by Victoria Price, 2015 AgCareers.com Marketing Intern
Crafting a resume or updating a resume can be challenging. It can also feel like employers don’t understand how much time you spent trying to perfect it. There are so many types of resumes and opinions on how to make the best resume, so what do you do? How do you create the perfect resume?
What to do
- Put contact information at the top including your phone number and email.
- Highlight skills you gained from experiences with a short detailed description.
- List all qualifications that could appeal to job.
- Use Chronological format to be concise and clear.
- Always have someone else review your resume before sending it to an employer.
On average a resume is only viewed for approximately 10-30 seconds according to the Career Resource Center at the University of Florida. In 10- 30 seconds an employer can decide to move you to the next level or forget all about you. So, in order to make sure your resume stands out you need to remember it is an opportunity to sell yourself. “Use it as a marketing piece for yourself,” said Tina Dorner, Talent Acquisition specialist for college programs at CHS. Typically, Dorner looks at a resume initially for about a minute and will spend more time once the resume moves to next level. Dorner suggested making sure your description of experiences and skills catch the eye of those reviewing your resume. “Think of short sentences to describe the skills that you have,” Dorner said. “Make it generic enough but not too generic, so that it can appeal to other positions you may apply for.”
Formatting a resume can make or break you. A typical resume should only be about one page, as it highlights who you are and, as Dorner said, “gets your foot in the door.” Chronological formatting is preferred by Dorner and Holly Betten, Talent Manger at Farmers’ Cooperative. “Chronological is typically the best [format] because it shows things in order, so if your career has developed the resume shows that and allows professionals follow [the development],” Betten said. She also emphasized that not listing all qualifications you may have, including any licensing, can be a disadvantage. Be clear, concise and thorough. “When the format is jumbled or has grammatical errors and misspelling, it can make you go in the ‘no’ pile,” Betten said. To avoid errors and misspelling, both Dorner and Betten say to have your resume reviewed and finalized by multiple people. The more eyes that review a resume, the better.
What not to do
- Be wordy or have multiple pages
- Forget contact information
- Include personal information and pictures Example: married with two kids
- Inconsistent formatting
Dorner said resumes that are too wordy, artsy or include too much information that could be shared in an interview are her pet peeves. Resumes should not be 5 pages long. To create more space, Career Resource Center at UF explains that font size can be as small at 10.5 and margins of .7, but not smaller. A pet peeve of Betten is when candidates do not list proper contact information. “I dislike having to email someone asking for their phone number,” Betten said. “To avoid this, remember to have others review your resume.” Betten also emphasized that one person may be good at checking spelling while another could be more grammatical. Properly review your resume to avoid errors. This will show that you have good attention to detail and really care about getting the job.
Since resumes are the first step in the door. Dorner advises job seekers to have a resume ready to bring to networking events. She said, “When you see a resume from someone you know it is more highlighted then when you don’t.”
So get your resume together and start taking that first step. AgCareers.com is a great place to start and has many job postings updated constantly. Check out these postings from CHS and Farmers’ Cooperative and see if you could be a good fit for any of them.