How to Pass The 6 Second Resume Readability Test

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You only have 6 seconds to grab someone’s attention and convince them that you’re the right candidate for the job of your dreams. How’s that for pressure?

If you really, really, really want the job, you’ll need to put your best foot forward even before you get your foot in the door. That means you need a killer resume, customized to the job you’re trying to land. You’ll also need to pass the 6 second resume readability test. Here’s how:

Make it easy to read: Whether you’re creating a paper or digital document, it should have a simple format. Use concise language, bold font for headings, bulleted lists and white space. Include your name and contact info right up front. Add a hyperlink or URL that connects to your LinkedIn profile. If it’s paper, keep it to one page. If you’re submitting online, you can go to two, but only if what you include is relevant. And make sure to take measures to beat the applicant tracking systems many companies use.

Include relevant keywords. The best way to make certain your resume matches what the hiring manager is looking for is to include keywords directly from the job posting on your resume. For example, if you’re looking for a job as a medical assistant, the job posting might ask that applicants have experience taking medical histories or working with Electronic Medical Records. Give examples of both under the responsibilities you’ve had. If it’s an IT position, they might ask that you have specific certifications; make sure to include yours on your resume!

Hit the data points. Recruiters spend almost 80 percent of their resume time on just six points:

·         Name

·         Current Title/Company

·         Previous Title/Company

·         Previous Positions

·         Start/End Dates

·         Education

Choose great vocabulary. It’s not just what you say; it’s also how you say it on your resume. You can manage a project, keeping everything moving along. But isn’t it better if you lead it? It’s also great to talk about achievements and accomplishments, but be specific. What did you do? How did you do it? And what incredible results were you able to produce?

Make no errors. One of the quickest ways to get your resume out of the running for a job is to make careless mistakes in spelling and grammar. Typos reflect inattention to detail and an uncaring attitude. That’s not the message you want to send to your future employer. Is it?

At Charter College, we want you to succeed in the classroom and on your job. That’s why we spend so much time helping you prepare your professional portfolio. Our Career Services Department will help you become a better job candidate. Find out more now by filling out the form.