IT Employment optimize

What hiring managers hate about your resume


So you say you've sent out 4 million resumes and have not gotten as much as a nibble? If you've got the right experience but you're just not getting your foot in the door anywhere, maybe there are problems with your resume. I recently asked TechRepublic members who are IT managers what kinds of things make them want to just chuck a resume in the trash.

You would do well to take a look at their comments and then go back and take a look at your resume. Are you guilty of any of these?

  • Grammatical/spelling errors Too much information (or as GSG says, "I'm hiring you for a job. I don't want to know about your 4 kids, that they are (in your opinion) little Einsteins, your dogs, your husband/wife, or your hobby of knitting little stocking caps for the poor little cold kittens.")
  • Information provided that the interviewer can't legally ask for (marital status, age, religion)
  • Unexplained date gaps in work experience
  • An overstatement of technical skills
  • Bad formatting (TiggerTwo hates "the failure to place the most important information in the top third of the page, lack of white space, a bunch of keywords that appear to exist only to be keywords, failure to provide a skills listing, use of less than 10 point font, and use of a difficult-to-read font.")
  • "If you can't tell from the resume alone if the owner is enthusiastic about (some aspects of) his previous job experiences, the resume is out."
  • Not highlighting actual results delivered
  • Overly long resumes. According to frostbite, "anything more than 2 pages is a hard read, more than 4 is a tome."
  • Here's a link to the full discussion. You'll find lots of good advice from experienced IT managers.

About

Toni Bowers is Managing Editor of TechRepublic and is the award-winning blogger of the Career Management blog. She has edited newsletters, books, and web sites pertaining to software, IT career, and IT management issues.

68 comments
RayJeff
RayJeff

I don't know if this has happened to anyone who has posted. But, there's one employer that I on a regular basis apply for open positions with. When you log in to your account on the HR website, find an open position and you apply...so far so good. Then, you get to the part where you either use the copy of your resume that you may have uploaded at an earlier time, upload your resume at the current time of applying for the position or you can copy & paste it in. So far so good. The problem is this. The system allows you to review your resume before applying it to the application. The resume is is converted to a PDF file because it's shown on-screen. For the life of me, I can not figure out why my resume comes out all jacked up! On the first page after the the biographical info, there is enough whitespace to where the beginning of my resume is at the bottom of the page: approx. 3 lines. Ok, so I thought it was my formatting of my resume: a Word document not in one of the pre-formatted Word resume styles. SO, I tweaked the resume a little. Tried again, same thing. Ok, so I tried uploading my resume as a Word Rich Text file, versus a straight Word file; Same thing. Copy & paste directly, same thing. It makes you wonder if the hiring managers realize that the systems has a serious flaw or not. On second thought, I think they do, because whenever I've had an interview, they would ask me for a copy of my resume during the interview; with that employer, I always take at least 4 copies of my resume because of knowing how my resume shows up. So, the problem must be in the HR end of it. So, one could assume that with the resumes being uploaded are being screwed by the system and an HR person looking at the resume and automatically dismissing it and thinking that the applicant is is the reason for the resume looking bad.

ncudmore
ncudmore

After over 20 years in IT, I've been looking to get back to work after a medical problem which was the reason I left my last job; and spent last year having several operations, before getting my OK in April. So, I have a 'valid' reason for being out of work for a period of time.... But, after speaking to a couple of recruitment agencies here in the UK, whilst my health is fine now, my situation is not! It seems because of this 'outage', my CV is just not worth them putting it forward! They would prefer to put forward people who are in work and looking! The person told me 'off record' anything over a six month gap and they will not look at it. Makes you wonder about people on maternity leave. This was not just a one off from a small outfit, but from one of the largest agencies. I've been in situations where I can't even get some of the agencies to return my calls.

