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Is your resume camera-ready?

By May 2, 2017 March 29th, 2018 Company News

By Kirsten Faherty


Your resume is a snapshot of your career, so make sure it represents your accomplishments.

There are many good reasons to get your resume ready and up-to-date, even if you aren’t in the market to make a career move. Keeping your resume current and uploaded on a site like LinkedIn may assist you in making connections that can further your success in your existing role, or it may lead you to professional or educational associations that can help you keep your knowledge fresh.

If you think of your resume as a snapshot of your career, you owe it to yourself to invest as much effort into getting your resume camera-ready as you would when having a professional photo taken. Make sure your resume is ready for its close-up by creating a flawless representation of all you’ve accomplished so far:

Make a great first impression

Before interviewers meet you, they’re introduced to your resume. Depending on the position you’re pursuing, your resume may be one of dozens (even hundreds) reviewed, and if it’s not the best it can be, you may never make it to an interview. Make sure your resume is as crisp as the suit and as polished as the shoes you’ll wear to meet your potential new employer. Formatting that highlights your strengths, consistent punctuation, sensible spacing and even correctly spelled words suggest that you pay attention to details, which is something all employers appreciate.

Brian Wood, vice president of Human Resources at Cincinnati Insurance, advises, “Make sure that the reader can tell your basic qualifications within 10 seconds of looking at your resume. If it takes longer, the reader will likely move on to the next resume. If we have 200 submissions to sort through (which is very, very common in an organization our size), you only get a few seconds to make your resume stand out.”

Learn from examples

Sometimes, we discover what we like by first recognizing what we don’t like. Do an image search online for “professional resumes.” While not everyone agrees on what makes a resume professional, (meaning some of the examples returned in my search were truly awful!) seeing different styles can help you find a format that resonates with your own preferences. There are also plenty of templates – both free and for pay – available online that you can use to build your own.

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