January 1, 2018
What does your resume look like? Did you know you can find resume designs on Pinterest boards? Or that some applicants will snail mail resumes to employers? With the digital and social media age, the resume game has changed. Pull out that dusty resume or start from scratch, then read on to brush up on the latest resume trends.
Whether you are applying to an internship, a summer job, or a full-time job, knowing what works and what doesn’t work will make your resume stand out—for all the right reasons.
Online Presence – Include a LinkedIn profile and relevant website or social media handles. Don’t have a LinkedIn? Go set up a phenomenal profile right now. Employees are looking: 87% of recruiters told Jobvite in their 2016 Recruiter Nation Report that they used LinkedIn to make decisions. In other words, a presentable LinkedIn profile could land you the job. Employers are also already using social media to research candidates, so if you don’t share your social media handles, play it safe. Take a look at social media security settings. Better yet, just don’t post that compromising party picture.
Actions – Use action verbs and use them in the right setting. A useful resume strategy to follow is Problem-Action-Result: in every role, things need to get done, you get them done, and something happens because of how you did them. If you are the treasurer at a college organization, money is your “problem,” so you handle it how? You “budget expenses.” But how often were you needed? Under what circumstances? Show how you excelled in the role. Employers don’t want to see you recite job descriptions or a list of verbs. Be on the look for LinkedIn’s yearly overused buzzwords. The words “specialized” and “leadership” are at the top for the 2016 list.
White Space – Get rid of lengthy paragraphs. You only have so much room, so much time! Six whole seconds, actually, before a hiring manager takes interest in a resume, or moves on to the next resume in the stack. Resumes are a lesson in brevity and persuasion. Use bullet points. Be organized. If a recruiter can’t see your skills or qualifications from a quick glance, it’s not going to be read at all. Add a dose of design. Get inspirations from a resume template that uses design elements without losing sight of the skills or experience section. Be that person who has a Pinterest board for resumes. Use a low-cost infographic as a resume.
All Jobs Ever Held – Only include jobs, internships, or organizations where you learned skills that could easily be used in a new position. Include relevant projects you completed in those experiences. When in doubt, opt out of a job if it’s going to raise questions from employers. Don’t leave employers wondering about a two-week job at a coffee shop or a high school club that has nothing to do with the position.
Times New Roman – According to a Time magazine article, Times New Roman is a font of the past. This doesn’t mean go font crazy but be a little bold. Checkout this list of acceptable fonts on Business News Daily. Don’t forget to choose an appropriate font size, so hiring managers aren’t squinting to read your resume.
References – They’ve actually been out of the resume for years. References are most often requested in a separate file or requested later during the interview process, and what you send should follow a format. Removing references, even the line “references available upon request,” creates space.
The digital age is changing resume expectations. You will no doubt feel, if you are not already feeling, that resumes are one huge balancing act. The question is how to make the page pop without being distasteful or how to say a lot without using too many words. You need a strategy. Find a career counselor at school or here at CollegeMouse. Be open to resume workshops and hiring fairs. Search online resume webinars and watch them live or find a recording.
Take your resume out of an inbox or a company’s database. When everyone’s resume is online, take your resume offline and stand out from the crowd. You have this great resume, now go out and show someone! When it comes to your resume, the most trendy, always in style thing to do is to take initiative.