visitorsx3
visitorsx3

What if your explanations, though brief, for the gaps in your working life, throw it over 2 pages? What if your jobs and qualifications list exceeds 2 pages? Maybe the problems are more to do with having a generic resume to submit to all jobs, instead of tailoring an application to directly address that you have the skills & experience requested on the job advertisement - then the hiring people know right away if you at least have covered the essentials they are looking for. That'd enable the applicants to be sorted according to who fits the criteria, and then their second, more generalised wordy CV wouldn't be such a chore to read through. Another concern - what if you try to fit a convention with your CV and in so doing are looked over by companies & employers that don't do things by the book - and those are exactly the types of places you'd prefer to work in. True, you can float more than one resume on a job database; given the varied preferences in presentation that is likely a good solution. If they all use online databases.

awk
awk

When you ask for all of the things that you want in a candidate that go beyond reasonable. The list includes technology pushed to the limit of its existence or beyond. Such as having DB2 experience prior to 1982 or even 1978 which was named System Relational, or System R. Combining job positions, such as java developer/COBOL legacy developer, into one title position. Asking for more years of experience for a minimum than what fits the job title. Such as a Mainframe Programmer II with 10+ years, where the title is only a 2-4 years of experience minimum. Asking for a senior position at a extremely low or non-existent base salary offer. Or a salary history or requirement. Such as an offer of for a Senior Mainframe Programmer of $45K-55K in a market value of 70+K(10 percentile) to117+K (90 percentile). So what does DOE mean? Don?t Offer Experience a fair salary? It use to be, for me, no problem of getting a job. And I still have recruiters offering me jobs - but as mentioned above. I?m looking for a long term job not some wimpy 3 week to 9+ month job. Especially when the recruiters don?t even read my resume of being a FTE (full time employee). The other main thing that seems to be going on in the background, in some cases, is there is a candidate already in mind. And you don?t have a chance due to favoritism/nepotism. Not asking for interviews with military or community service experience. If you don?t care for the people who care about you, it makes your job harder. I have well over 24 years in IT. I took my 5 page resume (comes from contracting) and shorten it to down 2 pages. Hasn?t seemed to help me. I do have some gaps in my resume. Duh, they are non-IT and in between jobs. Ask, I?ll tell you what they were. Enthusiastic - is relative. Ask this simple question. Do you like your job or do you like what you do (overall)? Followed by - What would you do to change it or grow in your career? For that matter - does a resume show community service? If it does.... ding ding ding. For those that are also unaware, if you work for the State/City/County. Salary is not always the tallest thing you look for. This is a community service. Ding, ding, ding. You could/should be offering these people double/triple/quadruple the amount they are making now. It would still should be within the normal salary range of the job title.

wrlang
wrlang

I dare say that 90% of all job postings have grammatical flaws and are exceedingly vague. I???ve read job duties that have nothing to do with the job title. How many good candidates have skipped a posting because it was hilariously written by someone who obviously had no idea what the job was all about? Acronyms with the letters switched around. Certification requirements from institutions that don???t even issue the cert mentioned. Always make sure the posting is correct, specific, and professional. Hiring people get what they inspire in the candidate.

tony.mccormick
tony.mccormick

I've got 28 years of computing experience, 15 years as a SQL developer and DBA, I've run over 200 staff but I have to compete with upstarts with 3-4 years of experience. How can I fit my experience into 2 pages? It's a parlous state when recruiters aren't willing to read to earn the huge amounts they earn, to do so little. I've not yet met a hiring manage who totally understood the role they were trying to fill. My experience puts hiring managers in the same class as mobile phone and used car salesmen with morals slightly less decent than those of a prostitute. Old Macka

