Originally posted on Quora, one user asked:
There you are, late one evening, rushing to update your resume so you can respond to a hot job opportunity. But the moment your fingers touch the keyboard, your brain serves up the question that bedevils every job seeker:
Should your resume be one page or two?
How employers share job openings and how candidates apply for jobs is increasingly out of step with how humans actually process information. Think about it. In our tablet and smartphone world, could there be a worse way to hire than the hidebound ritual of:
For most people, job hunting is uncomfortable, unfamiliar, and haphazard. It's really common for people to accept a mediocre job offer simply because they couldn't bear the thought of one more day of job hunting.
The CEO put down the resume of a potential chief operating officer candidate and said, "This guy has worked for some of the top organizations in our field, but I don’t think he’s ready for this job." She explained, "I see he launched new initiatives, but he did not indicate what the impact was … was it $10,000 or $5 million?" In his resume, the COO candidate had mostly listed his responsibilities, but not the impact of his accomplishments. It was easy to see that his experience was relevant, but without knowing the scale of his accomplishments, it was impossible to see the significance of what he had achieved. So he was passed over for other candidates who demonstrated tangible achievements on their resumes.
If you already have a job, but know it’s time for a change, what’s the first thing you do? Update your resume?
One of the biggest sources of job seeker frustration is sending resumes out and then hearing nothing back. It feels pointless and futile — because for most people, it is pointless and futile. If you don’t have the kinds of skills that employers are desperate to hire, then your resume will not be much help to you, and your job search might take a while.
Most resumes are a thicket of deadwood words and phrases: empty cliches, annoying jargon, and recycled buzzwords. And the people who read your resume (Recruiters, HR folks, and hiring managers) see these terms over and over again. If you have ever spent an hour reading other people's resumes, you know just how tedious it can be.
We spend so much time formatting our resumes so font is clear, the bullets line up and the size is just perfect. And then, we submit our resume online or upload it to a database that takes out all of the formatting! Even worse, they often put weird symbols in the place of our beautiful bullets or accented words - so when recruiters go to read them, they look awful. Barbara Safani at glassdoor.com blog has a few tips for how to make text-only documents that will look proper when pasted into text boxes on websites or uploaded to applicant tracking systems. Here are a couple tips: