5 Ways To Build A Resume To Land Your Dream Job

For the class of 2019, college graduation is either right around the corner (as in, tomorrow) or it just passed. That means it’s time to enter “the real world” and find a job (for those not going to graduate school). And even though there’s still a ton of talk about the job market being a depressing landscape full of rejection, things are looking up. Employers plan to hire nearly 11% more graduates from the class of 2019 than they did last year, according to the National Association of Colleges and Employers. That means one thing: it’s time to update your resume.

And even if you’re not a soon-to-be graduate, you never know when your dream job will come knocking, and it’s no secret that your resume will likely determine whether or not you land that first interview.

When creating or updating a resume, there’s a lot to consider. You need to capture your recent professional life in 3-4 succinct bullet points, show your value, and of course, master the art of the humble brag. Your resume should demonstrate strengths specific to your role—if you are applying for a creative role, showcase your creativity. If you are applying for a technical role, highlight your experience with data. I’ve reviewed countless resumes throughout my time with Microsoft developing Resume Assistant with LinkedIn, and I always find that the strength of a candidate starts with the strength of their resume.

So, you build a strong resume. Easier said than done, right? It doesn’t have to be. With the right tips and the best tools, you’ll be perfecting your resume faster than your Uber Eats order on a Sunday night.

1. Know What Employers Are Looking For

At the beginning of your job search, read the job posting thoroughly and start to insert language into your resume that reflects the roles that interest you. You can easily find job postings while you’re building your resume by using Resume Assistant in Microsoft Word. Resume Assistant shows you examples of how real people, in the jobs you want, describe their experience and skills. If the descriptions of your experience match the role, you’re more likely to be selected.  

2. Identify What Makes You Stand Out

You’ve found a role you want to apply for. Before you dig into your resume, ask yourself what sets you apart. A common mistake is to approach a job application considering what this job can do for you. When building your resume, it is important to ask yourself, “What can I do for this company?” What is your value, and why should the hiring manager select you? Look back at your recent roles and responsibilities and showcase experiences where you brought your A-game to a task and delivered results. Identifying where you bring value will help you sell yourself.

3. Use Strong Action Verbs

The best resumes use strong action verbs to showcase your previous responsibilities. The easiest way to transform your resume is to update each sentence with verbs that paint a picture for the reader. Did you make a plan, or did you develop it? Did you write a press release, or did you craft it? Word choice matters.

4. Call Out Your Skills

Make sure your resume has a Skills section identifying your strengths, and make sure they match those in the job description. If you’re not sure how to do that, Resume Assistant shows top skills for related roles in your field, according to LinkedIn. Filter work experience examples by your skills to get inspired by how others mention those skills on their public LinkedIn profiles.

5. Be Concise

It’s easy to use more words than needed. Cut filler words to make your talent shine. The easier your resume is to read, the more likely it will be read in full.

Apply these tips next time you revamp your resume, and you’ll be setting yourself up for success. And remember, you never know when the right job opportunity will come along, so best to keep your resume current at all times.

Images: Giphy (5)

6 Things You Should Never Put On Your Resume

Want more honest career advice other than things you should never put on your resume? Pre-order our third book, When’s Happy Hour? out October 23rd!

While you’re climbing up the ladder to boss betchdom, at some point you’ll probably have to apply for a job. Unless you’re planning on pulling an Elle Woods and sharing a borderline pornographic classy bikini pic of yourself to get noticed, you’ll have to create a badass resume. The worst feeling, (yes, worse than finding out Colton is the new Bachelor #teampeter4ever), is applying for a job online, only to get a rejection letter 24 hours later.

Us betches *should* be good at resumes. I mean, we’re really good at bragging talking about our accomplishments, so shouldn’t we be good at putting it all on paper? Not always. If you want to avoid this rejection that vaguely reminds you of all of your middle school years, I got you. I’ve compiled all the things you should never put on your resume. I see a crack in that glass ceiling already.