ernestm
ernestm

I am a hiring manager and I am sick of resumes that are too brief - that do not sufficiently cover what you've done in your (especially most recent) positions. You can list "Java" in some skills list but if I don't see detailed work activity to back that up I'm not going to call you (a headhunter probably would, but...) Do: pare down older positions, I'm probably not hiring on the basis of older tech skills. Don't: eliminate them entirely or leave "blank spots". Older domain experience is entirely relevant. Don't omit education just because it's old either. Do: Sum up your most relevant skills/experience in the first half page to make it clear to me how you're relevant to this job. Don't: then omit a chronological work history that fully explains your positions and all their duties for at least the last three years. Don't: Put technologies or buzzwords on a resume that you won't know what they are when I ask you about them. That's an automatic disqualification. When I post a job I'll get 100 resumes. Most of them (90%) are clearly crap. The 10% that are relevant do get a complete read - first a full scan and then, assuming formatting, organization, typos, etc. didn't turn me off, a complete read. When hiring someone for my team, I take it very seriously as the right person can make or break an organization, and I suspect other real hiring managers out there do too. I don't phone screen on a lark, I want clear evidence from the resume that there's value in talking to you. For the same reason I don't let HR pre-screen my resumes; I'm not sure what the added value is supposed to be other than not taking my time to glance at the other 90 resumes, but IMO it takes more time to manage the process than to do it myself, and then I know I've interviewed the right people...

Tech D
Tech D

Very true and something I didn't know is the your emotional tone of the resume, hmm I have to think that resume writing and interviews can be judged based on the hiring managers personality style. You may be a excellent resume writer I mean a 10 but you turn off the manager who is reading it because he doesn't believe your skills. How do you cater to every manager one resume fits all, or a variety of resumes for a variety of critics? Good 101 in resume do not do lists!

engrbraun
engrbraun

I have come accross resumes that have passport pictures attached to it. Does this improve the chances of the applicant? And why are we not called in for what we can do and not the paper itself

apotheon
apotheon

"[i]An overstatement of technical skills[/i]" With more and more job postings in the IT industry requiring experience in a given technology longer than the period in which the technology has existed, consummate expertise in no less than a dozen programming languages, certification rosters so long that you couldn't have done anything but work on certifications for the last decade, and similarly unrealistic "requirements", sometimes it takes an overstatement of technical skills just to get past HR. I'm not saying anyone should overstate technical skills -- I'm just saying that, if your job postings look like that, you may be guaranteeing that people who overstate technical skills are the only people whose resumes you ever see. "[i]a bunch of keywords that appear to exist only to be keywords[/i]" If your organization uses recruiters, you'll almost never see resumes come your way that [b]don't[/b] include lists of keywords for no reason other than to fulfill a keyword requirement. That's how (almost all?) recruiters do business: scanning for keywords. "[i]If you can?t tell from the resume alone if the owner is enthusiastic about (some aspects of) his previous job experiences, the resume is out.[/i]" I love that attitude toward hiring. More companies should adopt it. Unfortunately, with the necessity of keeping resumes relatively short (a page or two) coupled with the attempt to fulfill job posting requirements, all while keeping the font readable, there may not be much room for enthusiasm on the resume. It's also worth noting that, after spending days fine-tuning a resume, it can be difficult to summon enthusiasm for [b]anything[/b]. Maybe the enthusiasm requirement should be reserved for the interview -- and just treat enthusiasm in the resume as a bonus. "[i]Not highlighting actual results delivered[/i]" You're just begging for buzzword-hash with that one. Sorry, but it's true. (edit: unnecessary hyphen)

awk
awk

When you have a longer career and/or life of contracting. Mine is 5 pages. And that is paraphrased. Care to give me a format or secret that I can put 24+ years of experence (14 different jobs) into one page that fits all?

