In order to be outstanding, a resume needs to check off a number of boxes. It doesn’t help that your competitors are at home trying to figure out how to improve their resumes to match or surpass yours. And to top it all off, recruiters will only pay you attention for around 7 seconds before moving on to the next applicant.
Don’t give up, though, just yet. To ensure that your resume stands out during the hiring process, we’ve created the ultimate resume critiquing checklist.
Find out how by reading on.
Why You Need a Resume Critique
A resume critique is an examination of your resume to identify any areas for improvement in its structure, presentation, content, and relevancy. You have the option of doing a resume review yourself or using one of the many online resume review services.
It goes beyond just reviewing your résumé with a red marker and ripping it to pieces.
Many people believe that their resumes are perfect and don’t see the need to have them critiqued. But there are two factors that work against us:
We are subjective on the content side. We appraise things we make less critically because we have an emotional attachment to them.
Technically speaking, self-editing is not optimal because our brains already perceive what we intended to say.
A resume critique, particularly one completed by a knowledgeable third party, may offer a new, expert, and objective viewpoint on your resume. It can provide constructive comments on your presentation as a candidate as well as on how well your resume addresses the demands of the hiring manager.
Who wouldn’t want it, though? After all, a stronger CV will increase your chances of landing an interview.
Resume Critique Checklist
You are not required to employ an online resume review service. You may use our resume criticism checklist to guide you through the resume review process and help you decide when it’s time to send your resume.
Resume Format and Style
Your ability to convince the hiring manager that you have the necessary abilities and work experience depends on your choice of resume style.
- Have you selected your ideal resume format? (functional format, reverse chronological format, or a combination of these)
- Have you adequately prepared your resume? Make sure you have:
-Resume margins of one inch on all sides.
-12 point resume typeface that is professional.
-Everywhere uses a single or 1.15 line spacing.
-Sections of the resume have labels.
-Between each section header, use double spacing.
-For simpler reading, use bullet points rather than phrases or long blocks of text.
-A resume with an optimal length of one page (two pages are acceptable if you have additional experience).
-Your resume was saved in PDF format.
- Is the resume template suitable for the field you’re applying to (for example, vibrant designs won’t be as effective in conservative fields as they will in advertising/marketing)?
Sections on your resume make it apparent to the hiring manager what they should be looking at and make it easier for them to browse. Recruiters only spend a little time reviewing each CV, so you should make it easy for them to locate what they’re searching for.
- Are all of the parts on your resume properly labeled?
- Do the parts of your resume stand out and draw attention?
- Is the information presented in each part relevant to that segment?
- Have you made a list of your greatest successes and accomplishments?
- Is the heading on your resume presentable and current?
- Is the resume profile you have interesting? Have you made the right decision on whether to use a resume objective or a resume summary?
- Do the relevant items in your job experience section each include no more than six bullet points?
- Does the information on the school, duration of attendance, and degree appear in the education section of your resume? Is your incomplete coursework for college or continuing education properly listed?
- Do you include relevant and important work abilities in your resume’s skills section?
- Does the information in the extra parts of your resume provide value and correspond to the job ad? Projects, accolades, language proficiency, volunteer work, interests & hobbies, publications, and licenses & certificates are a few examples of these.
Resume Content and Relevance
You’ve gone through each component of your resume; now it’s time to concentrate on the substance. There is minimal likelihood that the recruiter will invite you over for a job interview if the material doesn’t make reference to the job ad.
- Do you list your accomplishments and professional successes using action verbs?
- Have you made an ATS-friendly resume template using resume keywords?
- For simpler scanning, did you utilize bullet points rather than lengthy phrases or paragraphs?
- Are there notable successes and achievements on your resume as opposed to a long list of duties?
- Are you presenting numerical evidence to support quantifiable accomplishments?
- Have you customized your CV for the position you’re seeking?
- Have you displayed both hard and soft talents that speak to your personality and abilities?
- Does your resume read well (that is, does it make sense and flow nicely)?
- Did you at least double-check your resume for typos and other errors?
While reviewing your own resume may seem like a lot of work, doing it now can help you make it stronger and save humiliation and endless rejection letters in the future.
In the end, getting your resume critiqued is an investment in your future job!