5 Resume tips from a former Hiring Manager [2021]

resume wiz resume tips

Resume Tip #1: It’s not about you

Sorry (not sorry) to be so blunt about it, but it’s true. Hiring managers look for employees that have the skills and experience that will add value to their team.

This is actually a huge relief, because it is so much easier to convince the hiring manager to call you for an interview when you’re not sleezy or salesy about your experience.

Understanding this concept allows you to focus on what the company needs and how you meet those needs, instead of focusing on using adjectives to embellish your work history.

Resume Tip #2: Do your research

This is very close to being as important as #1. Why? Because you need to know what’s important to the company.

Start with the job description or posting. Print it out and highlight keywords, skills, and qualifications that are required of the person in this role.

Use these key terms to review your work history, then match your skills and experience with what the company is looking for.

You want your resume to be sort of a checklist for the hiring manager:

Project management skills? Check.

Customer service experience? Check.

Master’s degree? Check.

Once you’re done with that, head over to the company’s website. Look up their mission, vision and values statements, strategic goals and any pertinent press releases. You’ll need this information to round out your resume and cover letter, and later on in your interview.

Resume Tip #3: Upgrade your format

I’m sure this doesn’t matter to EVERY hiring manager, but personally, if I look at another Word document with fifty bullet points in Times New Roman, I’m going to scream.

The goal is to make your resume STAND OUT. One way to do that is to make it look unlike every other resume the hiring manager is reading.

You can create your own template in Microsoft Word using the suggested format in this or you can invest in a downloadable, editable template from the web (Hint: you are on the right website).

Remember, your resume is one of the most important documents you’ll ever own. Skip a couple Starbucks runs and upgrade your template. (Hint: make sure it comes with a matching cover letter template as well!)

Resume Tip #4: Lose archaic terminology

It’s 2018. No one cares what your “objective” is – and let’s be real. Everyone applying for the job has the SAME objective – to get the job!

Instead, summarize your professional experience and skills at the top of your resume under the header “Summary” or “Professional Profile.”

It’s a great way to showcase your personality, passions and expertise, and gives the hiring manager an instant feel for WHO YOU ARE, not just what you do.

Another redundant phrase is: “references available upon request.”

References are a normal part of the hiring process. The hiring manager will request them at some point. Leave it off your resume, and instead, keep an additional document (in the same format) with your references’ contact information. This way, you’ll be prepared with a polished, professional document when the time comes.

Resume Tip #5: Say a lot without saying a lot

Say what!? The hiring manager does not have time to read through every accomplishment and skill you list in your resume. You need to be as concise as possible, while still sharing your most important achievements.

This format helps to break up heavy text and draws the reader’s eyes to the key points you want to highlight: education, skills, and experience.

Instead of listing every major accomplishment at each of your previous jobs, list your jobs (in reverse chronological order, mind you) and add a 1-2 sentence summary of the work you did. Remember, be concise, but powerful in the language you use. Then, add 2-3 bullet points of specific, quantifiable tasks you want to highlight – and make sure these align with the keywords from the job description.

Boom. You’ve condensed your two-page, bullet-laden resume into a few specific items that highlight the value you will bring to the company.

And here’s a bonus tip: PROOFREAD.

we can’t tell you how many resumes I’ve read that have typos and grammatical errors. PLEASE, for the love of all that’s fabulous in the world, proofread your resume!

Sometimes it’s hard to see your own mistakes, so have a few friends or family members read through your resume before you hit that submit button.

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