Prefbid II
Prefbid II

I think you hit the really big problems with resumes. I also think that those same problems are listed on virtually every article or book on effective resume writing. However, I don't think that those sufficiently describe the reasons why resumes don't get very far. How about extending the list to some other problems: 1. Job titles that are non-descript. Just what is a Business Analyst III or a Senior Lead Technical Software Technician? Just because HR says that was your job title, does not mean that should be the name you present to the world. 2. Resumes that have a job history that goes back the dawn of creation. Technical positions only need 10 years. Management positions may need 15 years. 3. Unexplained acronyms. If it is not a "common" acronym, then don't use it. Also, spelling out an acronym is not much better. You really need to explain it without the jargon. 4. Long strings of adjectives. If you are looking for a tech-writer position, have at it, but the rest of us can't read that mumbo-jumbo. 5. Job histories that "look" like you can't keep a job. If you are a self employed consultant -- don't list every encounter as a different job. Your job was being a consultant, some of your successes are the encounters.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

They can't ask your age any more, so length of time in employments and number of years exprience, both indicate a minimum age for your now undiscriminated against self. No gap.... Post it back to same f'kers and I bet you get a call or two....

apotheon
apotheon

Larger corporate agencies are more likely to have arbitrary rules that will end up disqualifying you if you don't fit into the fat part of the bell curve. Seek out the smaller agencies that aren't public corporations; they're more likely to make exceptions, because they're less likely to suffer under the kind of bureaucratic overhead that prohibits a personal touch.

KSoniat
KSoniat

After a 13 year career I stayed at home with the kids for 8 years! Granted many people would not speak to me, and many recruiters would not present me, but I still had good references and found a really good position. I just had my 9 month anniversary. Don't let them get you down - you must sell yourself!! Good Luck!

raycamara
raycamara

Perfectomundo! I couldn't have said it better. When it comes to experience and relating to this it is perfect. Why don't we see more of this in Tech Republic? The recruiters, the Hiring Managers aren't getting the best people because they are looking at this all wrong. Too much crap from companies wanting a piece of the action. And now a recruiter wants a detailed resume instead of a summary, so back to the books for me.

Ironspider
Ironspider

For job hunting in the US: Two pages is ideal for catching attention and giving a detailed explanation of your recent 1-3 positions and skills. If you really must record everything you've ever done, create a CV and add a note at the bottom of the resume that a CV can be provide if requested.

Ironspider
Ironspider

I can't speak for other countries, but in the US, 99% of the time, the resume will be thrown out immediately. Too many legal issues.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

with an airline. They wanted a photo so they didn't interview people with a pink mohican, 666 tattooed on their brow and a large quantity of steel embedded in their face. He was OK on this, his hair was blue. :p

Locrian_Lyric
Locrian_Lyric

That the kind of buzzword BS you're thinking of?

G_Writer
G_Writer

As someone who has been both a manager and a managee (and sometimes both... ), my experience is that you have about 15 seconds to persuade your audience that your resume is worth spending the 5+ minutes it will take to read/consider it properly. So, if nowhere else, make sure that the front section of your resume has enough "meat" relevant to the posted position to ensure further reading. BTW: Don't assume that the cover letter remained attached! Second, this is the digital age. Consider joining LinkedIn or a similar business resource/networking group and publishing your complete bio/resume there. If you've been a consultant, you should have your own domain; make a number of CVs/Bios/Resumes available there as PDFs, then include a reference to the index/contents page for that collection in your resume. If you are a programmer or a graphics geek, do a version of your resume as a sample of your abilities, and include a discussion of why you made the choices you did in creating the sample. (Just don't make the Flash/C#/COBOL/whatever version your *only* resume! ) Grant Hogarth (http://www.linkedin.com/in/granth )

Ozzylogic
Ozzylogic

I second that...how do I squeeze in everything into 2 pages? It's 2 pages now...I still have SO many jobs to hop @/from!

