Resume hacks - 5 tips to modernise your resumeJun 07, 2022
Are resumes dead!? Have LinkedIn profiles taken over?
If you’re talking about the old school, generic resume that you’ve made in Word 2007 that uses phrases like “uniquely qualified”, “seasoned professional”, and “goal-oriented”, then yeah - sorry to break it to you, but they are dead! 🪦
There’s no way you can position yourself as a high achiever and STAND OUT anymore with those generic resumes in the competitive landscape we have today. But you might want to halt the funeral proceedings for just a second because RESUMES ARE NOT DEAD. A resume done RIGHT is the most powerful thing 💥💥💥
A resume should be a tailored marketing pitch for one specific role with one specific person and problem to solve in mind. Resumes, how they look, and how you use them are evolving. We need to let go of some of the old resume concepts that we’ve been holding onto and do things a little bit differently (a.k.a like a BADASS)..
I’m all about encouraging people to take ownership of their resume because it’s YOURS and only YOU know your full experience and the impact you’ve had in these roles. That’s why I’m sharing my CV tips and tricks so you know how to write a stand out resume! Without further ado, here are my best resume writing tips 👏✍️
5 ways to modernise your resume
When it comes to resume advice, this could be the hottest tip! A niche statement will get your resume NOTICED. By niche statement, I mean including a headline or tagline underneath your name.
All you need is one POWERFUL sentence, so keep it very short and sweet. But what should you include in this sentence? It’s all about summing up who you are, what you do, and what impact you make.
Firstly, it's really important that it's unselfish. You want to make it all about them, not you, even though it's about you… Are you catching my drift? 🌊
Let me explain - if you’re the manager of a retail store, rather than just saying “store manager”, you could say something like “store manager driving business growth through innovative retail experiences”. I mean, how POWERFUL is that!? It sums up who you are, as well as the potential value you will bring to an organisation. Straightaway, it's a hook and it makes the recruiter want to know more.
Make it interactive
An important part of building a great resume is making it interactive. No longer are the days of a boring white page with some text slapped on it. We want to entice the recruiter to take ACTION.
You're going to have a much better chance of getting that interview if you bring your resume to life by making it interactive. It should feel like more of a two-way conversation.
As an absolute bare minimum, I recommend hyperlinking to your LinkedIn profile (👈 just like that) where a recruiter can learn even more about you! Taking it even further, I've had clients do things like craft a two-minute elevator pitch, film it, and link that on their resume too! Videos are a great way to really capture a recruiter's attention and build more of a rapport with them.
Also, if you've got any publications or articles that you've written, it’s always a good idea to link to that in your resume as well! 🔗
Optimise for the ATS
When you think about resume writing rules, optimising for the ATS (Applicant Tracking System) is the golden one 🤩
I talk about this a lot because according to a recent study by job scan, 98% of fortune 500 companies have an applicant tracking system which means they are using robots algorithms to analyse the content of your resume before deciding whether or not it even gets seen by a recruiter 🤖🤖🤖
That’s why you need to match keywords and language from the job post in terms of your skills and competencies. I go into much more detail about how to optimise a resume for the ATS in my Youtube video. However, the key takeaway is to match keywords and use industry language.
Focus on resume format
If you’re wondering “how do I fix my resume?”, especially when it comes to formatting, do I have a hack for you!! It’s important to have a modern CV design (Word 2007, is soooo out ❌).
But first, let’s start with length. You want it to be really engaging yet brief - think of it as a sort of teaser marketing document. If you've got less than 10 years of experience, I usually recommend just having a one-page pitch document as your resume. If you've got 20+ years of experience, it could be extended to two pages.
You're not putting every single thing you've ever done on there - it’s tailored to a specific role. On top of keeping it highly tailored, relevant, and brief, it's really really important that your resume looks sleek, modern, and stands out! My holy grail when it comes to resume formatting is Canva. It has some epic tools and templates that’ll help you create good looking resumes. It makes it especially simple to brand match your resume too (this will get you some brownie points 🍫).
Using the same colours and fonts as the organisation shows them how much effort you’ve put into the format which translates into how much effort you've put into getting the actual job. And believe me, it makes a difference when you're going for a role that's worth $100,000 per year or more!
You want your pitch document to scream: I'm worth 100k per year 📢📢
Bullet-proof personal brand
On the list of resume do’s and don’ts, this comes in at the TOP of the do’s! We are in what's called a personal brand economy where we are very much selling who we are as people, what we stand for, what our personality is, what our values are, and how that matches the culture and the values of the company. It's very much around fit and personal brand.
A good starting point is to ask yourself: what are the three words that I want to come to mind for the recruiter or hiring manager when they're reading this document?
Once you’ve finished drafting your resume, I want you to share it with friends, family members, or someone who will give you honest feedback and ask them “what are the three words this document says to you about me?”
A resume is a strategic marketing document and it's your opportunity to craft your story, so double-check that your intention is actually a reality when you tick it off with your family and friends.
So, next time you hear someone say “resumes are DEAD”, keep in mind that they’re not dying, they’re simply evolving. We have to approach the way we do resumes a little bit differently in today’s highly competitive job market.
Now that we’ve covered what to include, here’s what NOT to include in your resume. If you want to see an example of a resume that works, looks sleek AF, has great content, and ticks all the key boxes, I’ve linked my Killer Resume Cheat Sheet - thank me later 🖤