Resume proofing: A critical task
Anyone who has ever written a resume will agree that writing, formatting and completing such an important document is a time consuming process; and in order to ensure that a resume achieves the goal for which it was prepared, there is one important step which must be taken before it is sent to designated recipients – potential employers. However, a surprisingly high number of professionals make the mistake of not reviewing their final resume document with fresh eyes before sending it out, thereby relegating it to the recycling bin.
That having been said, it might seem redundant to emphasize the importance of proofreading what you may believe to be a well-written resume document before forwarding it to potential employers; but reviewing, editing and perfecting such a document is a routine (or even a habit) that you – if you are a job applicant writing your own resume – should adopt, since failing to do so can have an undesired result on your chances of securing the job in which you are really interested.
With that in mind, you are encouraged to take a look at the following concepts which we hope will help you with the final stages of perfecting your well-written resume and making sure the document is in top shape before it reaches any of the potential employers to whom you intend to send it.
Check for grammar and spelling errors
Proofreading your resume document is one of the most critical steps in your resume review process, because it is often hard to catch composition errors after you’ve spent hours writing and re-writing all parts of it, or any other important document; but it is something which must be done and there are two workable methods you can use to effectively catch resume errors
One method is to ask someone else to proofread your resume, or give yourself time between writing and reviewing it; and if you ask a friend or a family member for help, make sure that their strengths include spelling and grammar; but they should also be able to edit your resume for content and consistency in style. Asking others to review your resume, however, should be done with parameters. For example, let your friend know what you are struggling with, so that they can help you address those concerns.
Because personal preferences can come into play when you are discussing resumes, make sure the changes you make are the kind with which you are comfortable in terms of content. Another method you can utilize in proofreading, which should be thought of as a must, is to step away from the document for a day or two, and then revisit it for a final review. This gives you some space from the content, and will allow you to review for grammatical and spelling errors with fresh eyes.
Printing out and emailing your resume
So that you know what your potential employers will receive after you submit your resume, just print out the document and take a look at its appearance, or email it to yourself (if you have more than one email address), or email it to a friend or family member where you will have immediate access to the digital version. However, you must make sure to print your resume from the file in which you are emailing it to your employer; and make sure that the margins are set properly and are not cutting off any content.
Look for spaces and adjust the text in case of any large gaps on the paper. In addition, if you email your resume to some of your friends, have them open the file and let you know how it appears on their screen, as well as how it prints out. Addressing any formatting issues before your resume reaches a potential employer is ideal, so doing a couple of test runs will only assist you in developing an error-free final resume.
The resume-to-job requirements comparison
When you do a comparison of your resume to a particular job’s requirements, it is important to make sure that all requirements are addressed, either in your resume or your cover letter; and a major part of such comparison is to review exactly what the employer is looking for and make sure that your resume addresses all of their needs. Keep in mind that when potential employers receive your resume, they will look for key terms from their job description in order to match your qualifications to their available position.
If possible, use some of the same terminology on your resume as the employer used on the job description, as this will let the employer know that you are in sync with their needs, thereby making them more interested in you as the ideal candidate for the job. Ask one of your friends to review the job description and your resume as well, and give you their impression on how well the two match.
Meticulous review = landing a great job!?
Probably the most important thing you should take away from this article, is the fact that a poorly written and/or formatted resume will – in effect – let most of your potential employers know that you don’t pay any attention to detail; but on the other hand, taking whatever extra time that is necessary to do a final review of your resume document is one of the most important things you can do in getting an employer’s attention, thereby ensuring that you get the job you really want.