Recruitment experts share 7 insights into what they think when they look over a job candidate’s resume for the first time.
If your resume ticks all these 7 ‘at a glance’ boxes, then it’s very likely you’ll be one of the lucky candidates called in for a job interview.
Here the recruiter is generally trying to discern why you are interested in the position and what your status is (are you between jobs, still employed and so on). If you’re last few positions only lasted around 3 months red flags might be raised.
Though these considerations play a big role, the most important factor here is whether, or not you have the skills and experience to do the tasks integral to the position being filled.
If a recruiter can recognise the company name it gives them a frame of reference, or ‘credibility’. As the recruiter normally only has a short amount of time to dedicate to each resume this frame of reference helps keep them on-schedule. If a business name pops up that they haven’t heard of, the recruiter needs to expend more time digging deeper to discover what that company does and what your job there entailed.
As recruiters deal with many candidates and clients across various fields, they come to notice trends and patterns amongst job candidates from particular businesses which gives them valuable insight which can sometimes prove helpful.
Do your skills and experience match what the position is asking for? Does your resume show clear career progression coupled with growing levels of responsibility? Are your job titles reflective of the responsibilities you had at the time? Do they make sense, or are they trumped-up?
Ah gaps, these are where many a promising candidate can run afoul of the recruiter. Gaps are okay as long as you have provided an acceptable explanation. Don’t just skip over a year or 2 in your life and expect the recruiter not to bat an eye. Sufficiently explain why the gap is there and that should do the trick.
If you have a LinkedIn account, Twitter, run an industry blog, or anything else career related then you may want to include it in your resume. If you’ve included a LinkedIn link, or other links in your resume, chances are the recruiter will get online and check you out.
Keeping a professional online presence shows your career focused and can handle technology, plus it can help build your credibility. It can also keep things interesting and surprising for the recruiter, especially if they end-up on a job candidate’s website, or Twitter.
How is the spelling, grammar and sentence structure? Is the resume well formatted, organised and easy to follow? Are the ideas clearly conveyed? Does it peek the recruiter’s interest?
Write your resume in first person.
Mix up third person with first person, or past tense with present tense.
Write an Iliad-length resume. Keep your pages to an adequate amount reflective of your experience.
Fluff-up your previous job titles and responsibilities. Just be honest, underhanded tactics usually come back to bite.