Your Resume Check List

Before you submit that resume, have a 2nd and a 3rd look. Below are some do’s and don’ts to help you with your resume submission.

  • Your name (first and last) is bolded on the first page, followed by contact information (town/city, country, phone, email, linkedin) in a smaller font.  On subsequent pages include your name, email and phone number in a smaller font at the top of the resume.
  • Do not include personal information like:  marital status, children, father’s name (yes I have seen it on resumes), passport number or SIN number.
  • How long is your Professional Profile.  Keep it to 1 paragraph, 5 to 6 sentences and possibly a couple of bullets.  Make sure they highlight the skills you have that match the job you are applying for.  A 1-page profile will lose the interest of the recruiter after about the 5th line.  Keep it short and concise.
  • Is your Education listed with the highest degree on the top, followed by certifications and training in reverse chronological order
  • If you are applying for a technical position.  This is a good spot to list your most current technologies.  Needless to say if there are specific technical skills in the job ad and you have them, then put them in here so they will stand out.
  • The next section should be your Professional Experience.  Again the jobs should be listed in reverse chronological order, with the most current position first.
  • Do your achievements start with action words:  Develop, Create, Built, Performed, Managed, Coordinated, etc.  Here is a webpage with 100’s of action words or just type “List of Action Words” in Google.
  • NEVER NEVER NEVER start a sentence with “I” or “your name”.
    • “John created a test plan and test cases” or “I created a test plan and test cases” should become
    • Created a test plan and test cases.
  • Put your keywords from the job ad in your achievements as often as you can.  If the job is looking for someone who has worked on an “on-line banking system”  then say so.
    • Created detailed test plans for the CIBC On-line Banking System using Mercury Tools
  • If you notice that it is taking you a long time to read your resume, then it is probably too long, cut it down to 2 or 3 pages.  You can always put in a line that says
    • Detailed job information from 1999 and back is available upon request.
  • Hobbies – not needed on the resume.  This is a question that may come up at the interview to get the conversation going.  Be careful what you tell them.  Reading, Golf, Skiing, etc are probably good topics of conversation.  Telling your interviewer that you like to go to the casino every Saturday night might set off some warning bells for him.
  • References – don’t go on the resume, in fact don’t even put in the line “references available upon request”, that’s a known.
  • Take out the graphics, logos, graphs, pictures.
  • Don’t include a letter from your mother, yes it has happened.
  • Don’t lie on your resume, this is a legal document.
  • Have someone proofread it, have them read the job ad as well.

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