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You have 6 seconds to make an impression with your resume, here’s how to do it

Considering that a potential employer spends only about six seconds looking at your resume, it is of vital importance that your resume leaves an impression. If you missed the resume builder class in college, don’t panic! We’ve got you covered…

typing tech resume device

Making the professional cut: Resume building

Hopefully, while you were in school you got some one-on-ones with industry professionals about how to do a bang-up job writing your resume. Considering that a potential employer (based on a recent study from TheLadders) spends only about six seconds looking at your resume, it is of vital importance that your resume leaves an impression.

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If you missed the resume builder class in college, don’t panic! We’ve got you covered…

Include a cover letter

We get that it’s a pain to make a cover letter job-specific each time you shoot out a resume online, but if you create a letter that is fairly versatile in your industry, you may be able to get away with changing just the title, date and the recipient name (if you’re absolutely desperate).

However, even if you have a template that works pretty well in most circumstances, we recommend taking the time to include information that is targeted to the job you’re applying for specifically. It’s important. Trust us.

Keep it concise

Employers don’t want to read three pages of text. Keep it short and simple.

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Include only clear, concise descriptions that implement “success verbs”.

These are words like expanded, grew or reduced. Don’t spend time on lengthy descriptions. Instead, stick to the (brief) facts.

Your professional resume shouldn’t be more than one page. Trust us — they won’t read it, plus, they’ll wonder why you added all that superfluous information, and you’ll get thrown to the bottom of the pile.

Don’t overdo it

This goes hand-in-hand with keeping it concise. If you have more than a few jobs in your job history arsenal, include only the most long-lasting and relevant. Your list should be pretty short, especially since you’re just now entering the adult world of big boy and girl jobs. Also, if you have a minimal work history feel free to include relative volunteer work.

Highlight

Your potential employer is really only curious about a few things… your job history, name, current position held and education.

Highlighting those areas will make your resume more user friendly.

Stand out without overdoing it

If you’re a graphic designer it may be okay to use an infographic or some type of image to show your abilities, but otherwise please avoid it. Instead of including pictures, images or graphics on your resume, include links to various works and highlight them to stress their importance!

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Employ a professional in the industry

Do you have a friend who is already working in the industry? Ask for their help! Seek out expert advice to make your resume more impactful. Plus, anyone who is already in the industry may be able to give you vital insight on networking opportunities. It doesn’t hurt to ask, right?

#6SecondResume

Written By

Staff writer, Ashley Lombardo, earned her B.S. in journalism from The University of Florida and has used her skills to report on everything from the economy to productivity. She is well-known for her tremendously positive presence, and when she's not trying to save the world she indulges in red wine, friends, fitness, books, bubble baths, shoes, family and love.

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  1. Pingback: Don't settle for mediocrity, make a killer first impression - The American Genius

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