It's a new year which means it is a great time to spruce up your resume. Luckily we have some great tips from Lisa Rangel, an Executive Resume Writer and Official LinkedIn Moderator at ChameleonResumes.com, a Forbes Top 100 Career Website and recently named one of the top 28 resume writers in 2016 by Career Toolkit. Her tips will clarify what to do for the different parts of your resume and how important it is to emphasize these key points. And most importantly, the resumes of today are so different than the resumes of the 3-5 years ago. Knowing the correct way to write a current resume will have you securing those interviews for the right position for you.
Here are the key elements to consider for writing your resume:
1. VISUAL LAYOUT & DESIGN
First and foremost your resume needs to be easy to read. According to a recent study, on average a resume gets only 9 seconds of initial attention. So make those 9 seconds count.
· Format using white space and a balance of prose & bullets leading the eye through the document.
· Make sure your achievements are bulleted.
· Avoid big blocks of text and long bulleted lists.
· Use short one to two line sentences.
2. CONTACT INFORMATION
· Make your name bigger than the main font, but not the biggest font.
· Put your name at the top, whether you center, right or left align it.
· Place your contact information in the document body and not the header or footer.
· Make sure your email address is a live link.
· If you went to a reputable or well-networked school, use your .edu email address.
· Use one phone number. Ideally use a mobile phone number so you can accept texts.
· Use live social media icons or actual URL links to relevant social media pages.
3. SUMMARY SECTION
· Include a Job Target Heading in the largest page font.
· Use value statements indicating how your successes add value to the prospective role.
4. CORE COMPETENCIES
· Employ keywords from target job descriptions that reflect relevant accomplishments.
· Use topical nouns instead of verbs to highlight your skills and increase recognition by applicant tracking system (ATS) software.
5. WORK EXPERIENCE
· When writing your employment history, ask yourself the following: How do you know you did a good job?” What did that good job look like?” “Why did it matter that you took this action?”
· Describe your achievements using verb-based language in a way that shows you’ve made money, saved money, streamlined a process or positively contributed to the culture of the organization.
· Strike the right balance between history and forward-focused relevancy. It’s important to position yourself as being able to adapt to new challenges.
· Focus on the last 10-15 years of employment history. If you go back longer than 15-20 years you might be unnecessarily dating yourself.
6. GRAPHICS, TEXT BOXES & TABLES
· Ensure the information in text boxes, graphs or tables are written into the content of the resume, in case they do not show up.
· Use Microsoft Borders and Shading function for borders and color variations.
· Include Education, Certification & Training Sections when relevant.
· Choose to include dates for degrees over 15-20 years old, but be consistent in including or excluding information.
· GPAs matter in financial industries.
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