Your resume is something that you should continually be editing, but life often gets so busy that it is forgotten. The ways to optimize your resume are also constantly changing, so what may have been a great resume 5 years ago, now fails to get the attention of a hiring manager. However, resumes take time to edit to perfection, so I am going to share with you 5 quick fixes you can make to your resume right now to help jumpstart your resume writing/editing process!
1. Add your LinkedIn hyperlink in your header
The world is becoming increasingly digital, so LinkedIn has become your virtual business card. If you do not have a LinkedIn, I highly recommend creating one! If you need help, BrandResumes offers a LinkedIn Profile Development service that will help you with creating or upgrading your LinkedIn profile. Regardless, it is beneficial to include your personal LinkedIn hyperlink on the header of your resume alongside your other contact information. I would like to note that on the header of your resume, you would only include part of the hyperlink, so it would appear as “in/firstname-lastname,” for example. If the “first name-last name” hyperlink is already taken by someone else, some ways to still customize your link are to take away the hyphen, add a number 1 after your last name, or add a middle name.
2. Do not include your full address
In the past, it was good practice to include your full address on your resume. This is no longer the case as it is very personal information and unnecessary for a hiring manager to know exactly where you live. Instead, all you need to include is your City, State or Greater City Area. For example, you could put Huntington, NY as your location or Greater New York City area. This allows the hiring manager to know where you are located without the unnecessary detail of exactly where you live. As a result, it is a safer way to provide your location while also saving space on your resume.
See below for one example of an optimized resume header:
3. Add/Update a Skills section
One goal of your resume is to exhibit your professional experience, but employers are also looking for what skills you possess. A common misunderstanding is to explicitly include soft skills on your resume, such as problem-solving and time management. Although soft skills are beneficial to have, they should be implicitly represented in the bullet points in your professional experience section. A skills section of a resume should include more hard skills, such as Data Analytics or Adobe Creative Suite. Hard skills involve more technical or professional skills that were learned through experience. The skills section should usually be 1-3 lines, unless your field requires more extensive technical knowledge.
4. Remove unnecessary or outdated experiences
Resumes are typically supposed to be 1-2 pages, depending on your field and level of experience. However, experiences that are from 15+ years ago may be taking up unnecessary space on your resume. If you deem these professional experiences to be necessary to include on your resume, try putting them in an additional experience section instead. This section would include the experience without the additional bullet points found under more recent experiences. The bullet points that would be under these experiences can instead be included on your LinkedIn. Your LinkedIn is extremely important in expanding on information that either cannot fit on your resume or is considered unnecessary. Volunteer experience is an example of something that may not be beneficial to include on your resume, but should definitely be included on your LinkedIn. When determining whether to include an experience or not, think to yourself if it’s something a recruiter would really want to see on a resume.
5. Move your Education if you have Graduated
This is probably the most simple fix for your resume. If you are still in school or a recent graduate (within the past 6 months), include your education at the top of your resume. Otherwise, your education should be the last section on your resume. I would also like to note that an education section post-graduation should just be: your school’s name, location, degree(s) earned, and Month/Year the degree was achieved. GPA and coursework are both pieces of information that should be excluded from your resume once you graduate, but can be included on your LinkedIn profile.
If you completed each of these 5 quick fixes, congratulations, you just made small steps towards an improved resume! The easiest way to update your resume without pulling your hair out is to continually make a few changes to keep it up-to-date, especially if you had a recent accomplishment. However, not everyone has the time to make the not-so-quick fixes to their resumes, so hiring a professional resume writer is also an excellent option to consider. Remember to keep checking the BrandResumes blog for more content on improving your resume and overall career.