Trans4mind Home Page
~ A Journey of Self-Discovery ~

Explore Article Library


Does Your Resume Have What It Takes To Survive The First Cut

DOES YOUR RESUME HAVE WHAT IT TAKES TO
SURVIVE THE FIRST CUT?

By Ruth Anderson
VANTAGE POINT Coaching & Consulting

To be a success, your resume must have sufficient "scan appeal" to pass a first cut 'that initial stage when a busy employer, faced with a stack of resumes, scans each one for about 30 to 60 seconds and rejects most. What can you do to make sure that your resume survives the first cut?

For answers, consider the following analysis of a typical 30-second scan. Then learn how to evaluate your own resume for scan appeal.

The first 5 seconds'

Resume writers spend most of their time thinking about wording. Yet, it is the immediate visual impact of your resume that first influences how the employer feels about hiring you.

Without consciously thinking about it, your reader "decides" within seconds whether your resume is visually pleasing. Consider your own resume from the 5-second perspective' Is there a good balance of text and white space? Is the resume monotonous, or does it use a pleasing variety of visual elements (heading sizes, bold, italic, bullets, etc.)?

Your reader also develops an immediate feel for whether your resume will be easy to read. Make sure that your resume invites the reader to scan by using a clear and consistent format, and by highlighting key points in bulleted lists. Important information should never be presented in long, dense paragraphs.

The next 10 seconds'

After taking in your resume's visual qualities, the employer's eye focuses on the top half of the first page. He or she will be trying to get a quick overview of who you are and what you can do. Much like the computers at employment web sites, the employer will scan quickly for information that suggests you are a good match for the job at hand.

To take full advantage of these 10 seconds, most resumes should start with a headline and a summary section. The headline (typically stating an "objective") declares in one or two lines the essence of who you are and what you are seeking.

The summary section (often titled " Summary of Qualifications" or "Personal Profile") uses bullets and succinct wording to highlight what is likely to most intrigue the employer. Before writing this section, make a list of the 5 to 10 criteria that are most likely to guide the employer's choice 'then summarize your qualifications in a way that speaks directly to the employer's interests.

The last 15 seconds'

If your resume is visually pleasing and starts with an effective summary, your reader will naturally want to scan the rest of it. At this point, the employer will look for: confirmation that you meet the job's requirements, supporting evidence for your summary section, and any intriguing details that add to the picture of what you would be like to work with.

Your job is to consider where the reader's eye is most likely to be drawn, and use these places to your advantage. They include: section headings, subheadings, the first sentence or two immediately under headings, position titles, bulleted lists (especially the top one or two items), words in bold, words in italic, and numerals (i.e. numbers that are not spelled out).

Consider all of these to be tools at your disposal when creating scan appeal. Is there an accomplishment, for example, that you want to highlight? Try putting it at the top of a bulleted list and including one or two numerals (such as "reduced costs by 10%" or "supervised a staff of 12"). If appropriate, use some bold or italic either within the item or in the wording that introduces it.

Testing for Scan Appeal

Your resume should be tested for scan appeal before any copies go out. You must be able to answer two questions' Given just 30 seconds to convince the employer to consider you, what must you bring to his or her attention? And, what does your resume actually convey in a 30-second scan?

To conduct a preliminary test yourself, review your employment strategy 'i.e. list the top five things you think are most important for the employer to know about you. Then look at the parts of your resume most likely to be seen in a scan, and make sure each item has been highlighted in some way.

For an even more telling test, give your resume to several people who don't know you well, and time them as they scan it for 30 seconds. When they are done, have them set the resume aside and jot down everything they remember.

Would the information they noticed and remembered provide compelling reasons for the employer to hire you? If the answer is yes, your resume has excellent scan appeal.

- 2005 Ruth Anderson

About the Author
About the author:

Ruth Anderson is the owner of Vantage Point Coaching & Consulting and author of WRITE RESUMES WITH CONFIDENCE: How to Create Outstanding Resumes and Have the Confidence to Use Them with Success. Learn more about her products and services, including the unique INTRODUCTION TO COACHING and JOB SEARCH TUNE-UP programs, at http://www.vantagepointcoaching.com or write mailto:ruth@vantagepointcoaching.com.


AND EXPLORE...

