06/11/2015 by Carney Sandoe Staff |

Resume Do’s and Don’ts

Summer is the perfect time to take stock of the documents in your candidate file and refresh any that need updating.

Person with resume in one hand and pen in the other

Your resume is the most important of all your documents—and often the one that needs the most attention.

Take some time over the next few weeks to review and refresh your documents. And keep these “do's and don’ts” in mind when revamping your resume.

Do…revise your resume to make it fresh and concise.

Take a look at your resume. Is it bloated and dense, spanning two or more pages? Look both to the formatting and to the content, and revamp your resume to make it eye-catching, concise, and to-the-point. A hiring contact should not have to spend several minutes thumbing through a resume packet to decide whether they want to know more about you.

Don’t…worry about going slightly over one page.

Don’t panic if your resume extends slightly past one page. While one page is an ideal length, there’s no need to take that old rule of thumb too literally. If your resume extends onto a few lines on a second page, that’s totally fine.

Do…proofread your resume. Then proofread it again.

There is no excuse for having typos in your resume—the first representation of your work product a school will likely have. Proofread the document, then proofread it again, and then one more time for good measure. Make doubly sure that the names of your past schools are spelled correctly, and check your sentences for proper grammar and spelling.

Don’t…feel the need to replace bullets with full paragraphs.

While your resume should be polished and grammatically correct, it needn’t be overly prosey. Trade dense sentences for quick, attention-grabbing bullet points that clearly detail your accomplishments and your value.

Do…update your resume periodically to reflect new positions and accomplishments.

Some candidates go years without updating their resumes. This does not reflect well, indicating a lack of care about providing accurate and updated information in the job search or, worse, stasis in their role. Make sure you periodically review your resume and update it to include any updates: a new leadership role, for example, or a publication, or a conference at which you presented.

Don’t…try to cram everything you’ve ever done onto the document.

Go easy on the additions. At some point in your career, you will need to begin cutting work experiences and explanations from your resume. Review the document in the aggregate and determine whether the experiences and positions you’ve included add significantly to the overall summary of who you are as an educator.

Do…spend time formatting your resume to make it easy-to-read and attractive.

Your resume should be attractive, eye-catching, and reader-friendly. It should be written in an easily readable font, with consistent spacing and uncrowded margins. Show your resume to a few friends or family members (or your CS&A Placement Associate!) before uploading it to your file or sending it to prospective employers, and ask them if they think it is attractive and visually compelling.

Don’t…weigh style over substance.

In making your resume beautiful, don’t spend too much time on the style at the expense of the substance. If you’ve crafted a resume that reads like an infographic, for example, make sure all the content you need to convey is present.

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