25 things to Consider While Writing an Effective Resume

One of the main questions recruiters and headhunters hear from clients is, “I have sent you my resume. Can you have a look at it?”

Most recruiters can help with resume formatting but can’t really help if the information given is confusing, not to the point, or not providing accurate information. Often, clients perceive that recruiters can help them out in building a good resume. Have you ever thought why do people put so much of effort in building their resume? A resume is your first interaction with the company. By the time you have shared your resume to the company, the first perception about you is already created by having a look at your resume, though you must understand that your resume can only help you in getting shortlisted for the interview, the rest is up to you. According to Forbes.com, 40% of selection is based on your personality and presentation. There is no any set pattern of a wrong format or a right format. Every Industry has a different need and resume is to be modified based on that only.

However, building a good and effective resume is important in order to get noticed. I have picked up few of the common pointers which should be considered in general and across industries.

1. Font Size:

Do take care of your font size while writing your resume. Irregular font sizes used in the resume doesn’t give a positive impression. It is best to use Times New Roman or Calibri with a font size between 10–12 and black color.

2. Consistency:

Please do take care of the consistency in terms of using bold, italic and underline. Too much usage of the same makes your resume very loud and interviewer might get disinterested in going through it.

3. Spelling Checks:

Ensure you are not making spelling mistakes. Three to four errors in your resume may lead to rejection of your CV.

4. Reverse Chronological Order:

You should prepare your resume on reverse chronological order. List your most recent experience at the top and go like that.

5. Project Details:

While mentioning your experience, must write about your projects in brief with the skill sets you have worked on, along with your roles and responsibilities. You must mention at least 2–3 projects against your skill sets with every company you have worked on.

6. Objective:

You can skip objective from your resume as the employer would hardly bother about what your objective is.

7. Company details:

Always write the full name of the companies. People make a mistake by writing the short form of the companies. Write Hewlett Packard Company instead of just mentioning HP. You can put HP in the bracket just after the full form. Properly highlight the duration, your designation or position held against each company.

8. Bullet Points:

While explaining your roles and responsibilities, keep it straight short and crisp. 6–7 bullet points would be enough.

9. Monotony:

Don’t start every bullet point with “responsible for” or “understanding of” as it might look boring to the hiring manager. Start with high-impact action verbs such as Constructed, Improved, Enhanced etc.

10. Personal information:

Contact details including your phone number, professional looking email id and location would work. No need to put your full address neither you should share your personal information like married and having kids etc. The employer might not consider your resume for a travel-oriented job.

11. Photo:

Don’t put your photo on the resume.

12. Let Numbers Talk:

Exact figures like numbers, statistics, and percentage like reduced companies cost by 28%, increased team performance by 14% catches more attention.

13. Make it Attractive:

Maximum of the resumes get screened in initial 10 sec. So, you must ensure you are making the first half more attractive.

14. Keep it Simple:

The language used in the resume should be simple, easy and understandable and you must be able to justify every skill and experience you have mentioned in it. Do not fake information.

15. Confidential Information:

Many people make a mistake that they reveal their client’s information in the CV. It’s good that you want to highlight the work done with that client, but keep in mind, not to reveal confidential information about your client.

16. Hyperlink:

If you want, you can attach your LinkedIn and twitter profile hyperlink in your resume.

17. Education after your Experience:

If you are putting your education above your experience, it’s not a good practice. Your education should come next to your experience and not before that.

18. Gaps:

Do address the gaps in your education or qualification if any with an explanation to it.

19. Non-Traditional Work Experience:

You must mention your non-traditional work experience in your resume like freelancing, Blogging, part-time work etc.

20. Job Hopping:

If you have been hopping jobs frequently, do mention the reason against each job hop. Try using years only and omitting months to reduce the visibility of gaps.

21. Awards & Accolades:

Must include the awards and accolades you have received in your organization.

22. Keep it Short:

As per studies, hiring managers on an average spend only 6 seconds in short listing the resume. So, try to be concise unless and until you have projects to showcase in your resume.

23. Save your file : PDF to as to avoid formatting gaps, errors, and alteration.

24. Name your profile : with your name and not just resume.

25. Proofread : your resume time and again.

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