Three Tips for Editing Your Resume

The style of writing that I find the most difficult is resume writing.   You’re essentially trying to sell yourself when you write a resume, and it can be hard to boil down everything that makes you a strong candidate to only a page or two.  You end up having to be very efficient with your writing, cramming as much important detail as you can into as few words as possible.  It’s a time-consuming and often tedious process.

Through experience—and a lot of trial and error—I’ve picked up a few tips and tricks to help make resumes get through that initial wall of callbacks, allowing you to get to an interview and actually talk to a human being one-on-one.

Resume Tip 1: Check Your Formatting

Before even thinking about content, you have to check your formatting.  The average resume gets looked at for less than a minute, so you want yours to immediately catch the eye while still looking professional.  You want to make sure your headers are properly in bold and italic format, your skills and achievements are in clean, easy-to-read bullet points, and your font and margins are all clear and clean.  If your resume can’t easily be scanned over, it will probably be ignored, especially if you’re applying to a popular job.

Resume Tip 2: Be Specific In What You Accomplished

You also want to list more than just your job descriptions.  Just telling someone what your job title was isn’t very impressive—you want to highlight why you were good at all your previous positions.  Tell them about an accomplishment you managed, and how it benefited your previous employers.  Focus on the specific things you did and your specific accomplishments—don’t just parrot your job description.

Resume Tip 3: Use Action Verbs

Finally, from a technical writing perspective, use action verbs.  You want to tell potential employers  what you actually can do, rather than what your responsibilities were.  You want to pepper your resume with words like “addressed” or “modernized” or “contributed”, as opposed to phrases like “responsible for” or “led” or “managed”.  These are more impressive and are faster to catch someone’s eye.

Once you’ve finished your resume, why not submit it to Wordsmith Essays for an edit?  Our team of international editors will be more than happy to give it a coat of polish.  Stop by our order page today!


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