5 Tips for a Winning Resume

We are pleased to have David Roper, founder of A-Script, share 5 tips about building a better resume.  Mr. Roper’s background includes extensive and wide-ranging career development consulting and lecturing, and teaching.  Techpros has been successfully referring clients to David Roper for a number of years and we have received many accolades about David for his work on resume writing. A well written resume is a necessary component to an effective job search. We are excited to be working in partnership with A-Script, to help make our clients’ job searches as successful as they can be.

Tip #1 – Keep Your Resume to One Page.

A resume is a snapshot of your qualifications as they match the needs of a particular position.  And a snapshot is one thing, not two.

Tip #2 – Your resume’s only goal is to prove that you’re worth the time that an interview takes. 

Your resume will have to beat the very quick first scan to lock the reader in; that initial look can be as few as five seconds!  If successful, your resume will get a second chance; it will then have to hang on to the reader and communicate your key value points and experience in under 30 seconds. If it asks the reader for more time, it may instead get time in the waste basket.  Beating the ‘first scan’ is essential.  The media has known this for years, using headlines and short leads to grab the attention of the reader.

 Tip# 3 -Your Resume is Usually Read by a Stranger About a Stranger. 

The reader’s interest level is often low as the page is unfolded; it is even lower as two pages are unfolded. In this day of junk mail and paper overload, the reading, not to mention the assimilation, of two pages of single-spaced text is a rare occurrence, even a phenomenon. Page two rarely gets read because readers know that the older, less-pertinent information resides there. Also, many readers feel that if you can’t say it on one page, you are not a concise communicator. Why run the risk of encountering one of these two-page resume haters when you won’t alienate anyone with one page. You may be thinking: “But I have twenty-five years of experience in the field. How could I possibly put all that on one page?  It’s an injustice!”  Sorry.

Tip #4 – On paper, you are more interesting to yourself than you ever will be to anyone else. 

Besides, the reader rarely cares about in-depth details of your early career years.  Your most recent years usually are most important, and need description.  For example, if you are now General Manager at Ace Gear Company, a detailed description of your prior years as Assistant Manager, Manager Trainee, and Clerk won’t be of interest to the reader. You need only show that you advanced through these levels and list key accomplishments in these positions.

Tip # 5 – Build your resume the way a skilled writer would build a short story, with every word playing an essential role toward communicating the story’s central message.  

Any superfluous words will weaken the power of the message. If you force yourself to think about the value and connotation of each word you put down, you’ll build a resume with integrity. You’ll build a resume that makes a strong, cohesive, focused, one-page statement about why you’re worth interviewing.  If something in your background is obvious, irrelevant, or pulls the reader the wrong way, leave it out! If you are in doubt, ask yourself the question: “Does putting this in strengthen my case in any way?”

At A-Script our resumes give the reader an appetite for meeting you. A good one-page resume will leave the reader with just enough of a taste to be hungry for more, rather than with a case of two-page indigestion.

David Roper | www.resumesbyascript.com 

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