1. An Objective

As much as you want to f*cking yell your lifelong career goals (a corner office, a Rachel Green approved hot assistant, millions of Instagram followers), adding an objective statement to your resume will not do you any good. It’s not only as outdated as your pink RAZR flip phone (RIP), it also can corner you into a career path completely irrelevant to the job your applying for.

The best thing you can do within your resume is SHOW how your past experience will relate to a future role, specifically the role you are applying to. We’d recommend including numbers, results and specific examples of your past success. That will be the best example of why you should be chosen for a job.

2. Your Age Or GPA

Although you’re obsessively taking collagen and sneaking off to Botox appointments during lunch, your work is one place where you don’t want to seem young. I mean, it’s great—flattering even—if during happy hour the bartender needs to check your ID. But on your resume, you DON’T want someone wondering if their future employee is even legal.

As depressing as this is going to sound to all you college students unless you’re in some sort of academic career, no one gives a sh*t about your grades after college. So you can skip class today and start drinking like you wanted to anyway.

Instead, fill your resume with work experience and something an employer can relate to, not an arbitrary number that could have been given out because you liked to wink at your dreamy TA. At least, that was my strategy for getting good grades.

3. Irrelevant Work Experience

…If I had a penny for every f*cking time someone told me to say “relevant”…I’d literally be Kim K. But we’re not in the Kardashian clan (just obsessively watching them) which means we have to be really good at staying *relevant*, and here’s why.

When a recruiter or hiring manager is reading your resume, you want them to be able to picture you in the role. This means leaving off your high school babysitting jobs (although I’m sure those kids were a ton of work). Keep your resume experience related to whatever job you’re applying to. If you really want to be the overachieving betch I know you are, use buzzwords from the job description online and insert them into your resume. You’ll be so much more relevant (trying not to vom, but it’s TRUE).

If this is your first job or you’re switching industries, no problem. Find times in the experience you do have (like internships, school projects) where you did work most relatable to the job you are applying for. Worst case, show that you can be a proactive leader—capable of having at least some sort of responsibility and not just keeping your Postmates app active so you can order Taco Bell.

4. Typos

This is the time where I tell you to go over your resume with a fine-tooth comb. Send it to your sugar daddy, your real daddy, your baby daddy…whoever, and catch all those pesky little spelling errors. No one is ever going to trust you to write an email on their behalf, let alone handle any sort of responsibility, if you have written mistakes in your resume. This is supposed to be your *good* first impression.

Believe me, this is coming from the girl who literally almost didn’t graduate college because she couldn’t pass a grammar test (true story), and somehow I was able to find tools to post this article mistake-free (have you ever heard of the internet?!), so I’m pretty sure you can figure out how to do this too.

5. A Second Page

Unless you’re a f*cking CEO, make your resume a clean single page. No one has time to read that much about you—sorry not sorry—you’re not *that* special. You literally might be the future Kanye of our generation, but your future employer doesn’t know that yet.

This means putting the most recent, impressive experience on your resume. Think of it like the thirst trap pictures you post of yourself on Instagram rather than the ones your Aunt Judy tagged of you on Facebook. Instead of focusing on just putting a sh*t ton of experience on your resume, focus on what you did in those experiences. Did you drive any sort of success in the role? Did you create something new? Are there numbers to back it up?! You’ll seem like a way more impressive betch if you include recent experience where you made an impact. Rather than a ton of random experience that doesn’t showcase your skills.

6. Your Salary Requirement

Even though you permanently imagine a rose gold pedestal underneath your feet at all times, don’t make this clear in your resume. In reality, we’re all basically begging for a job so we can afford another $25 cocktail at the trendiest spot. I have no doubt that at some point you’ll be able to demand millions, but today is not that day. Keep the salary discussions to in person and you’ll be good to go.

I can’t wait to see the big things you do with your new and improved resume. I’m pretty sure you’ll have employers literally sucking your d*ck, calling you nonstop to come interview with them. Just promise me you’ll put the name “boss betch” outside your corner office one day. Oh, and send me a personal thank you note.

Don’t forget to pre-order our THIRD book, When’s Happy Hour? now! It’s all the real career advice you won’t get from like, your guidance counselor.