What do bull riding and writing a tech resume have in common? You can blow your chance in under eight seconds.
According to an eye-tracking study conducted by Ladders, recruiters spend an average of 7.4 seconds skimming a resume before moving on to the next.
How can your resume hold their attention?
It’s not as difficult as it sounds. Whether you are a software developer, a systems engineer, a data analyst, or another tech professional, use these tips to ride right into your next interview.
Recruiters spent the most time focusing on resumes that contained these elements:
- Clear fonts. Simple, easy-to-read fonts are best.
- Simple layouts. The faster a recruiter can understand who you are and what skills you offer, the better. Stick to a simple layout.
- Bolded job titles with a bulleted list of accomplishments. Include relevant job skills and experience in bullet points, not paragraphs. Recruiters scan for job titles and subheads first. Bold these items and create an easy path down the page.
- No more than two pages. The top length for experienced candidates is two pages. Eye-tracking analysis demonstrates that an engaged recruiter will spend another seven seconds on page two—but only if the first page was compelling.
Resumes that didn’t fare well also had a few things in common:
- Blocks of text. Avoid writing paragraphs of job descriptions that recruiters might instantly file under to do. There is no need to list responsibilities that are commonly assumed to be part of the job, and make sure you stick to your contributions, not the work of your team. Although your team may have done something that looks impressive on your resume, your lack of familiarity with aspects of the project might come out in the interview – or on the job.
- Poor layout with no bolded headers. Draw the recruiter in by creating a clear path to follow on the page.
- Keyword-stuffing. Although it is a good idea to tailor your resume to the position for which you are applying by using keywords included in the job ad, do not use those keywords excessively. Even if your resume is initially scanned by ATS software, it will eventually be read by a human. Humans only appreciate relevant keywords used in context.
Provided that your resume is easy to read, and your bullet-pointed skills and experience list has caught the recruiter’s attention, what else can you do to make your resume stand out?
In the best-case scenario, a human is reading your resume. Catch their interest by including something that shows who you are as a person. A hobby, fun fact, or charity involvement can make a recruiter want to know more about you.
Mention current tech side projects (as long as they are updated). Passion is key. The technology world evolves rapidly, and many tech recruiters are looking for team members who love the sector enough to tinker on the side.
In the competitive field of IT, resumes must quickly catch and hold the attention of recruiters. Want to know how yours stacks up? Prosum staffing experts can help!