Sometimes the simplest things can leave the biggest impression when a recruiter or hiring manager gives your resume a 30 second review. I have summarized 5 General Resume Tips below that you should implement right away if you want to ensure you make it past the 30 second test:
- The standard font size for a resume should be 10 or 12 point font. You can go as high as 14 point font for headers or titles, but try to avoid italics, all caps, or unique fonts that can be distracting to the reader. Make sure you have uniform 1 inch margins throughout the document as well.
- Keep your resume to 1-2 pages depending on your experience level. Our recommendation is for individuals with less than 5 years of experience to keep the resume to one page, while folks with more experience can afford to have 2 pages. Anything longer than 2 pages may remove you from consideration.
- Make sure you have an email address that includes your name, initials, or something professional on your resume. You should avoid providing an email address that is inappropriate or contains poor humor. You certainly don’t want your email address to leave a bad impression. This common mistake is easily avoidable.
- Avoid using abbreviations in your resume. Many times the first line of review for your application will be an HR representative or someone not as well versed in the role you are targeting. If your resume is riddled with obscure abbreviations, it reduces the impact of the message you are sending.
- It is unnecessary to have graphics, photos, or personal information such as your gender, ethnic background, date of birth, or marital status on your resume. It is illegal for an employer to ask for most of these things and the graphics can be extremely distracting. Many employers utilize Applicant Tracking Software (ATS) to scan resumes upon the initial review of applicants, so the graphics are typically unreadable regardless.
These tips should start you on the right path to developing a more marketable resume. Combined with the weekly tips we offer through The Confident Career Blog, you will greatly improve your chances of generating more interviews in 2014!