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

Three maximum though, hiring managers get bored stood at the printer. The older the job the less description is the way I do it. My first job wasn't even in IT as such that's a one liner showing I was employed. 9 jobs in 26 years for me.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

I also have an extensive work history, I place the three/maybe four most recent jobs in a common format, describing skills and mroe importantly individual accomplishments at each position. To list the rest, do just that. Add a page with education and :Other "past experiences", in bullet form. ie. 1985 - Broadman's Boats (Administrator) 1994 - Clown's cookies (sales manager) 1997 - Bridge's spans(technical sales engineer) Now you aren't stuck leaving out work experience that may be relevant. Another trick if you have time is to reprint your resume with relevant experiences in your list in bold. It helps when it is scanned, in fact the faster it is read the more it stands out. When you get the interview, you can refer to that section again when describing relevant past experience.

fractalzoom
fractalzoom

Awk says "Care to give me a format or secret that I can put 24+ years of experence (14 different jobs) into one page that fits all?" I think the point is that you needn't list all your jobs! A resume is not an autobiography. It's more like a baited hook. The purpose of a resume is to get an interview, not to tell your life story. Any work experience beyond about ten years is less pertinent...it can either be summarized without the same level of description, or dispensed with entirely. The focus should be on your accomplishments in the last 5 to 10 years, and each of those accomplishments should briefly state what you did, how you did it, and what the benefit to the company was, using a quantifiable measurement. For example: "Instituted Exchange email mailbox size limits, shepherding and training users to better manage their email, reducing mail server data 67%." Obviously, you can't cover a 24-year career in level of detail, but that's not the point of a resume anyway. Again, a resume's only purpose is to land you an interview! Cheers, -Michael

serrin
serrin

awk, You should not need 24+ years of detailed experience on a resume. It should suffice to say you have 24+ years of experience and detail what you've been doing for the past 5 to 10 years. Considering the field we are discussing, anything older than 5 years isn't always relevant. Give it to them at the interview, noone will read your 5 page resume'.

skicat
skicat

I have passed the two page mark years ago. I have been in the IT field for 12+ years and before that it was sales/marketing. I leave the later off because of relevance, but being in IT, there is always something going on. I work in a small shop so I do just about everything and if I only pointed out the successful projects to date, I cover a solid half page. I have consolidated all of my consulting/contract work for space and I am still struggling to keep the resume under 4 pages at 9 point font. 2 page resumes only exist for those with little work experience to date.

GoodOh
GoodOh

This isn't a personal response but is for everyone who has a lot of life and career experience. The secret is that unless it was 'super' exciting no-one cares about someone's 7th last job. Group the old ones (more than 10 years - or even 5 years) into 'Career growth and advancement in a number of companies and experiences. I would be happy to discuss any of these details further.' And list the most recent handful of jobs. You are selling yourself as a valuable employee now and next year, not writing your memoirs. The great achievement 2 years out of school with ACME Corp can go in the list of achievements instead of the list of 'scalps'. And only list an achievement it if it says something that still impresses. 'I topped my cadre in machine coding.' is irrelevant to most companies today and may go against you as 'out of touch' in even raising it.

JamesRL
JamesRL

I have 22 years experience, and almost as many jobs. But in all likelyhood I am not looking to hire you for the skills you used 24 years ago. You don't have to list 24 years experience, but you can refer to it. Personally, I like to see the last 10 years or if you changed careers since then, the jobs since you changed. I would not be sending out 5 page resumes, unless you are applying for a scientific research position (where they like to see what you have published). Two pages is pretty standard. James

TheGooch1
TheGooch1

Just some of my thoughts ( though I keep getting home too late at night to work on my resume these days ) 1) I was told about internal job openings from an person who is doing the interviewing. But to find them in order to request an internal transfer to them, I had to wade through 30 non-specific job descriptions. I had to match the job to the requester, as the description had very little to do with the actual job. 2) I put experience last or next to last, even though I've got 20 years of professional experience ( more if you count school/home before then ). Why? They want to know first what you can for them when you walk in the door. Who cares what you did for the last company unless it applies directly to what they will be asking you to do. 3) Agreed. 4) Agreed. 5) I am unsure on this one. I change employers every 3-4 years because I have yet to find a company that lets me move to a position I like after I get bored with the initial one. They always have some excuse, but it usually boils down to "we need you here." So then I leave. Oh, getting a decent raise is also a motivation to leave :) Good luck with your job searches!

apotheon
apotheon

Thanks for providing such a relevant and well-constructed example.

