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Writing a Resume: Dos and Don’ts to Keep it Interesting for Employers

The average time an employer spends looking through a resume is six seconds. Make sure yours is up-to-scratch.

A good resume can make the right first impression on any potential employer. The average time an employer spends looking through a resume is six seconds. Your resume should strive to capture their attention within that.

Dos for your resume

  • Customise your resume to your job applications
    Resumes should target the job’s specific requirements. A one-size-fits-all resume may give the wrong impression that you did not read the job description.
  • Highlight your achievements
    It shows potential employers how your experience can value add to their organisation. Your best accomplishments should be listed in the top half of the first page of your resume.
  • Organise your resume for readability
    By organising your resume, you can direct the reader’s flow. This allows you to showcase your relevant best points first, by placing them high up on the first page of your resume.
  • Use consistent font type and appropriate layout
    Avoid using different fonts and awkward spacings as it becomes difficult to read and understand. A well structured and consistent resume reflects how conscientious you are in your work.
  • Ask your coach or mentor to proofread
    They can spot errors you might have missed out, and provide alternative suggestions in phrasing or organisation of the information.

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Don’ts for your resume

  • Have heavy chunks of text
    Information should be to the point, as potential employers might not have the time to read it thoroughly. Descriptions should be short, simple, and concise.
  • Use generic pointers
    Words like “motivated”, “team player” and “passionate” are overused. Choose what describes you best, what you are comfortable with, and be able to justify if needed.
  • Add information that may create a bias
    A resume is a document to highlight your skills, experiences, achievements, and competencies. Information like race, religion, marital status, or even address, may create a form of bias against you.
  • Be unbelievable
    As funny as this point sounds, it is a common mistake. Be realistic in your claims. Over-exaggeration is obvious and distasteful.

Looking for more tips on resume writing? Get a free resume and interview guide today!

Asher Liew

Asher Liew is a Certified Career Coach and a Certified Professional Resume Writer, with over 7 years of experience in career coaching and facilitation to guide professionals find clarity in their careers. He is passionate about helping individuals to attain self-awareness and making informed decisions about their careers.

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