When was the last time you got your profile reviewed?How many calls are you getting with your profile out there? How impressive and effective is your resume? Fret not, if your answers to the above questions is a “not enough”or blank .  Don’t be discouraged. May be it’s time for you to review your resume. A lack of profile reach or search-ability can impact your chances to get noticed by recruiters.

But hey, let that not stop you from creating an effective resume without further delay.

Here are 5 resume writing tips for an effective CV:

1. Resume Pages : Experience Vs Number of pages

Per my observation, for resumes to be effective, they should not be longer than 2.5 pages.

In my profession as an HR consultant, I keep coming across resumes which are 5 to 8 pages longs, in some cases even longer.  So what’s wrong you ask ?  You say “ I have “x” number of experience and hence my resume is huge”. Well, step one in that argument, is it doesn’t work in a face paced environment.

Here’s the why…

Remember, resume is your first step to get the attention of the recruiter hiring for the role. In competetive job market like ours, there is gap in supply Vs demand. This means, limited qualified jobs – plenty of job applicants. So, the task of the recruiter becomes even more crucial to sieve through these profiles and choose the best fit.

Remember, in business time is also of essence. Hence, longer CVs are usually difficult to be read completely and many a times kept aside in comparison to those compact, effective resume.

So, bear in mind to build your resume which is not more than 3 pages long max (ideal 2.5 pgs). I can tell you that the top executives with more than 20+ years of experience have their resume page not more than 1.5. That’s it….

So if you have 4 to 10 years of experience and have a profile with 5 + pages, it really doesn’t help your cause. Recommendation here is to structure and word your resume well, so it is visually appealing, readability is effective and talks of the authentic you as a professional.

2. Resume should include:

Summary / Expertise: There are many people who write objective to begin their resume; however, I recommend that instead of a visionary objective, we get to the heart of the matter. Let’s talk about you, summing your professional experience in years, your key skills or domain you work in to begin your resume.

These keyskills and domain become your keywords and hence will further make your profile more searchable. Idea is to be visible in the crowd…

Education: Mention the details in the organized form. I recommend to make use of table format. You may explore other best methods too.

Work Experience details: Mention your work history in different organizations till date. Please use descending order for this purpose. Mention the most recent or current organization as first.

Again here, I would recommend to make use of table format for an organized looking resume. Feel free to explore other tech tools to make build your resume compact.

Certifications – Technical & Non-Technical, Professional:  It is always a good practice to mention the various certifications related to work while building your resume.

Role details for specific projects for technical professionals (tools & platforms used): Many a times I have observed that since the person has been working on the same role, either with same or different ones , the tasks get repeated in every project and at times only project or client name changes. This only takes up too much of space in your resume. One way to organise your resume in such cases is to group them as “Roles & Responsibilities” and then list down your projects. If you had any unique tasks under those projects, just list them.

Role details for professionals working in Business operations or Corporate functions: Unlike technology professionals, many a times, professionals from Business Ops or Corporate functions may not have too many differences in their roles, but then, it becomes even more important to highlight different processes, tools, teams that you have had the experience interacting with. Mention the complexities of your role in smartest, impactful and minimal use words.  Please figure out relevant key words in your area of expertise and build a searchable resume.

Special projects (if any): Many professionals do get opportunities to work on special & highly visible projects. They may also travel overseas and carry international experience. These can be very complex not only in terms of the tech platforms or tools used, but also in terms of complexity of stake holders involved, Revenue generation dependencies, critical organizational strategy etc. Make sure to use your resume to highlight them where ever they are not confidential…

Achievements / or client endorsements: Building a great resume also means that credibility and endorsements are also mentioned. It is a good practice to include very relevant and notable achievements, mentions of client appreciation / awards that you may have received. But kindly avoid mentioning, monthly awards ..instead use the space to talk about bigger wins.

If you are in Sales or Revenue generation roles, your entire profile weightage lies on the revenue you have billed or booked. So use the space accordingly.

Personal details: Often I have seen that applicants mention personal details like parents’ details, passport details, spouse details, kid’s details etc.  Understand that not only do these details do not matter in the profile screening phase or later too but they take up space too.  At most, mention if you have a valid passport; It is advisable NOT to mention personal details of least relevance in the resume. You can always send the details later if requested by the organization.

Contact coordinates: Mention only necessary details like, your full name, mobile numbers (at max 2) and email id that you use most frequently. These are the important inclusions while building your resume.

3. Resume writing with finesse:

Building your resume should be done carefully, in a planned manner. I recommend my clients to chart down whatever, they would like to put in the profile. Once every thought, event, memory related to work, tasks, education, certifications is poured into the draft, the next step is to segment them or group them. Identify, repeated tasks, activity, non-relevant details and get rid of them. Do a full reading to compress it to the not more than 2.5 to 3 pages.

The visual appeal of the resume lies in how you have arranged the various segments.Maintain chronological order of event in your career, with most recent on top.This is applicable for academia, work exp, certifications, achievements etc.

4. Proof read, proof read, proof read…..

I can’t emphasis lesser on this fact. Your profile should be a piece of professional writing, skillfully arranged, with well chosen words . There is NO room for error, I mean zero tolerance for grammatical or spelling mistakes. The attention to detail (a quality considered very important in almost all job roles) is judged here, level 1. Take time to get this straight.

Remember, resume writing is an art and hence does take time. So be patient with the process. Sleep over your draft 1, draft 2, draft n and come back 2 to 3 days later to get the perfect final version.

5. Multiple versions of resume:

When you have a core version of your resume build, you may modify them in versions to enhance and suit them to the alternate roles you are keen to apply.

Word of caution: do no put in fake experience. Recruiters and Hiring Managers are trained to see that through. Integrity still reigns.

The recommendation is to have profiles, suitable to alternate role is to broaden your search horizon only.

So get going, start building your resume like a pro with these five tips.

Should you have any questions/ query feel free to reach out to me

If you found this article useful, please share it with your network and help in wider reach for benefit of others. During a job search every little help is a great help.

Wishing you the best in your job search! For more such blogs on career, interviews click here

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