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Resumes normally get less than a 15-second glance at the first screening. If someone has asked you to review his resume and you want to help him ensure it gets read — or want to know if your own is up to par — be sure you can answer yes to the following questions:
· Does the resume look original and not based on a template?
· Is the resume inviting to read, with clear sections and ample white space?
· Does the design look professional rather than like a simple typing job?
· Is a qualifications summary included so the reader immediately knows the
applicant’s value proposition?
· Is the resume’s length and overall appearance appropriate given the career level
· Does the resume provide a visually pleasing, polished presentation?
· Is the font appropriate for the career level and industry?
· Are there design elements such as bullets, bolding and lines to guide readers’
eyes through the document and highlight important content?
· Is there a good balance between text and white space?
· Are margins even on all sides?
· Are design elements like spacing and font size used consistently throughout the
· If the resume is longer than a page, does the second page contain a heading? Is
the page break formatted correctly?
· Are all resume sections clearly labeled?
· Are sections placed in the best order to highlight the applicant’s strongest
· Is the work history listed in reverse chronological order (most recent job first)?
· Is the career objective included toward the top of the resume in a headline,
objective or qualifications summary?
· Is the resume targeted to a specific career goal and not trying to be a one-size-
· If this is a resume for career change, is the current objective clearly stated, along
with supporting details showing how past experience is relevant to the new goal?
· Does the resume include a solid listing of career accomplishments?
· Are accomplishments quantified by using numbers, percentages, dollar amounts
or other concrete measures of success?
· Do accomplishment statements begin with strong, varied action verbs?
· Are accomplishments separated from responsibilities?
· Is the information relevant to hiring managers’ needs?
· Does the resume’s content support the career goal?
· Is the resume keyword-rich, packed with appropriate buzzwords and industry
· Is applicable additional information, such as awards and affiliations, included,
while personal information like marital status, age and nationality unrelated to the
job target omitted?
· Is the resume written in an implied first-person voice with personal pronouns,
such as I, me and my, avoided?
· Is the content flow logical and easy to understand?
· Is the resume as perfect as possible, with no careless typos or spelling, grammar
or syntax errors?