Top 6 Things You May Be Forgetting On Your Resume

by Rich DeMatteo on March 27, 2012 · 12 comments

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Mike Ryan is a Search Marketing Specialist at iProspect and a Managing Partner/Resume Consultant at the resume writing service, DreamResume.  Mike has a great depth of experience, starting as an hourly employee at a startup and aggressively working his way up in the ranks, where he now drives digital success for the world’s best brands.  Connect with him on Twitter at @mikeryan2

As a resume consultant, I see a lot of resumes.  It never ceases to amaze me what people don’t put on their resume.  It’s important to make your resume stand out, but it’s equally important to make sure you don’t forget anything!

Here are the top 6 things you might be forgetting to put on your resume:

Keywords Tailored to the Position and Industry

Most companies use applicant tracking software, which scans resumes for keywords relating to skills, experience, education, job-specific phrases and certifications. Make sure your resume gets through the electronic gatekeeper by using keywords and phrases that are related to the position’s desired qualifications.   Make sure to not only use keywords from the job description, but also look up keywords specific to your industry.

Contact Information

This may sound like a no-brainer, but I’m shocked at how many resumes I see with very little or no contact information.  Make sure to include your name, mailing address, cell phone number, and email address.  Forgetting these could cost you the job only because the recruiter can’t contact you.

Extra-Curricular Activities

This is a great opportunity to build your character on paper, especially if you lack industry experience.   Brainstorm activities that relate to the position or just reflect on your positive traits.  These activities could include sports, clubs, volunteering, community service etc…  Show the employer that you are proactive and motivated.  Additionally, you never know what might catch an employer’s eye.

Action Verbs

Action verbs should be used abundantly throughout your resume and cover letters to promote your achievements. They help make a strong impression and give your resume power and direction. Here’s a list of action verbs from DreamResume that you can use to make your resume more powerful.

For Marketing Industry: Social Media Profiles

Are you applying for a marketing position?  If so, you might consider adding your social media profiles to your resume.  Always check to make sure the content on your social media profiles is appropriate and consistent with your resume.

For Entry-Level Job Seekers: Relevant Coursework

Are you looking for an entry-level position and struggling to come up with things to put on your resume?  Add relevant courses that would be applicable to the position.  If this is a marketing position, add your most advanced marketing classes in a relevant coursework section.  This will increase your chances of landing the job, especially if have no other related experience.

These are the most common elements that I see missing in resumes.  Give your resume a close look to see if you have these items, it may be the difference in landing your dream job.

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8 comments
BridgetLelay
BridgetLelay

Great article! I think that in the ultra-competitive job market we exist in today, it's essential to put forward every advantage you have.  Otherwise, someone will eat your lunch without a doubt.  A related tip I would offer is to create some sort of portfolio of work together online for employers to reference.  This is particularly crucial for many IT or design related jobs. I read an article recently giving tips on creating an online portfolio, what to do, what not to do, etc. (particularly for web designers, but applicable to anyone) if anyone's interested.

http://www.jobs.net/Article/CB-97-Talent-Network-IT-Presentation-is-Everything-150-Portfolio-Dos-and-Donts-for-Web-Designers/

StevenTAustin
StevenTAustin

I say do not include your mailing address. No one is going to mail you anything; this is not 1980. Also, employers may assume that you are "too far" from the job. Don't give them the satisfaction. Make them call you and talk to you.

Dean Giles
Dean Giles

Getting the right keywords or keyword phrases in your resumes or online job applications is paramount to getting in the door. It is worth taking the time to individualize the resume and the application specifically for the job you are applying for to make sure you get past the automated application system to real people that may be able to hire you.

Tom Gimbel
Tom Gimbel

This is great resume advice for job seekers, Mike. One thing that's truly essential is using industry vernacular on a resume. It demonstrates competency and understanding of the position and organization. Employers absolutely look for these key terms on resumes and listen for them during interviews. As for your advice for entry-level job seekers, relevant coursework should absolutely be included. Other items I would suggest including are past leadership experiences, community involvement and volunteer work, as well as internship experience. Here's a great article that details all these elements: bit.ly/HV9Qs9

TB at bluecollarworkman
TB at bluecollarworkman

The part about "action verbs" is really important. A friend of mine wasn't getting any interviews and finally decided to dissect his resume and see if his problem was there. From someone's suggestion he put in action words and he made sure that words from the job ad were in there. I swear, the guy got an interview the next week! It was nuts.

Kate
Kate

I like the idea of adding social media profiles, really shows you are immersing yourself in the marketing world. I have seen QR codes on resumes, that was a good way to stand out Good advice though...especially for recent grads.

Mike Ryan
Mike Ryan

Thanks! QR codes are a great suggestion. I've used QR codes to link to an employee's certification or test scores, it's a great way to fit more information on the page without taking up the real estate.

Mohit
Mohit

I think most of the time entry-level job seekers forget to do research and placing appropriate keyword on their resume.

WATRL
WATRL

Don't forget to do your research into the company - what sort of person might they be looking for? It's worth tailoring specifically to an employer, not jsut a market.