- 1. Use a modern font
- 2. Choose the right document format
- 3. Remove the "References available upon request"
- 4. Use your home address strategically
- 5. Add links
- 6. Remove the cliché phrases
- 7. Delete personal information
- 8. Remove high school details and graduation date
- 9. Add the extra space between sections
- 10. Check the resume for mistakes
- 11. Upgrade your list of skills
- 12. Group skills by subcategories
- 13. Check the formatting for consistency
- 14. Be careful with contractions and abbreviations
- 15. Use eye-catching yet professional design
- 16. Paraphrase the job descriptions
- 17. Leave out your early work history
- 18. Cut down the list of job duties
- 19. Replace words with numbers
- 20. Ask for an outside opinion
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20 steps to excellent resume editing
1. Use a modern font
Change the traditional Times New Roman or Calibri to Arial, Helvetica, or Verdana. A plain readable font will not affect the content of the resume but will add points in the eyes of the hiring manager.
2. Choose the right document format
Save the document in PDF or DOC. These file types not only open correctly on most devices and in browsers but also will preserve the formatting. Change the file name so that it looks like “Olivia McCarthey_Account Manager”.
3. Remove the “References available upon request”
This statement is simply out of date. The modern strategy is to prepare your references on a separate sheet of paper and provide it to an employer when they request them.
4. Use your home address strategically
If you plan to relocate, it’s better to use a local address. Otherwise, the hiring manager might reject a candidate from another city or state. If you browse jobs in your area, using a full home address is not necessary. A city and zip will suffice.Your resume is your first touchpoint with the prospective employer. Therefore, it should clearly describe your work history and emphasize your professional strengths.Click To Tweet
5. Add links
Add links to your LinkedIn profile, an online website or portfolio, or GitHub (if you’re a programmer). Don’t include links to your private social media pages, but be sure to clean up the profiles. Today, recruiters form the first impression based on what they’ve found about the candidate in social networks.
Whether you're applying to your very first job, are an established professional changing careers, or are a mature job candidate applying for the first time in years, this book will teach you how to communicate your achievements so you can get hired.
6. Remove the cliché phrases
7. Delete personal information
Any private information is a big no-no for the professional US resume. Remove such details as age, marital status, religion, ethnicity, and political affiliation. Photo is not necessary either (unless you’re applying for a public-facing position where your appearance matters).
8. Remove high school details and graduation date
If you have a college degree, don’t list any information about your high school. And if you’ve graduated from college or university more than 5 years ago, you can delete the graduation date either. At this point, your experience is more valuable for an employer than education.
9. Add the extra space between sections
Nobody likes reading cluttered documents. Adding more blank space between the sections, as well as between jobs, degrees, etc., will make the document easier and more pleasant to read.
10. Check the resume for mistakes
Hiring managers don’t like typos and poor grammar. Proofread the resume manually or use an online spell checker to fix minor mistakes and typos. This simple step will help you make a far better impression on any employer.
11. Upgrade your list of skills
Add skills that you have recently acquired, either through education or in the workplace. At the same time, remove outdated ones, such as MS Word, the Internet, or Windows 98.
12. Group skills by subcategories
If you’re an expert in multiple areas, group your skills by industry or field of knowledge for better readability. For example, you might use categories like ‘Programming languages’, ‘Accounting skills’, ‘Languages’, etc.
13. Check the formatting for consistency
Make sure you’re using the same type of formatting for headings, lists, and job titles. In other words, if you’ve decided to use all caps for company names, do it throughout the document to keep the text neat and comfortable to read.
14. Be careful with contractions and abbreviations
Some of them might not be familiar to the reader. Use full words and decipher the abbreviations (or use both abbreviated and full versions of terms) to avoid confusion.
15. Use eye-catching yet professional design
Use no more than 1-2 colors in a resume to structure the document or highlight the most important information. If you apply for a creative role, i.e. graphic designer or social media marketer, you might use a resume infographic or simply use a brighter resume template.
16. Paraphrase the job descriptions
Whenever possible, focus not on what you did, but on the outcome of your work. Instead of ‘Answered calls and emails from customers’ say ‘Handled 30+ inbound calls and resolved customer complaints via email with 95% success rate” – it says much more about you as a professional!
17. Leave out your early work history
It’s not necessary to list each job you’ve ever held. Experienced professionals can remove the jobs they had over 10 years ago. Not only this will clean up the resume of unnecessary information, but also will make the document shorter.
18. Cut down the list of job duties
Hiring managers and resume writers recommend that you describe no more than 6-7 responsibilities and achievements for each of your past positions. Focus on responsibilities that are most relevant to the position you’re trying to get.
19. Replace words with numbers
Resume length is limited so this piece of advice will be of service. Write not “Managed twenty software developers across two departments” but “Managed 20 software developers in 2 departments”. Numbers are easier to read than words, and this trick saves space.
20. Ask for an outside opinion