Resumé Review & Tips 📝
When applying to internships or jobs, many applications require a resumé. In high school, it’s important to develop professional skills that you can authentically exhibit on your resumé, whether it be extracurriculars, volunteer service, or prior experiences. Remember that your resumé is the first step in the application process so it’s important to state your skills in an engaging, informational, and professional manner that will help you stand out in a sea of applicants!
What are resumés? 🤷
A resumé is a single-page document professionally showcasing your skills, achievements, and awards that ideally show you as the best candidate for the position. When employers look for the best candidates to move onto the next phase of an application process, they sift through resumés to see the what each applicant can contribute.
Fiveable’s Key Do’s 👍 & Don'ts 👎
We get it: resumé writing isn’t easy! So here are some key tips and tricks provided throughout the College & Career Readiness Series hosted by Fiveable in February 2021:
1. DO make sure the resumé is simple and easy to read 🔖
When hundreds of applications are being reviewed by the employer, they may only spend mere seconds reading your resumé. Make those numbers pop by having them in number form (think “11” instead of “eleven”) and try to make your resumé easy to read by using bullet points, active voice, and short, concise phrases.
2. DO tailor your resumé to fit the job or position you are applying for ✂️
Companies will be looking for applicants that stand out from the crowd. While personalizing the resumé toward a specific company or position may be time-consuming, the relevant details, experiences, and specificity will make your resumé stand out. It shows employers that you care enough about their company and the position, enhancing your chances. Remember, employers would rather have someone well-versed in and passionate about their company than someone who generically sent the same resumé to a bunch of other companies!
3. DO use action words and list specific skills you have 💥
You’ll want to showcase some of your skills — try to be specific, and try to make sure you’re not using description words used on every resumé. You’ll also want to list platforms you’re experienced with that are also specific to the company you’re applying for, like Microsoft Word, Excel, and WordPress.
As for action words, stronger descriptors might include words such as communicated, initiated,
. You can view a bigger list here
of strong action words.
4. DO use a professional font 👔
You’ll want to use the Times New Roman (the same font that you’d use for your English essays). Keep your font size between 11 or 12 points. Selecting a clear, readable font such as Times New Roman will help make your resumé look more professional.
5. DO make sure you have a professional email address listed 📧
Your email address should generally be professional and include your name. If it is inappropriate or has no connection to your name, you might want to consider having a business email on hand as it can improve your resumé’s professionalism.
6. DON’T include every detail on your resumé 😪
Your resumé should highlight the skills and experience relevant to the job. Think about it this way: a longer essay doesn’t necessarily mean it’s better. Make sure that you can cut down your resumé to highlight what you believe will show the company how much of an asset you’d be!
7. DON’T include your picture 📸
This is an arguable topic. Ideally, employers would hire you based on your experience, not your looks. Unfortunately, employers are humans too, and because of that, your physical appearance could lead them to make biased decisions, subconscious or not. To avoid this, make sure that employers and companies consider your application because of the skill sets you bring to the table rather than what you look like.
8. DON’T include your phone number or exact location 📞
As a Fiveable user, you’re most likely an AP or college student. Students typically shouldn’t be posting their complete personal information to employers because they’re not going to be applying for a full-time position. Your email address and LinkedIn username should be sufficient. Employers can request your location later in the application process or after you’re accepted.
Bonus Tips! 😎
What if I don’t have many job experiences to showcase? 😨
That’s okay! Extracurriculars and volunteer services are also strong and valid experiences you can show on your resumé. If not, try getting involved with clubs at your school and become a volunteer for a local non-profit organization.
Remember to ask for feedback ✋
It’s always good to have a second, third, or even fourth pair of eyes on your resumé even if it isn’t your first time writing one. Whether it be a parent, a teacher, or someone else you look up to, they might have some valuable constructive feedback to share!
Your resumé is never final — it can always improve 💪
There are always ways that you can continue to improve your resumé — whether it’s the tone, word choice, or perhaps even the tiniest grammatical tweak. The resumé is the first step you’ll use that will introduce you to an employer and showcase your abilities, so keep refining it!
Image Courtesy of iHIre
Additional Resources 🤓
is a job-search company that provides more details about how you can improve your resumé’s content!
The Fiveable Discord Community
also has a College & Career Readiness Center that includes feedback for resumés! Make sure to check it out and post your resumé so you can get some extra pairs of eyes on it.
Now go out there and write an amazing resumé!