How Important is Your Resume Format? [VIDEO]

What do the best resumes have in common?
Kathryn Burke

Kathryn Burke

Video Transcript:

Hi, my name is Kathryn Burke, and I’m coming to you from Resumes For Results in Australia. I hope you’ve had a lovely day. It’s been beautiful up here on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland. Beautiful weather. Sunny, warm, perfect!

Today I want to talk to you about your job applications. I get feedback from many, many clients who say they have applied for hundreds and hundreds of jobs and they’re not getting offered any interviews. And a lot of them say they’re not even getting any sort of acknowledgement that their application has been received.

Did you know that 75% of resumes do not actually make it to a real person? 

This is when you’re applying online through an online portal, Seek, Indeed, or a company website. That’s staggering! 75% do not make it to a real person, the recruiter or the employer. Your resume format could be the reason. Not that you don’t have the experience, but there may be something in your resume that is stopping it getting through.

So today, I want to give you three very simple tips that can help improve your chances of your resume getting to a real person. 

Tip #1:

The first one is to keep your resume, the layout, the format of it simple, clean, relevant. Only include the relevant information; not what hobby you did when you were 15 or 16, for example. So, keep it simple, clean and relevant.

Tip #2:

The next one is keywords. Now, keywords are those words, often industry jargon, in particular, and other words like team worker, customer service, for example. There are lots of keywords. Now, those keywords are found in the job application or the role description or the online ad on Seek or through a company website. It’s really important that you use those keywords. Industry jargon is often put in there as a keyword, and you may know what that is or do some research to find out what it is because the applicant-tracking software is looking for those keywords.

Okay! So that’s (1) keep it simple, keep it clean and (2) use keywords.

Tip #3:

The third point is don’t include anything fancy like really fancy fonts, e.g. Lucinda Handwriting, that can’t be read by applicant tracking software or real eyes. For example, it’s very difficult to read fancy fonts. So don’t use them.

Don’t use graphical elements, photos, fancy things, lots of columns, or lots of tables. The applicant tracking software doesn’t like them.

Okay? We love those cool-looking resumes with all that in it laid out really well and colourful and vibrant and attractive, but the applicant tracking software doesn’t. So keep them for networking events.

Bonus Tip:

Now, that’s the three tips I’ve got for you today, but I have got one bonus tip. And that is grammar and spelling. So the only way to make sure you get all your grammar and spelling errors out of your resume is to proof it. Please proof it and proof it again and then proof it again and then ask your Mum or your sister or your brother or your friend to proof it for you.

It’s very important that your resume doesn’t have any mistakes in it. And also, make sure you’re using an Australian dictionary in your Microsoft Word. But don’t rely on that tool. No spelling and grammar tool is perfect. So you must also proof it, please proof it. There’s nothing worse, from an employer’s perspective, to get a resume that has mistakes in it. They will most likely not want to take it any further, and you won’t get an interview.

There are my three tips plus my bonus tips. I would love to hear back from you after you’ve implemented those in your resume. I’d love to know what happened.

The other thing I want to tell you is that we also offer a free resume review service. Please take us up on that offer. It’s a free service with no obligation to go ahead. You cannot lose out. You will get some really important advice and tips on what you can do to improve your resume in a little bit more detail than what I have said to you today. Please take us up on that offer.

Message us, click on the button at the bottom of your screen, and ask for a free resume review. Thank you for staying with me to the end. I really appreciate that. I hope you have a lovely evening and I hope to see you the next time that I’m one here with a live video.

Thank you. Bye-bye.

If you would like to know more about the author Kathryn Burke, click here.

Do you need help putting together a professional cover letter for your resume? 

Contact our Career Consultants at Résumés for Results TODAY to discuss how we can assist you. You can call us on 1800 155 895 or send us an email to find out more. 

 We also provide and specialise in cover letter writing, interview coaching and job search advice. 

We offer services across Australia, including all capital cities and regional areas. Resume Writers bring years of experience to the table, with a full range of career services available. Résumés for Results are here to assist you to succeed.

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