Tag Archives: resume writing help

5 Things That Make Your Resume Unreadable

The goal of writing is always to articulate your point clearly—and that’s true whether you’re penning a novel, a company blog post, or your own resume. A resume that is unclear, or that makes the reader work way too hard to find the desired information, isn’t going to be much of an asset to your job search. In fact, it’s probably just going to be discarded. Recruiters and hiring managers tend to get a lot of resumes for any open position; if yours is the one they have a hard time deciphering, there’s not much point in them keeping it around.

So what makes a resume such a chore to read? There are a few common resume design elements that fall under that heading. Here are five of the most common—all things you definitely want to avoid.

Making Your Resume Unreadable

A Lack of White Space

The eye naturally wants to see some empty space on the page—not just one big block of unbroken text. So when you put in super-thin margins, tiny fonts, and no real breaks in your resume narrative, that makes the whole thing look like a headache. We know you may want to condense 30 years of work history onto one page, but there are better ways of achieving brevity in your resume.

“Unique” Fonts

Calibri and Helvetica are a couple of font choices we really recommend. Anything else is immediately on shaky ground. These are the agreed-upon resume formats because they’re easy on the eye; don’t risk the use of a fancier font, which might just be annoying for your reader.

Too Much Industry Jargon!

You want to make it clear that you know your industry well, but you also want to make sure the resume is readable to someone who isn’t in your field—as many recruiters won’t be. Try to avoid industry buzzwords as much as you can.

A Lack of Metrics

Here’s a little secret: A lot of hiring managers and recruiters like to skim resumes before really reading them in earnest, and what they’re looking for as they skim is numbers. Metrics and statistics catch the eye and make your resume more appealing. Include them when you can.

Poor Spelling or Grammar

Spelling and grammar matter because they make your resume easier to read—period. Typos are inherently confusing, to say nothing of unprofessional. Proof well!

Write Resumes That Get Read

Anything that makes your resume harder to read is compromising your job search. It’s vital to make your resume easy to digest—and that’s something the Grammar Chic resume writing team can help you with. Contact us today for a resume consultation. You can reach us at www.grammarchic.net or 803-831-7444.

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4 Ways You’re Unintentionally Slowing Your Job Search

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Job hunting is usually not a very casual business: More likely than not, if you’re seeking a new job it’s because you desperately need or fervently want one, sooner rather than later. You don’t have the luxury of time, and you wouldn’t dream of doing anything that would slow your process.

Or at least, you wouldn’t do it on purpose—but what if you’re accidentally impeding your own progress, using job search strategies that slow things down rather than move things forward?

Strategies that Slow Your Job Search

We’ll show you what we mean. These are just some of the approaches that can add days, weeks, or even months to your quest for employment—in other words, strategies you’ll want to avoid!

Taking a shotgun approach to applications. Applying for every job you see may seem like a great idea, but actually it decreases, not increases, your odds of finding employment. That’s because you spend way too much time applying for jobs you’re not suited for or wouldn’t really want. It’s far better to make a targeted list of employers and to really be judicious about the companies you apply to, and then to pour more time and effort into those companies.

Sending generic resumes and cover letters. As you target specific employers, you’ll want to make sure your resume and cover letter matches, which means tweaking each one to fit the company you’re applying for. Generic resumes and cover letters are easy to spot and may make the hiring manager think you’re unserious about the position—which means your application is really just a waste of your time.

Submitting resumes that are way too long. For the vast majority of jobseekers, a good resume length is somewhere between one and two pages. There are rare instances where more than two pages is fine, but—unless you’re a C-suite executive or a PhD—you’re probably wasting time and turning off employers when you send them lengthy, rambling resumes.

Neglecting your LinkedIn page. Think social media is a waste of time? Think again. Most employers now do their homework online before they call you in for an interview—so if your profile isn’t optimized, you may be missing a lot of opportunities. Spending an afternoon tweaking your LinkedIn page can be a significant investment in your job search success.

To speed up your job search, move on from these unproductive strategies—and if you need help, don’t hesitate to ask us! Reach out to Grammar Chic at www.grammarchic.net, or 803-831-7444.

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Filed under Job Search, Resume Writing, Resumes