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What Do You Like to See in Your Resume?

AUTHOR: Darlene Zambruski
POSTED: November 1, 2011 at 1:26 pm

You’ve decided to take the plunge and get your resume written or revised by a professional company. Naturally, the cost of such a service is your most important consideration, along with the company’s reputation and client success.

Once you get past those initial concerns, your next thought may be:

1. The format you like best. Reverse chronological, functional, a combination of the two.

2. Presentation or template choice. Resume writing companies often have several from which to choose in a variety of fonts.

3. Page length. One, two or more?

Is Your Opinion What Really Counts?

While you’re pondering these choices or considering what the resume writer suggests, it’s important to remember one thing: What you like or don’t like is not as important as what the hiring manager expects to see.

That’s right, your opinion as to style, page length and template choice isn’t important. After all, you’re not the target audience for the resume. The hiring manager or recruiter is. Therefore, it’s best to keep their preferences in mind. And to trust your resume writer.

Think of what the Hiring Manager Wants.

Professional resume writers know from experience what will fly with a hiring manager or a recruiter. They know not to list every single thing you’ve done in your professional or academic career even if the data is dear to your heart. They know personal information isn’t wise to include either. Yes, you’re very proud that you once won a music award. However, if you’re no longer in the performing arts, the hiring manager couldn’t care less about that part of your background.

Other pitfalls to avoid include:

1. Going back too far in your work history. That invites age discrimination.

2. Keeping your resume task oriented (daily duties) rather than showcasing accomplishments (results of what you’ve done).

3. Failing to quantify achievements.

4. Writing a ‘general, one-size-fits-all’ resume that is so generic none of your skills stand out.

Even if you’re tempted to tell the resume writer what you prefer, it’s best to listen to the advice she or he has to offer. If you’re told a two page resume is best, given the resume writer’s past experience, then believe what’s said. Your resume writer wants  you to succeed and to get an interview.

Trust the experts. Listen to what they propose. Benefit from their years of expertise. And put the hiring manager or recruiter’s preferences first rather than your own.