The Resume-Writing-Critique
Resume Readiness Checklist

Performing a resume-writing-critique will double-check that your resume-checklist has been followed.

Make sure that details pertinent to your application have not been omitted. This is important to do and better you do it, before the prospective employer does his resume-scan and resume-evaluation of it.

The good reason for this, is because resumes today may get a 30 or 45 second scan at best, especially if you are in a highly competitive job market.

Always Assume That This Is The Case Wherever You Apply

As always, time means money. Recruiters are always hard-pressed for time, and decisions are made in a split second. They need to be made fairly quickly when there are openings to be filled. The better your resume-writing-critique was, the happier they will be, and your resume will stand out over the rest.

A keyword-rich resume will be obvious during the quick scanning process done by a recruiter.

Are you using actual words and phrases that reflect the scope of the industry, and are appropriate to the position?

TIP - Do a scan yourself of advertisements relating to the field you are in, and take note of key phrases. Familiarize yourself with the terms common to that job or field. Be aware that what is important to Hiring Personnel from one company, may differ from what is deemed valuable by another.

If you can meet the requirements of a resume-checklist as to general presentability and visual appeal, you stand a much better chance of making it to the next level of scrutiny, which is the information actually contained in your resume.

Being able to answer positively in regards to specific areas of your resume, will confirm that you are on the right track.

This takes into consideration proper format, pertinent information, and specific wording.

Does Your Resume Look Like It Has A Professional Design?

Bring a little bit of originality into it to avoid using the most often vague same-old templates, especially if you have been using the same one for years. A good resume-writing-critique also includes "updating" when necessary.

Does Your Resume Look Polished?

Is it easy to read? Is it properly and clearly spaced?

Do you see a lot of white space on the page?

Are the fonts used basic and clear or hard to make out?

Fancy fonts are not necessary. They look too "busy" and can irritate the eyes of the reader.

Have you used bolding or bullets to aid the eye of the reader all the way through?

Can you easily see an equal balance between the text and the white areas of the pages?

Are the margins even and consistent all the way through?

Does the second page (assuming there is one) have a proper heading?

Was there a good page break made from page 1 to page 2?

Is page 2 consistent with fonts, bolding, white spaces and the margins that were used on page 1? It should.

Are Your Resume Information Sections Clearly Self-Explanatory?

Proper labeling of your specific information is important.

Again, it's all about the quick resume-scan for information pertinent to the position being advertised. Recruiters want to spot this aspect quickly.

Stating A Career Goal or Objective? Is It Placed Near The Top In Headline Form?

Does your goal target something specific or non-specific?

Objectives are generally geared to something in particular and relevant to the "meat" of your resume. The reader will spot the correlation as he scans your resume information. During your resume-writing-critique, let your own eyes do a quick scan for that correlation as well.

Can you spot it?

Are Your Resume Sections In Good Order?

Are your strongest skills and credentials listed first?

Is your employment history listed by most recent work experience first? This is referred to as reverse chronological order.

Are You Providing A Pertinent List of Career Accomplishments?

Did you back-up these claims with some facts or figures?

You can refer to "increased numbers, dollars saved, percentages" and that kind of thing to show what you achieved at your last place of employment.

Everyone has job responsibilities; not everyone can lay claim to "accomplishments."

These are two separate items, and should be divided accordingly."

If you can't speak in terms of numbers, perhaps you can briefly talk about how you implemented a different way of doing something that saved time. Perhaps you created "something" that boosted staff morale. Perhaps you were able to accomplish the work of two when short-staffed for a long period of time. Did you do something that increased community awareness of the business?

During your resume-writing-critique, don't dismiss these extras.

These are all worth mentioning, and highly indicative of sought-after personality traits to most employers.

Awards, Affiliations and Relevant Volunteer Experience are points to be included as well.

Is There A Summary Of Qualifications Included?

This info can be visually scanned quickly as to the value and relevance of those qualifications to the position advertised.

Is the length of this resume reasonable in view of the career level position?

Also, based on this "career level", does this resume scream "professionalism" or not? What does your resume-writing-critique tell you when you look at it?

Typos, Grammatical Errors, Spelling

The biggest part of your resume-writing-critique, demands that your resume contain none of these errors. You will be immediately labelled as sloppy and careless if it does. There is no grey area here. No room for discussion. Proof-read! Have fresh eyes look it over as well.

Personal Information Listed?

Is there any sign of personal information regarding marital status, nationality, birthdate or age? Other than your contact information, there shouldn't be.

Last But Not Least

"Everybody can work together as a team, everyone is a team-player, everyone is a people-person, and everybody has excellent verbal and written communication skills."

These are great sayings, but they have become overly used.

These are examples of what is so commonplace on resumes nowadays.

Recruiters admit they are tired of seeing this, and consequently don't put much stock at all (if any) into these phrases.

These are valuable skills, and if you really do have them, great. The message here is, try to state it a little differently.

Come up with wording a bit more original to say what you want the employers to know as they are doing their resume-evaluations.

Just like the cover page, your resume can reflect your skills and abilities in a specific manner depending upon the profession you are in, and to what position you are applying for.

Professionals will disagree on different items, like what to say exactly and what not to say. They will disagree on what to add or leave out. That is a given.

The same basic rules and structuring however remains consistent to both.

Before you submit, a resume-writing-critique will confirm that your information is being presented in the best possible light.

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