Six Seconds

Six Seconds

Jun 21 2015 By Chelsea Garrett

That’s how long executive recruiters take to skim your resume.  Skim, not read.  We skim because most resumes say the same thing.

Understand that as an executive search firm, we begin our search by identifying the first batch (200+) of prospective candidates.  Once we identify those individuals and start reviewing resumes, we want to shrink that list as quickly as possible to get to our short list.   If you want to be on the short list, understand that the simplest, most straightforward, chronological resume is the fastest way to get there.

Although I appreciate good, professional resume writers, I cringe when I see a resume that has all of the latest buzzwords and blocks of paragraphs explaining your mission statement and experiences lumped together.  Unless you are a friend of the person interviewing you, no one will take time to sift through a resume in this format.  Resume writers sell their services by making you ‘unique’.  You can express yourself through your LinkedIn profile or during the interview process, but the resume is a historical account of your career.

What we are looking for is a straightforward, chronological resume.  We want to see how your career has progressed over the years.Don’t be afraid to make the outline of the resume simple and straightforward.

Make it simple so your target audience can easily ascertain where you fit into the company, the scope of your job and your accomplishments in that role.  Your target audience isn’t just the CEO, CFO, or CMO, but it is also the junior researcher, recruiter or even, intern.   The reader must be able to easily understand what you do for your company and where you fit inside it.   Don’t expect the reader to take time to put the puzzle pieces together and push your resume through to the next level.

Ideally, you will be referred into a company for a job or learn about it through a search firm, but if that’s not the case and you must send it to an unknown party,  will your resume stand on its own or do you need to be there to explain the story?