Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Can Others Understand Your Resume? Try This Simple Resume Review Technique


If the audience you send your resume to can’t understand the value you could bring to their organization in a matter of seconds, you’ll very likely not get a call to set up an interview.

Your Resume Makes a First Impression

You might think you know the first impression your resume is making but rather than assuming that you know, wouldn’t it be better to find out what kind of impression your resume leaves on someone who doesn’t know you and doesn't necessarily understand what you do?

This someone could be a non-technical co-worker, someone you play golf with, someone you socialize with or even someone you sit next to at your child’s sporting event.

Don't have a colleague who knows you and who understands your work review your resume. They may not be able to give you objective feedback.

Try This

Put your current resume in front of someone who doesn’t do what you do and ask them to spend 15-20 seconds reviewing the document.

When 15-20 seconds is up, take the resume away from the person who doesn’t know you and ask them what they remember from their 20 second experience reading your resume.

If the person who reviewed your resume can’t tell you:
  •  Who you are
  • Where you are
  • How you can be contacted
  • What you’re great at
  • How you’re educated
  • How you’re certified or credentialed
  • Where you currently work
  • What your current title is...

Your odds of generating interviews when you put your resume in front of recruiters or prospective employers is going to be low.

Resume Reality

Employers suggest that they give resumes 5-20 seconds of their attention before making decisions.  In 5-20 seconds, an employer and/or a recruiter will not have time to invest in interpreting what your resume means.  Your resume needs to be written in the language of its intended audience so it requires no interpretation by the audience.

If your resume is not built in a clear, clear and logical manner that enables a reader to capture the information they need in order to make an informed decision, you might want to consider a different strategy for your resume’s communication style.'s Security Recruiter Blog