9 Tips for Improving Your Résumé

Walden University
Key Takeaways
​What? New year, new résumé. Taking your résumé from good to great requires attention to detail and effort.

So what? Highlighting your education and sharing acheivements are key components to include on your résumé.
Now what? Individuals seeking to update their résumé  should keep these tips in mind during revisions.

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Brought to you by: Walden University

The new year is a great time to start doing some serious career mapping. Whether you’re thinking about moving to a new company or climbing the ranks within your current organization, the one key tool most of us struggle to perfect is our résumé. And yet, a well written résumé has the power to get you the interviews you want, faster. Here are nine best practices that can help ensure your résumé stands out.

  1. Convey who you are. Whether it’s included in your résumé or cover letter, tell your story. Be sure to explain why you want this new position and the reasons you think you’re qualified.

    Example: “Marketing Manager seeking a brand management position with a consumer product, service or retail organization where I can contribute my knowledge, skill set, and leadership abilities.”

  2. Research the company and include a few points that reinforce your newfound knowledge. Mention the company’s name a few times as well.

    Example: “While researching Acme Company, I learned that you recently launched a new product into the healthcare vertical. During my time as a product marketing manager with XYZ Company, I collaborated with product management on several product launches into new target markets.”

  3. Don’t be shy. Not all of us feel comfortable bragging about ourselves, but when it comes to your résumé, that’s exactly what you should be doing. Just be sure you don’t overexaggerate. Honesty works best.

    Tip: Use numbers to share results on campaigns, email blasts, business impact, marketing reach, rebrand, etc. Marketing leaders are often metrics driven, so let the numbers do the talking.

  4. Highlight your education. If your degree ties directly to the job for which you’re applying, elaborate about your specialization or some of the coursework.

    Tip: Get creative here, but never falsify information. For example, if you’re applying for a digital marketing specialist role, but don’t have any experience, share some projects you may have worked on in school that relate to the experience.

  5. Don’t simply list tasks and responsibilities; share your achievements instead.

    DON’T: “Planned events”
    DO: “Planned a 500 person event that led to over $2M in sales opportunities for the organization.”

  6. Include the extras. If you volunteer, belong to business organizations, or if you've had a part-time job that speaks to your skills, be sure to include it.

    Tip: Joining marketing organizations gives you access to industry news, job search help, gives you access to a community of experts in your field, and so much more. Adding these organizations to your résumé shows your commitment to the profession, and that you are resourceful and well-connected.

  7. Explain anything an employer might consider negative. If you’ve changed jobs frequently or had a gap in employment, be sure to smooth things out with an explanation.

    Tip: Don’t wait for the interview to explain a gap in employment, or else you may never get that interview. List dates that you may have taken off to take care of family issues, travel, or if you were laid off due to lack of work from the company. It’s better to have an explanation than to leave the hiring employer wondering.

  8. Don’t make it a novel. A good résumé should be no longer than two pages.

    Tip: Remember to stick with the important elements, and remove anything that isn’t adding value. Oftentimes turning tasks into accomplishments can help shorten a ‘way too long’ resume.

  9. Triple-check your writing! We’re all capable of botching a cut-and-paste or misspelling a company’s name, so be meticulous in your review. It might also help to have a friend proofread your work.

    Tip: Review, edit, review, edit. Then review, and edit again. Lean on friends and family for a fresh pair of eyes. If your résumé is running onto three pages, another set of eyes can be helpful in editing it down as well.

Taking your résumé from good to great requires effort and attention to detail. The time you dedicate to it up-front can easily pay off in the form of interviews and job offers.

Learn about how an online Master of Business Administration (MBA) from Walden University can help prepare and accelerate your career in marketing.

Walden University
<p>Walden University is a for-profit Public Benefit Corporation, headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Walden University offers Bachelor of Science, Master of Science, Master of Business Administration, Master of Public Administration, Master of Public Health, Education Specialist, Doctor of Education, Doctor of Business Administration, and Doctor of Philosophy degrees in a number of academic fields. Walden is a part of a global network of 80 universities across 29 countries owned or managed by Laureate Education Inc.</p>