What to Include and What Not to Include in a Resume? This is a common question asked from over half of clients every month. Maybe even more than half. Any one client could have two or three pages worth of a resume. Perhaps even Six or seven pages, depending. Not to mention up to 30 or more years work experience.
The truth of the matter is that while some information is required to feature in your resume, other material is not necessary. And studies have shown that the average time a recruiter spends looking at your resume is whopping six seconds. They have no time for page flips. In view of this, this write-up will educate, inform, and enlighten you about what should and shouldn’t be on your resume.
Another question remains: So, how many pages for my resume? It used to be that resumes should not exceed one page. I don’t know who wrote that rule. These days, however, most recruiters believe this ‘rule’ to be two pages (for most us).
Let’s break it down.
- One-Page for new graduates and entry-level.
- Two-Page for 10+ years of experience.
- Two to Four Pages for executives is the trend. Alternatively, one page with some attached addenda.
Are you wondering, “What are the absolute unbreakable rules of resume writing?” You are indeed not alone in your thinking. Few rules, per se, exist with resume writing. Trends come and go. However, the top rules shall and will always remain.
NEVER PUT ON YOUR RESUME
- Unrelated Work Experiences
- Political Information
- Marital Status
WHAT MUST GO ON A RESUME
- Name and Address
- Phone Number
- Linked-In Address (if you have one)
- Online Portfolio Address (if you have one)
Latest Trends in Resume Preparation
1. References Available on Request
Get rid of it. It is unnecessary to submit an application with references. It is not a bad idea, however, to prepare your references in advance and present them during your interview.
2. Your GPA
No need to worry about a GPA if you are not a student or recent graduate. And even then, this can be controversial. Some hiring managers say that you do not need to include your GPA in a resume if your industry does not request for it. On the other hand, if it is 3.0 or higher, some say, “Why not?” Assuming you are applying for a position in investment banking or engineering, it can be worth considering. There is a condition that can necessitate these inclusions, though, and that is honors. If you are a recent graduate with notable academic accolades, listing your GPA is a must-do. However: As your experience grows, it will be unnecessary to include it.
3. Company Descriptions
It is unnecessary to produce company descriptions for the entire organizations you have worked with. However, some organizations require that you describe them. Assuming you have worked for an unpopular organization, or a firm that many people have not heard about, you need to mention it and write a company description of 1-2 lines beneath it. Briefly explain what the company is about and what it does. After this, start highlighting your responsibilities in bullet form.
4. Computer Skills
Only add this information if you are applying for a job requiring computer skills. However, your discretion here is highly essential. For example, if you seek a position as a programmer or technician, and experience with a particular computer system is required, then, you should state a list of your computer skills. Otherwise, it is unnecessary to indicate that you are Microsoft proficient when your proposed job is unrelated to possessing computer skills.
More About What You May Not Know About Resumes
You can include internships in your resume if you have a short professional work history and are recent graduate or student. Assuming you are in your first or second job, this will help you. Apart from this condition, the only internships you should keep on your resume in case you have a long professional work history are the ones from top organizations like White House internship or previous positions that will add immediate value and project you as a top shot.
If you ignore this advice, you will only end up wasting space on your resume which you should have used to highlight your professional work history.
6. Your Address
The address is debatable. Some recruiters believe personal address should be removed for security reasons. However, in my professional view, it is necessary because some recruiters may just conclude that your refusal to include it implies that you do not live locally. This may put you at a disadvantage. Furthermore, if you are currently working in the same city that you are job-hunting, and it is indicated on your resume, you may decide to remove your address from your resume.
7. An Objective Statement
Remove this from your resume. Objective statements are no longer fashionable. You can substitute it with a summary statement which incorporates some powerful statements to highlight your skills and experience at the beginning of the resume. With it, a prospective recruiter can see what you are capable of offering at a glance.
8. Job Details
Resumes get long really quick. I know, I read them every day and can speak for professional recruiters. It is crucial that you insert only bullet points that will make the most impact.
The Proof is in the Pudding
Remember, it is not advisable to include what you cannot defend. Consequently, it is important to let your employers know how your time is being spent at work. It is, however, not necessary to let them know about the 60% of your job that you do not want to be branded by.
More importantly, concentrate on where you are going and not where you have been. Channel your details towards the intended organization you are targeting.
Hired Resume Service puts clients back on the right track with these points, so they can pinpoint the parts of their two and three-page resumes to retain, re-write and ditch out. Their resumes then become almost like works of art. Seriously. And recruiters love ‘works of art’.
The bottom line is that the improving and condensing we do with our resumes, our clients are getting interviews within just a few weeks of sending them out. This is what an effective resume can do. Need help? Our rates start at just $149. We have you covered here at Hired Resume Service.
Please don’t hesitate to call us at 612-400-5563 for a free consultation. Our certified resumes are professionally written to pass the Applicant Tracking System. We service every state in the country including, Minneapolis, Virginia, New York, Illinois, Utah, Ohio and Georgia.