1. One Page
According to a recent study, recruiters spend an average of 6 seconds reviewing an individual resume. As an applicant, it’s incredibly important to make those few seconds count. Scanning becomes increasingly difficult if a resume is hard to read, poorly organised or exceeds 1-2 pages.
You should try to include as much as you can without making your resume appear cluttered. Keep it clear, consistent and straight to the point. It’s important to figure out what’s not relevant and remove that from your resume.
2. Keep it Simple and Consistent
Arguably the most basic piece of advice, yet the most important: get the fundamentals right. This includes no spelling or grammar mistakes. Even one small spelling mistake demonstrates a lack of attention to detail. Make sure you have at least one other person review your resume as they might pick up on something that you missed.
Your resume is not the time to get fancy. Stick to a basic font and size and avoid any colours or pictures. Remember that the content of your resume is the most important thing, not how colourful it looks.
3. Quality over Quantity
Quality over quantity! Your resume is not a life story. Try to look at things from the reader’s perspective and think about how much value each achievement adds. For example, working at a coffee shop for 3 months when you were in Year 9 probably isn’t that important.
Avoid dense blocks of text and use bullet points to call attention to your most noteworthy and relevant accomplishments. Showcase your biggest accomplishments in concrete terms rather than generic role responsibilities.
4. Reverse Chronological Order Works Best
It’s important to prioritise the content of your resume so that your most important and relevant experience is listed first. If you are someone who doesn’t have any relevant experience in the field you are applying for, consider listing your education first.
5. Make Your Contact Info Prominent
You don’t need to include your address, but you do need to include a phone number and a professional email address. If you still have the same email address from when you were in Year 8, you should probably think about getting a new one.
6. Figure Out What Makes You Unique
This is definitely the hardest tip to implement. Big Banks and Accounting Firms receive thousands of applications each year so you need to figure out what sets you apart from everyone else. Most people applying will most likely have the same degree as you, so you need to make sure your resume stands out.
Do this by asking yourself: why would this firm want to hire me? Do I have a high GPA? Do I have a long list of extracurricular and volunteering experience? Do I have relevant work experience?
It’s important that you highlight these things but still remember to follow the other 5 tips when doing so.