You’re looking for a job in the IT field, and that’s a good thing. But a lot of other people are doing the same, so that’s a bad thing. There’s too much competition out there. That’s why you need a solid resume to make you stand out from the pack. Even in this age of the Internet, with sites like LinkedIn being so popular, you still have to create a good resume that sums you up, especially when you consider that a lot of sites want you to cut and paste your resume online in the first place!
Problem is, if you ask 20 different people for the best way to create an outstanding resume, odds are you will get 20 different answers. Fortunately, there are some common rules that transcend the crowd of subjective opinions, and that’s what’s going to be dealt with right here.
Remember Why Companies Hire People
Companies don’t hire people out of the goodness of their collective hearts. They hire people because they have a particular problem that needs solving, and they are looking for the one person who they believe has the answers they need.
That’s why, even though the resume describes you, it’s “not about you”. Does that sound confusing? In other words, the resume should be presented in a way that shows that you recognize that a company has a need or problem, and that you’re qualified to be that solution. So avoid referring to yourself too much.
On a related note …
Avoid Extraneous Garbage
In an effort to show that you are a well-rounded person, you happen to mention in your resume that you enjoy long-distance running, amateur dog-grooming, and Morris dancing. After, everyone likes knowing that you have a multitude of interests and talents, a sort of Renaissance man or woman, right?
Wrong. Companies could care less about your Morris dancing. As far as they are concerned, if the right candidate is a socially reclusive nerd with formidable tech skills capable of solving every IT problem in existence, then that’s the person they’ll go for, not the clueless individual who somehow thinks that shaving poodles or waving handkerchiefs somehow makes them qualified.
Unless the position you’re shooting for specifically asks for people with a wide variety of skills and talents, then avoid making your resume look like a dating profile.
On the other side of the coin, make sure you emphasize your work history, overall experience, accomplishments within the field that you’re looking for a job in, and appropriate education. By the same token, leave off irrelevant work histories such as that time you worked as a cashier at Target for eight months, or that ill-fated stint as a barista. You’re looking for an IT job, so keep your information focused within that field, deviating only if where you’re going has at least a minimal connection to IT.
Again, there is no one way to write up a resume. But by showing that you are the answer to a company’s problems and yet not coming across as an egotist, you stand a very good chance of standing out.