A Recruiter’s Guide To Writing A Resume

When it comes to crafting your resume, it's essential to keep in mind the dual audiences it serves: the recruiter and the hiring manager. Recruiters typically spend around 20 seconds reviewing a resume, while a hiring manager may dedicate up to a minute. Therefore, a clean, well-organized format that presents the most critical information clearly is crucial. Utilizing free templates from platforms like Canva and Word can provide a strong starting point and there's no need to invest in a custom template.

To ensure your resume is ATS compliant, remember that most applicant tracking systems are basic software that primarily serves as digital filing cabinets. As such, if your resume is easily readable by a human, it's likely in good shape. 

The conventional length for a resume in the U.S. is one page, but it's becoming increasingly acceptable to extend it to two pages. However, anything beyond this is likely unnecessary. Allocating six bullet points for each role held within the last decade and succinctly listing previous roles can help condense a lengthy career into one or two pages. Consider using hyperlinks for each company to save space and allow recruiters and hiring managers easy access to unfamiliar businesses.

Your resume should ideally balance responsibilities and results. Instead of solely focusing on responsibilities, allocate equal space to detailing the results of your work. Try using the X-Y-Z framework when describing results, emphasizing quantifiable achievements where possible.

If your resume is rejected by the ATS, there may be issues with the parsing functionality. In such cases, it can be helpful to manually re-enter the most recent employer and job title in the ATS and save your resume as a PDF to ensure the intended format is maintained for the recruiter and hiring manager.

To gauge the effectiveness of your resume, consider seeking feedback from friends and family members who are unfamiliar with your industry. The objective is to convey your role and achievements clearly, avoiding industry-specific acronyms and jargon. A well-crafted resume with a balance of responsibilities and quantified results should position you well for most roles you're applying to. If you find yourself constantly rewriting your resume for each application, it may indicate issues with your search strategy or the core content of your resume.  

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