Locrian_Lyric
Locrian_Lyric

I don't think you need to list DOS (for example)any longer, unless you are dealing with some truly archaic systems.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

26 years on three pages, 9 jobs. Catch the eye in each one. Pick out the one or two highest value achievements. Then a wee line underneath with what technical skills I used during it. Target, if the employer wants a programmer, the time you were an admin as well is an aside. Don't use your resume to make the interview unnecessary.

fractalzoom
fractalzoom

Not true! I have 22 years of IT work experience, and my resume fits neatly into 2 pages. The thing is, it's not necessary to list all of your experience in a resume. As I mentioned in another post on this thread, the point of a resume is to get you an interview - that's it. A resume is not an autobiography. What you *can* do with a wealth of history is prepare a bunch of accomplishment bullets pulled from your various successes over the years, and then cherry-pick from those to customize the resume you send for a particular job listing. I categorize mine - "Management focus", "Engineering focus", "Project Management focus", and pull from them as needed. Each bullet is 2 lines or less, stating what I did, how I did it, and ending with a measurement of the benefit. For example, "Consolidated file servers, decommissioning superfluous systems, reducing support and licensing costs by 20%." I'll say it again: The purpose of a resume is to get you an interview. It needn't tell your whole story!

JamesRL
JamesRL

See it isn't the writer of resumes you need to satisfy, its the reader. And hiring managers, HR people, recruiters etc get hundreds of resumes, and not a great amount of time to read each one. I have heard speeches from recruiters who basically stop reading after the second page. I attended a seminar from a guy who has been doing resumes for others for 20 years. He has done resumes for some very famous people. He says for most positions 2 pages is the norm. Some roles like doctors/professors and other "professionals" demand a complete and thorough history. He's pretty specific - 2 pages is the norm, anything else is an exception. You can check out his website and his sample resumes at www.aneliteresume.com. He does offer free advice. James

awk
awk

Do you have a suggested format... or something else in mind. The 5 pages is all relevant to my current career. Which does show some gaps (unrelated to resume presented). The format I have for the 5 pages comes from an older format used... you guessed it, over 20 years ago. I am sure anyone would love to hear what to expect in a 2 page resume.

Ironspider
Ironspider

Headhunters talk directly to the staff and hiring managers almost exclusively bypassing HR.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

But at most places the technical types won't see a cv until several non tech types have 'understood' it. In the UK that would be the recruitment consultant (pimp) at least, sometimes HR as well. Very hard to target if you don't know your audience. You might see that this guy did two years with MySQL and we are considering a move, whereas the HR type thinks he can't spell.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

As successful modernisation to avoid Y2k, reduce costs, improve availability, simplify future development that had to minimise disruption to ongoing business. Skills used :- a very long list. That was a replacement of a VMS based process control system, hardware and software with a PC and PLC based approach, which I was heavily involved in. Discussion of how, well give me an interview. :D

schmidtd
schmidtd

On a resume, I am typically looking for experience and skills, stuff like that I perfer in an interview. Examples like "I saved x dollars" would more often than not turn me off in a resume. Saving money, for example, can be a very tricky concept and very liable exaggeration. The same with many "accompishments". Better to bring it up in the interview (I specifically ask for that stuff there) where I can go into depth about what they really did! Anyone see the simpson's episode where Homer realized he only had to hit "y" rather than type "yes"? "Marge, I just tripled my productivity!"

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

You're right, so many people think a job description on a resume is effective. In actuality YOUR specific job accomplishments are FAR more valuable and they will actually keep the reader interested. Everyone knows the skillset and general duties of the average network admin, but if you list experiences and accomplishments, you will get the reader to pay keen attention, perhaps enough that he doesn't have time to properly read the other resumes.

