It seems like we’ve been talking about the year 2020 for years and it’s less than a month from now! Is 2020 the year you will make a job change? Do you have 20/20 vision when it comes to what’s needed for a resume today?
The requirements and expectations for resumes have changed many, many times in my 32 years in the recruiting and staffing industry. And Aureus Group has more than a 50 year track record working with thousands of hiring managers. We listen to what they expect to see on candidate resumes. Then we compile all those expectations and create what I like to call, “Resume Best Practices” to address hiring managers’ concerns. So what does the resume for 2020 need to have on it to increase your chances of getting an interview and a new job? Read on, my friends, for the top 10 resume rules to help you get the interview.
1. Under your name at the top, include all the ways an HR professional or hiring manager can reach you. Include city, state, and zip code, cell phone, land line, and email address. If you have a LinkedIn profile, include that as well, and check to make sure that your profile is current.
2. Put any certifications behind your name at the top, especially if they’re relevant to a specific opportunity in which you’re applying.
3. Sections of your resume should be in this order and include: a) Objective or Summary of Qualifications, b) Technical Summary for IT Professionals, c) Work History, d) Education.
4. Use an objective if you’re applying to a specific position and reference it in your objective. Also use an objective if it’s difficult for the reader to immediately understand what it is you do and what you’d be looking for in your next position. If neither of those apply, use a summary of qualifications section: list 3-5 bullet points that highlight and address your knowledge, skills, and experience.
5. The chronological style resume is most preferred. Using a functional resume sends a red flag to the reader and some assumptions are made such as: a) your work history is poor and you have large gaps, b) you don’t have much work history at all, or c) you want to make a complete career change. The most recent or current employer and position is listed first.
6. Use correct dates of employment in the work history. If you worked for an employer for several years and had multiple positions, show the total years there next to the company and then dates of each of your positions as well. Only list the name of the employer once. Formatting it this way easily shows your career progression within that company. Include months with the years each time.
7. Bullet point format is ideal. Bullet points are easy to read, and will likely be read. Paragraph format…not so much. The most important bullet points should go first. If you’re applying to a specific position, any experience you have relevant to that position should be listed first.
8. For the education section, list higher education only and don’t include the date you attended or the date you graduated, unless you graduated in the past 1-2 years. Dates of education will be required on the application and shouldn’t be included on the resume.
9. Keeping it short is so last year! Our hiring managers tell us that LESS is not MORE. Especially if you’re in the Information Technology sector, they want to see the technology you use and how you use it. Now, I’m not telling you to create a 10 page resume, but 2-4 pages is widely accepted and expected.
10. Spell check, spell check, and spell check again.
One of the services recruiters provide at Aureus Group is assisting with our candidates’ resumes. The market changes and so do the preferences for how resumes should look. Unless you’re talking to a recruiter in our business, there’s no way to know what’s expected today. If you use these rules and guidelines, your resume will be most marketable and relevant and increase your chances of it being read and getting you an interview. After all, that is the goal. Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!
Linda Aughenbaugh, Executive IT Recruiter
Linda Aughenbaugh has been in the recruiting and staffing industry for 30 years. Linda has been with Aureus Group’s IT/IS division for more than eight years in several different capacities, including Account Manager, Recruiter, Recruiting Manager, Branch Manager, and Executive IT Recruiter. She has held different positions with other firms as well, including Franchise Owner of a franchise staffing service for nearly 12 years, Director of IT Contract Staffing, and Branch Manager. She has received numerous awards and has achieved President’s Club seven times. She has a true passion, determination, and drive in helping people improve their career situation and for finding the right talent at the right time for her clients.