07 Nov Crazy resumes & catching a recruiter’s eye
One of the perks of being in recruitment is being able to peek through windows into the stories of a lot of people via their resume. Quite often it tells us more than just a chronology of their employment. We learn about what gets them up in the morning, their motivations, passions and interests (beyond the “Interests & Hobbies” title on some resumes).
I get asked all the time about “crazy” things we see on resumes. That’s tougher to answer than you may think. What comes to mind when I think of a crazy resume are the cool jobs: the interesting ones that may have involved international chapters within a career. Crazy in only the best sense.
I’ve been lucky enough to receive some standout resumes and had very interesting conversations. One with a woman who ran Marketing for a successful chain of high-end restaurants in Iran whilst her husband was on secondment with a large financial firm. The other, with a woman who worked for NATO in Afghanistan. Someone who worked administration in a prison. An EA to a very public and high-profile federal Government position. A video producer who has worked for Sesame Street. This is what I would call a crazy resume. It screams success, carries interest and gives great insight into a candidate’s character.
So, how can you turn your story into a standout crazy resume submission? Here’s a few tips:
(1) Make it for decision-makers
We like seeing interesting stories; they are your achievements. One gets to a point in their career where listed duties are less important, but responsibilities, achievements and successes are critical. I assume that if you have been a Marketing Manager for 10 years that you know how to develop a multi-channel marketing plan. But by how much you have increased engagement or conversations or audience? Tell me about that.
(2) Be critical of the details you include
Does size matter? That depends. A resume needs to be relevant. If you were a Trades Assistant at BHP from 1979-1984, I don’t think that will impact your eligibility for a current job. Other inclusions that rank quite low in my books: RSA (and other certifications that obviously sit outside of your industry), subjects studied in high school or the primary school you attended. If you have four pages of relevance, then that’s OK.
(3) Keep it clean
I like a resume with smart, sharp, clear formatting. No spelling mistakes. Adzuna surveyed 50,000 resumes and more than 61 per cent had spelling mistakes, despite the red squiggly line. A resume needs to look clean and consistent. A modern font like Calibri makes sense, but here’s a few good tips on the best fonts for your resume.
(4) Stupid, simple
Leave your photos on Facebook. We’ll see them there anyways. Unless you are applying for a role at General Pants, you don’t need to include your photo on the front page. If we like the look of your resume, we know how to use Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram to put a face to the name. And believe me, we do. So, keep that in-check. If we see you doing something interesting and loose (which I’m guilty of doing, but keep my privacy settings tight), our whole office will see you keg-stand/vomit/pole-dance.
Graphic Designers and fellow creative professionals, you are allowed to show us what you can do with a resume. But you are pretty much the only exception. And include snapshots of a portfolio or a link to one.
The goal of a resume isn’t to get you a job; it’s to get you an interview. A first impression. An introduction. Make it easy for us to want to call you. Tell me the first chapter of your story. And I certainly don’t mind if it’s a little crazy.
For more tips on landing the job of your dreams, reach out to our Recruitment Specialists or phone 02 4967 5236.