It’s a new year, and if you are currently job searching chances are there is room for improvement in your resume. The idea of redoing your resume can be overwhelming, and if you are pressed for time a task such as this can easily fall by the wayside. But there are some quick and easy ways that you can revamp your resume which will likely result in better responses in your job search efforts. To give your job search a boost in the new year, here are some creative ways to improve your resume that don’t require too much time or effort:
1) Improve Readability with Bullet Points
Hiring managers take an average of six seconds to look at your resume and decide if it’s worth it to keep reading. Bullet points are a great way to cut out extra words, highlight important information and make your resume appear cleaner and easier to read.
2) Cut out the Objective
Hiring managers already know you are looking for a job, and these days objectives are unnecessary in resumes. Instead, one of the easy and creative ways to improve your resume is to create a personal branding statement that you alter based on each job you apply to. Your personal branding statement should show what you are passionate about, and the specific value you will bring to the employer. For more details, read our article Creating a Strong Resume Personal Branding Statement.
3) Avoid having a work history that reads like job descriptions
When you state your past job titles, employers already have a general idea of what duties you performed. Listing duties and responsibilities in your resume will only bore the reader. One of the easy and creative ways to improve your resume is to focus more on accomplishments instead of responsibilities. Be specific about ways you went above and beyond in past jobs, and the results that came as a result. A good example of a statement giving details about accomplishments is something like “Purposefully promoted networking events that increased the company’s client base by 30%”.
4) Cut out some details and leave more to the imagination
Preferably, it’s important to keep your resume no longer than one page (two pages at the very most if you have years and years of experience). To pique the interest of hiring managers, it also helps to leave them wanting to know more about you (which they will find out when they arrange an interview). One of the quick and easy ways to improve your resume is to cut out information such as jobs that are more than 10 years old or irrelevant to the job you are applying for, reasons you left past jobs, and your hobbies. Highlight your most important skills and accomplishments using vibrant nouns and action verbs and let the hiring manager decide what else they want to know.
5) Remove jargon the reader won’t be able to understand
It’s important to tailor your resume for each job to include industry-specific terminology that the hiring manager and applicant tracking system are looking for. But one of the creative ways to improve your resume is to take a close look and ask yourself if you have used any terminology that may not be understood in the industry you are applying to. If the hiring manager gets tripped up on any of the words or acronyms they see on your resume at first glance, there’s a good chance they will stop reading and throw it aside.
Author: Jessica Cody
Jessica Cody, a native of Fairfield County, Connecticut, has a background in online marketing and public relations. Currently, she works at VHMNetwork LLC in the role of Marketing Analyst. She is a graduate of the University of Connecticut, where she studied Journalism and Political Science. She is also an avid runner with a passion for the outdoors.