Addictions
Astrology
Careers & Employment
Communication
Creativity
Dating
Depression
Diabetes
Diets
Divorce
Education
Environment
Ethics
Exercise
Family
Goal-Setting
Grief & Loss
Happiness
Health
Kids & Teens
Leadership
Love
Marriage
Meditation
Nutrition
Organizing
Parenting
Psychology
Public Speaking
Relationships
Schools
Self Help
Self Improvement & Motivation
Sexual Relations
Spirituality
Stress Management
Travel and Leisure
Women
Writing


From our extensive site, you'll find good info on many topics using this search:

Want to renew your life?

Our online, interactive video workshops present the most effective methods of holistic personal development...
Start off with a Free Life Assessment and a Free Consultation...
 

Have a question about Trans4mind Training?

Frequently Asked Questions
What Are Our Fees?
Email Peter Shepherd

Support your personal development with these popular and effective hypnosis downloads...

  • Public Speaking Fear ~ Banish speaking anxiety and nerves with hypnosis.
  • Motivate Yourself to Exercise ~ Build a powerful exercise habit that you can't break.
  • Get Rid of Fear & Anxiety ~ Stop worry and apprehension wrecking your life.
  • Self Esteem ~ Break the negative trance of low self esteem and give yourself a chance in life.
  • Create Your Own Reality ~ Use the power of your unconscious mind to transform your life.
  • Deeper Self Respect ~ Use hypnosis to connect with your true inner worth.
  • Detach From Fear ~ Tune out nervousness and anxiety with hypnosis.
  • Improving Concentration and Focus ~ Learn how to discipline, direct and command your mind to improve your performance.
  • Exercise Motivation ~ Give you powerful keys to getting back on track with your exercise - and staying there.
  • Overcoming Shyness ~ Provides an invisible security blanket allowing you to develop social ease and overcome shyness.
  • Quick Confidence Booster ~ An audio hypnosis session that's specifically designed to get you (quickly!) back on track.
  • Stop Negative Thoughts ~ Learn powerful hypnotic techniques to stop negative thoughts before they start.
  • Overcoming Procrastination ~ Let hypnosis help you get on with what you need to do, when you need to do it. Let nothing hold you back.
  • Think Thin ~ Use hypnosis to re-train your brain and lose weight naturally... that's how to get and stay slim.
  • Fall Asleep Fast ~ Relearn how to fall asleep fast and enjoy a good night's sleep.
  • The Next Level ~ Designed to radically boost your performance in any field. It's based on a technique used by top athletes and other successful people to help them make a big stride forward.
This is our selection of favorites, but there's a session for every need! Choose from over 800 Hypnosis Downloads...
Search now on an issue that interests or concerns you...
 

Welcome to the New Wave in Meditation Technology

Click here to learn more about the iAwake Profound Meditation Program
The iAwake Profound Meditation Program
is a way of enhancing your meditation practice, making meditation not only easier and more enjoyable, but also more efficient and effective.
Profound Meditation provides the smoothest, deepest, richest, most profound meditation experience available anywhere...
Here is a link to a free 20-minute track from iAwake Technologies - a sample of the type of tools that will deepen your meditation immediately and help you quickly become a successful meditator. It's the opening track of iAwake's flagship product, the Profound Meditation Program, called the iAwake Experience...
Learn More and Download the iAwake Experience
We think you'll find this technology a tremendous aid on your transformative journey of becoming your best and most creative self - and you can get started today!
And here's a fantastic resource for self-education...

The World of Inspiration eLibrary

World of Inspiration
A treasure trove of personal development wisdom

Step inside. Just like a real library, there are thousands of quality eBooks presented on three "floors" and in different "rooms." To purchase your $15 Lifetime Membership to the World of Inspiration eLibrary, click the following button:

Payment is made through our secure transaction agent, PayPal.
The transaction is in the language and currency of your choice.
"I want to just say 'WOW!' This collection is probably the best money I ever spent! I've already received many times over in personal enrichment after just 9 days. I've had a past metaphysical background, but even newcomers to this material will really benefit. Thanks again." ~ J.S. (Pennsylvania, USA)
"The collection is everything which you promised. And more! A superb contribution to the good of the world. Many thanks indeed." ~ R.P. (Georgia, USA)
"Just a short note of thanks for the library. I've only had membership for several days now but I already feel this is perhaps the most interesting compilation I have yet seen. Worth far more than the price of admission. The browser linked structure works well and makes it easy to manage such a large storehouse of information. It is rarely that I find something I like as much as this or that I feel strongly enough to write a note like this." ~ P.W. (Minnesota, USA)
Copyright © 1997-2016 Trans4mind Ltd