Writing a resume can be a challenging task, especially if you are targeting a specific position. We look at hundreds upon hundreds of resumes a week, and there are certain characteristics that make a resume stand out! Of course, if a resume is well laid out, it is bound to grab some attention. However, what we notice most, above all, is the content. Here are some ways we recommend outlining your information on your resume to break away from the pack:

• The key is to allow the individual reading your resume to understand the scope of your responsibilities, and what you personally contributed to the role. Use verbs when describing certain tasks and incorporate results and accomplishments. Use quantities, numbers, and specific examples, if possible. Instead of saying “created a new marketing plan”, try something like “developed and executed a new marketing plan for the company, generating new business by…”

• As a general rule, the most recent two positions are of more importance to a hiring manager, and therefore should contain more information than the positions years and years ago (this is subject to change based on specific scenarios).

• It is your job to paint a picture of what you did day-to-day in your role. When we look at a resume, we want to be able to tell if the candidate would be a good fit for the position we are recruiting for. If the resume has a collection of generic phrases such as “team player” and “attention to detail”, it is tough to decipher what skills and abilities you have! A lot of resumes we see have irrelevant information, and contain a lot of “fluff”. When you are clear and concise, you ensure the information is relevant and shows what value you will bring to your next employer.

• If your resume is targeting a specific position, make sure to include that information correctly in the summary. For example, if you are applying for an administrative position, and the summary reads “passionate customer service professional…” it may not present as well as you hope.

• Include a professional email address. It is vital that your contact information demonstrates professionalism, and that you are serious about your career search.

• Proofread over and over, and ask for a second (or third) opinion. Errors in spelling or grammar are not worth it!

• Do not worry about “references available upon request”, or any references included in your resume. It is safe to assume references will be required later on in the process, and do not need to be included in your resume.

A resume can only portray so much, but you want your experience to be easy to interpret. The more a hiring manager feels they understand, the more likely they are to reach out.If you are looking for a new opportunity, be sure to apply to our open positions on Indeed! Happy job hunting!