When it comes to crafting the perfect resume, the little things can make a big difference. A well-written, professional resume is an essential tool in the job search process, and even small changes can make it more effective in catching the attention of hiring managers. In this blog post, we'll share 20 insider tips that are crafted by Reczee Experts (professionals from FAANG and top product companies) to help you take your resume to the next level. From formatting and layout to content and style, these tips will give you the tools you need to create a resume that will make you stand out from the crowd and land your dream job.
1. Good font size
When it comes to formatting your resume, font size is an important factor to consider. A font that is too small can make it difficult for hiring managers to read and absorb your details, potentially leading to your resume being overlooked. On the other hand, a font that is too large can take up valuable space on the page, forcing you to reduce the amount of core content included in your resume. Finding the right balance is key to ensuring that your resume is both easy to read and packed with relevant information.
2. Chronology is very important
Using a reverse chronological order can be a helpful way to make it easy for hiring managers to scan through and find the most relevant information. This means starting with your most recent experience, education, or project and working backwards. However, if you have a specific piece of information that is particularly relevant to the position you are applying for, it's a good idea to highlight it in a prominent location on your resume. For example, if you're an experienced individual, your education should not be the first section on your resume. Instead, focus on highlighting your most recent and relevant experience and accomplishments.
3. Grammarly please
You only have a few seconds to catch the attention of a recruiter or hiring manager. In fact, studies have shown that on average, a resume is only looked at for about 10 seconds before a proceed/reject decision is made. This means that it's important to make every second count. If your resume contains typos or other errors, it's highly likely that you will lose those precious 10 seconds and miss out on the opportunity to make a good impression. To ensure that your resume is error-free and correctly formatted, consider using a tool like Grammarly to check for mistakes and improve the overall clarity and effectiveness of your writing.
4. Links are great
If you're a developer or engineer, having a strong online presence can be a key factor in getting noticed by potential employers. Just be sure to double-check the links to make sure they are working properly and that you have the necessary permissions to share any Google Drive links you include.Good
If you have no contributions on a specific platform, don't add it
Don't add participation certificates
5. LaTeX resumes only
It can be tempting to try and stand out by using a unique or custom template. However, this approach will most likely work against you. First, you don't know if all kinds of applicant tracking systems (ATS) will be able to parse and understand your new template, potentially leading to your resume being overlooked. Additionally, recruiters and hiring managers are used to seeing certain types of resume formats and templates, and may have difficulty finding and interpreting your content if it is presented in a new or unfamiliar way. For these reasons, it's generally best to avoid building your own template and instead stick with a standard, easy-to-read format that will be familiar to potential employers. Pick a LaTeX resume template and replace content. You can try free templates on overleaf.com!
6. Skip verbal proficiency
For tech roles, proficiency in English is usually assumed and does not need to be specifically highlighted on a resume. Instead of mentioning language skills, consider including a section on a specific project or achievement that demonstrates your expertise and relevance to the job. Mentioning language skills may be seen as filler or unnecessary information, especially in roles where communication is not the primary focus.
7. Write that Email ID
This is a very common mistake a lot of candidates make. Most of the ATS cannot parse an email ID if hyperlinked to a text, hence it is highly recommended you write your email ID explicitly. Some of the software might also auto-reject resumes if it cannot find some required fields from the resume.
8. Colors - max two
It's important to consider the use of color carefully. Using a single color, such as black, can make it difficult for reviewers to identify and follow links to your online profiles or other relevant materials. On the other hand, using more than two colors can be distracting and make it difficult for reviewers to focus on the content of your resume. A good rule of thumb is to use two colors on your resume: black for general text, with some variant of blue for links. This will help to make your resume easy to read and navigate, while also helping to highlight the most important information.
9. Blank spaces
Too much white space on a resume can be a red flag to potential employers. If you have less content than you would like, consider including course projects, achievements, or other relevant experiences. Alternatively, you can work on developing new skills and experiences by contributing to open-source projects or taking on other relevant opportunities. If you have already included all relevant experience and still have less content, you may consider adjusting the font size or layout to make the most of the space available. However, be aware that this can still be viewed as a red flag by some employers, and it's generally best to focus on developing your skills and experience rather than using formatting tricks.
When adding descriptions to projects/experiences, it's important to go beyond just listing the technologies you have used. While listing your tech stack can be helpful, it's generally more effective to describe what you have learned and accomplished through your projects and experiences. For example, instead of simply writing "used x and y," try to describe what you learned about those technologies and how you applied them in your work.
Similarly, providing a brief overview of the project you worked on, its impact, and your specific contribution can help to give context and depth to your skills and experience. As a general rule, try to stick to 2-4 lines per project or experience in order to keep your resume concise and focused.
