can be made while undertaking resume writing, here are a few of the most common.
Failing to customize a resume for the job in question
This is definitely the most common rookie mistake when applying for a new job. Many applicants feel that it is A-OK to just submit the PDF file of their current resume without even glancing at it. It doesn’t matter if the job you’re applying to is similar to your previous work experience, you should always edit your resume to fit the job in question.
Customizing a resume is an essential step when applying to any job. In order to do this, simply read the job description and do a bit of research on the company. Then, take a look at your current resume and input some of the required qualifications that the job posting includes. The same goes for resume writers who are starting from scratch.
Failure to keep the reader in mind
You need to think about who will be reading your resume. Not only who will be reading it, but also what that person will find interesting, valuable, and relevant. The last thing you want is for the reader to become bored or lose interest while he or she skims the page. Try to capture the attention of your audience as soon as possible with a compelling objective statement. This statement is where you’ll set the tone for the rest of the resume and describe your career goals.
Failure to make the resume “skimmable”
Making a resume easy to skim is actually a very difficult task, but it is extremely important. One source describes just how important it is:
“Nothing makes you close a file faster than seeing a giant wall of text, so don’t ask a hiring manager or recruiter to read your autobiography squeezed onto one page… if you are catering your resume specifically to the job at hand, you shouldn’t have as much trouble keeping what you include down to one comfortable page.”
Failure to consider the design and layout
Not only do you need to focus on the words on the page, but also how those words are laid out. This basically just means that your resume should not just showcase your skills, but the design should be eye catching. There’s no need to go too crazy with this – it’s still important to keep it professional – but the page needs to stand out in some way or another. There are plenty of nicely designed resume templates to choose from, so utilize one of them. Or hire a professional resume writer who knows exactly how to make yours stand out from the rest of the applicants.