Clean Up Your Resume To Get Your Dream Job

February 03, 2020
Jess

There are lots of different elements that go into getting your dream job, and it would be wrong to say that your resume is the key to the whole process. No matter what your resume says you can or can’t do, your potential future employer will place far more weight on how you come across during the interview process, and how you perform in any job-specific assessment tasks you’re asked to take part in before being offered the role. That’s not to say your resume isn’t important, though, because it is. Your resume is a foot in the door, and without a great one, you may find that the door isn’t open to you at all.

If you’ve been passed over for ideal-looking jobs repeatedly despite having what appears to be a world-class resume, you’ve probably put it down to chance. After all, putting your resume into a company is no more a guarantee of success than putting money into casino website such as Amigoslots.com. Hundreds of players will have put a similar stake on the same online slots game at the exact same time as you, and they can’t all win the jackpot. The winner of that online slots game is, therefore, the luckiest player rather than the most skilled, and it can feel that it’s sometimes the same way with employment. Many of us know what it feels like to see someone obviously less-qualified be promoted over our heads or get the job that we wanted, so surely it must be more down to luck than judgment?

That isn’t necessarily true. While you might think that your resume is a first-class document that extols all of your best qualities as a worker, it may actually be what’s holding you back. If you’re competent and qualified but never seen to get a callback or an interview opportunity, it’s possible that a bloated or poorly worded resume may be to blame. We’re about to go through some common mistakes, and if you spot any that apply to you, correct the mistake before you sent another resume to another company!

Change Your Unprofessional Email Address

The internet has been around for a very long time now, and if you’re in your 30s, you probably started your online life as a teenager. That probably means that you had a very teenage-sounding email address to go with it, and you might still be using it for personal correspondence. That’s fine for things that are truly personal, but not when you’re trying to impress a possible employer. The last thing you want a white-collar company to know about you during the application process is that you love My Chemical Romance, or you’re ‘fluffy,’ ‘sexy,’ or just about anything else you’d never say to an employer in person. If your email address is a little dated, set up a new one elsewhere and use that to handle all your work-related communications.

Cut Your School Qualifications

You can ignore this piece of advice if this is your first job. If it isn’t, and you’ve been out of the education system for more than five years, drop all your school qualifications. Your university or college degree is still relevant, but nobody – probably not even you – cares what you did at school. That top grade you got in drama class was great at the time, but it’s almost certainly irrelevant to whatever it is you’re trying to do now. Your employer wants to know what you’ve done in business, not how smart you were as a teenager. Not only do these qualifications take up space, but listing them makes you seem less mature than you intend to be.

Headlines, Not Stories

The general expectation for a resume is that two pages are acceptable, but three pages are too much unless you’re applying for a highly specified job that requires a lot of detail from you. Bear in mind that if you’re applying for a highly desirable job, the person or people reading the resumes are going to receive a lot of them. If yours is too long, it might be put aside without being read on the grounds that you were unable to keep it concise, and therefore you’re probably an untidy worker. Talk in bullet points, not paragraphs. For previous roles, the name of your job plus three bullet points covering the crucial aspects of your duties is sufficient. You’ll have the chance to expand upon these points when you arrive for your interview.

Drop The Mission Statement

We don’t know who decided that resumes should come with a mission or objective statement, but they were wrong, and the practice needs to stop. It’s inherently obvious what the purpose of your resume is – it’s there to help you get a job. If you want to explain why you’re looking for a job, or the type of job you’re looking for, that information should go in your cover letter. A resume is a place for facts and figures, not aspirations. This is yet another resume item that takes up space and makes your document longer than it ought to be.

Tailor Every Resume

The most common mistake people make with sending resumes is that they send the same one to everybody. This is poor practice, and it means that your resume is too broad and general. Not every job has the same requirements when it comes to experience, qualifications, or character. The smarter applicants you’re up against will have spent time on the website of the company you’re applying to and looked at the type of language they use, and then amended their resume to reflect that style of language. They’ll also look at the key skills required from successful applicants, and altered the focus of their resume to underline the point that they have all these keys skills. This means that every resume you send has to be unique, and it will take you more time to apply for a job, but if you’re not prepared to do that, then you’re probably not right for the job!

In a nutshell, or advice is ditch anything that’s too old to be relevant, keep a professional tone, deal only in facts, and remember that less is more. If your resume is easy to read, it’s also easy for the person reading it to reach out and get in touch with you quickly. Just make sure you haven’t supplied an embarrassing email address for them to do it with!