A resume or CV is basically a story about your professional background that you use to apply for job opportunities. It tells the employer about your education, work experience, skills, and other stuff that's relevant to the job you're applying for. You want to make sure your resume shows that you're a good fit for the position and that you have what it takes to add value to the company. So, you'll want to highlight the things that make you stand out and show why you're the best candidate for the job. By putting together a great resume, you'll increase your chances of getting an interview and landing your dream job. In case you're wondering why you should bother reading this post on building an outstanding resume, let me explain. With the high competition, especially in the tech market, you're not the only one applying for an open position. You only need to take a quick look at platforms like LinkedIn to see what I mean. This means that a hiring manager or recruiter receives countless applications for each open position. On average, employers spend only six to seven seconds looking at each resume, according to Indeed. It's brutal, I know, but it's the same for everyone, so you can't really complain. The good news is, if you know how to build your resume right, you can increase your chances of keeping the employer interested for a longer time. That's why it's worth taking the time to read this blog post and learn how to stand out from the crowd.
As an ex-mechanical engineer, I learned to solve problems by breaking them down into their components, here the same rule applies if we want to build a professional resume. Below are must-needed components for a tech resume.
Name and Title
When it comes to crafting your resume, it's important to start with your name and title. These two pieces of information should be easy to locate on your resume, so make sure they stand out by using a larger and bolder font. Additionally, it's crucial to use the right title on your resume. Avoid using vague or ambiguous titles such as "student" or "aspiring" before your job title. Instead, use a title that accurately reflects the position you are applying for. For instance, if you have transitioned from being an accountant to pursuing a career in data science, don't use the title "accountant" on your resume for a data science role. Using an irrelevant title won't help you get noticed by recruiters or hiring managers.
In this section, make sure to provide your contact information such as your phone number and email address. It goes without saying that having a professional LinkedIn account is essential in today's job market, so be sure to include it on your resume. Additionally, including a link to your Github account and portfolio can greatly enhance your candidacy and make you a more attractive candidate to potential employers.
This section of your resume is arguably the most important one. A well-crafted and concise paragraph that summarizes your skills and abilities can make all the difference between being ignored or standing out to potential employers. Consider it your chance to advertise yourself and convince employers why they should be interested in you.
Start by stating what you are capable of, and be specific. Many professionals, even those who are senior, struggle to articulate what they do. It's crucial to figure out the answer to this question. For example, as a data scientist, your job is not to simply use AI tools, but to solve business problems through data-driven approaches, such as analyzing data, identifying patterns, and designing experimental models. The key is to see the big picture and be able to explain it to non-technical individuals.
Next, explain how your skills and abilities impact the employer. As a data analyst, for example, your work helps stakeholders make better decisions, leading to an increase in ROI or a reduction in costs. As a UX designer, your work can increase customer satisfaction, which can lead to customer loyalty, repeated business, and positive word-of-mouth, ultimately driving sustainable and profitable growth for the company.
In the next sentence, describe your level of experience and expertise in the profession, as well as any relevant markets or topics. For instance, as a data scientist, you may have extensive experience in machine learning and may have worked in the advertising industry in the past.
Finally, in the last sentence, highlight the most relevant skills you possess. For a data scientist, this might include proficiency in programming and mathematics. Keep this section brief, limited to a maximum of three sentences and 40 words.
[what do you do?] [How do you do that?] [What is the impact on the business?]. [Your is your title?] [What is your Level of maturity/years of experience?] [What is your Specialization/focus? Do you have expertise in a field or sector?]. [What are your relevant skills?].
This section is a brief summary of your academic qualifications, and it's important to include only the most relevant information. If you have recently graduated from college or university, you should focus on your higher education and exclude your high school diploma. In general, it's a good idea to exclude any education that's older than 10 years, unless it's directly relevant to the job you're applying for. If you don't have a formal education related to the job, consider including any relevant training or certifications that you have obtained. In some fields, such as tech, relevant experience may be more important than formal education, but including an irrelevant bachelor's degree can still demonstrate your ability to research and complete assignments. Keep this section concise and include only the following details: education start and end date, level of education (e.g., BSc or MSc), name of institution, the country where you studied, program/course title, program/course modules, and GPA/module marks/degree classification if relevant.
Skills are a crucial section of your resume. It's important to highlight the technical skills you have developed that make you a suitable candidate for the job you are applying for. As a data scientist, for example, you are required to have analysis, visualization, statistical, and machine-learning skills. While you can also add your soft skills to the list, it is more practical to address them in the project section. List your skills based on your level of proficiency to provide a quick overview of your capabilities to the employer.
In this section, you can highlight the tools, software, and programming languages you are familiar with. While you don't need to be a master of all the tools you list, it's important to have a basic understanding of each one so you can answer any questions that come up in your interview. Try to keep the list concise and ordered based on your level of proficiency. Additionally, you may want to include a subsection that lists the libraries you have experience with. For instance, as a data scientist, you might mention libraries such as Pandas, NumPy, ScikitLearn, and Matplotlib.
Certificates and Awards:
Highlight any relevant certificates and awards you have earned, with those from well-recognized institutions and organizations given priority.
To conclude, it's crucial to keep in mind that your resume functions as a narrative of your professional journey that you leverage to secure employment opportunities. The objective is to showcase that you possess the required skills and expertise to be an asset to the company and are a suitable candidate for the job. A well-crafted resume significantly improves your prospects of securing an interview and landing your desired job. In Part Two, we will delve deeper into the essential components of a tech resume, such as work experience, projects, and other crucial details that can elevate your profile and distinguish you from the competition.