Good ranks/ratings in popular exams, events, contests, etc.
Extra-curricular activity which you are really good at
Membership in communities/clubs
Participation in various hackathons, events, programs, etc.
Number of problems solved on coding platforms if less than 300 (over 300 it gets subjective based on the reviewer)
12. Kinds of fonts
It's important to use fonts in a way that is easy to read and professional. A good rule of thumb is to stick to a maximum of 2-3 different fonts on your resume. Preference is usually given to resumes that use one or two fonts with different font sizes or weights (such as bold, italics, or underline) to highlight key information. If you have copy-pasted text from elsewhere into your resume, be sure to ensure that it matches the overall font scheme of your document. This will help to ensure that your resume looks cohesive and professional.
13. Highlight smartly
Highlight only key phrases and words that will catch the attention of recruiters. One way to do this is to use formatting tools like bold, italics, or underline to draw attention to key phrases in the description of your work and achievements. However, it's important not to overdo it with these formatting tools, as highlighting everything can be as ineffective as highlighting nothing.
14. Proof-read your resume
Polishing your resume can be a valuable step in the job application process. A second glance at your resume can help you to identify and correct any mistakes that may have been missed in the first iteration. Additionally, getting your resume reviewed by another person can be helpful, as they can provide an objective evaluation of the content and ensure that it is relevant and makes sense. This can be especially helpful if the person reviewing your resume has experience in the field or industry you are targeting, as they may be able to provide valuable insights and suggestions for improvement
15. Skip that profile photo
Including a profile photo on your resume can be a tricky decision, as it can take up valuable space that could be used to showcase your skills and experience. Additionally, a photo can draw the attention of recruiters away from the main content of your resume, potentially causing them to overlook important information. If you do choose to include a photo, be sure to select a professional-looking image that is appropriate for the job you are applying for.
16. Single page please
When it comes to applying for tech positions, it's important to keep in mind that recruiters often have limited time to review resumes (10 seconds on average). Given this limited time, it's important to focus on showcasing the most relevant and impactful information on your resume. If your resume is two or more pages long, there is a risk that the additional pages might not be opened. To avoid this issue, consider trimming your resume down to a single page.
17. File name format
When submitting your resume for a job application, it's important to ensure that your name is included in the file name. This will help to identify your resume and ensure it is properly credited to you. In addition, it's generally recommended to save your resume as a PDF. PDFs are a widely accepted and portable format that can be easily displayed on various websites and platforms. In contrast, Word documents may not always display consistently on different systems, which can be problematic when reviewing resumes.
Good file names - JohnDoeResume.pdf, john-doe-resume.pdf, john-doe-software-engineer-resume.pdf,john-doe-november-2022.pdf
Bad file names - john-doe-(2).pdf, Simple-one-page-template.pdf, ModernCV-template.pdf, resume.pdf, latest-resume.pdf
18. No soft skills (non-managerial roles)
Generally it's best to focus on highlighting your skills and experience rather than soft skills. Soft skills, such as ownership, commitment, hard work, and communication, are important, but they are often included on almost every resume and may not be seen as a deciding factor in the hiring process. Instead of mentioning these skills on your resume, consider using the space to focus on your qualifications and achievements relevant to the position you're applying for. However, it's still important to be able to discuss your soft skills during an introductory call or interview with a recruiter. This can be an opportunity to provide specific examples of how you have demonstrated these skills in the past and to explain how they can contribute to your success in the role you are applying for.
19. Hobbies and interests
Including hobbies and interests on your resume can be a good way to provide some personal context and highlight your passions outside of work. However, it's important to keep this section brief and focused. A good rule of thumb is to stick to a maximum of 2-3 bullet points in this section. Additionally, you may want to consider choosing between including an "Achievements" section or a "Hobbies and Interests" section, rather than trying to include both. Having too many sections on your resume can signal that you have fewer projects, experiences, or skills to showcase, and it can make your resume appear less focused.
20. First impression
Since recruiters often have limited time to review resumes, it's important to make a strong first impression. One way to ensure that your resume is effective in communicating your skills and experience is to ask for feedback from others. Consider asking 10 people you know (preferably those who have experience in the field or industry you are targeting) to review your resume and give it a rating on a scale of 1-10. If the average rating you receive is less than 7, it may be a good idea to work on improving your resume. This could involve updating the layout, revising the content, or fixing typos/irrelevant information. We have created a template Google form for you to use for receiving feedback from your network.
In today's competitive job market, a strong resume is essential for standing out and getting noticed by potential employers. By following the 20 tips outlined in this post, you can help to ensure that your resume effectively communicates your skills and experience and makes a positive impression on recruiters and hiring managers. It's important to remember that the resume is the first step in the hiring process, so it's worth putting in the effort to make it as strong as possible.