Locrian_Lyric
Locrian_Lyric

I don't write that way, but some hiring managers do seem to want to see that nonsense. I understand your point, but some of the stuff we, as IT workers do is more 'value added' and somewhat difficult to quantify. Example: I was at a job where we changed damn near everything, and created a front end that had to work both with the old back end and the new one. The business processes changed entirely, the systems changed entirely, end users had to have the software installed and we had to train them, and troubleshoot, all while maintaining the old system. How would you get something like THAT into a resume? I'm not looking now, I'm VeRY happy where I am, but I am curious yourself.

JamesRL
JamesRL

When I see wording like that in a resume, I tend to think its lipstick on a pig - trying to cover up a lack of solid experience or achievement with hyperbole. What I want to know is: What did you do for your company, particularly something that went above and beyond. If you initiated a project that saved a million - tell me that. If you didn't initiate it, but only worked on it - don't try to take credit for it. I like numbers - migrated xxxx users, saved yyyy dollars etc. If I actually got to interview someone who had that kind of hyperbole in their resume, you can bet I'd be asking them how. James

Tik-Tok
Tik-Tok

Not an autobiography. Save something for the interview.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

My resume is 2 pages, + two pages of additional skills (software abilities, education etc.), past experiences (brief one-line comments). Results, if I send out 5 resumes, I will get an average of 2-3 call backs, resulting in qualified interviews. I have been teaching skills like resume writing and job hunting (properly, not just online postings) since 1985, have yet to see a better format yet. BUT, the main body and work experience is definitely only 2 pages. I also have long work assessment reports and specific work achievements by company if requested, up to 13 pages if they wish. I use a couple of tricks to help it stand out, beside each job desciption is a ful colour company logo ( about 1"W X ?) in the margin with the dates). This is not copyright or trademark infringement in ANY sense of the word. I am not claiming to represent them or thier services but simply that I have worked for them. Short or long, if prepared properly, a resume can and will hold attention. I remember getting resumes that were full of qualifications but you would read the first page due to hideous formatting. You can make a resume something they will pass around and comment on, or you can disappear into the pile. Wiht you knowing me, I must admit a spell check is always imperative. :)

richard.ctr.holloway
richard.ctr.holloway

I don't have a simple answer to what is a good resume, but do know what is a bad one for me. I have hired over twenty people in the last year. In doing that I have looked at hundreds of resumes. If the resume is not easy to read, doesn't contain information about experience as identified in the Job List, I won't read much past the first page. I will move on the next resume. I don't have time to read through four pages of resume to find some experience that relates to the job. I need to know up front (first page) what skills, knowledge and experience you have that is relevant to the position I listed. If I see that I will read on if not I move to the next resume.

LocoLobo
LocoLobo

mine is a 2 pager, but could use some polish. The resumes there look good. I'm not looking right now so it has been 3-4 yrs since my resume has been updated.

mark2631
mark2631

I've tried this - for a guy with 7 years experience, it's ok....but not for us "seasoned" professionals (read that: old guys).

Tig2
Tig2

You CAN credibly truncate to 10 years and group- if you were a contractor over that period, group those contracts together with callouts of successes that are quantifiable. I use a three page format but only send page one- it carries bulleted specifics, technical experience, and education/certs with a note that the chron is available on request. If I get a request, I know that they want to see the chron and send it. So far, it works.

Prefbid II
Prefbid II

A suggestion Brownie Mix Consulting, Principle & Owner, 1990 - present + Consulting practice specializing in Cisco networks, router configurations and .... + Retained by 12 small and 2 medium sized companies to ... + Key accomplishments - Contracted to head team of 12 in installing 400 station network in a tight deadline of ... - Created ... - Built ... List of clients + RJ Bodyshop + Hydroelectric Inc + ...