Did you know that for any given job opening about 118 people apply? Out of this number, only 20% get an interview.
With the odds being what they are, it's more important than ever to make your resume stand out.
If you're in the IT industry, your competition will be equally as talented individuals. How can you make your IT resume stand out? Check out these tips.
Make the Numbers Count: Quantify Accomplishments
When you're trying to make your industry experience and accomplishments jump out on your resume, you need to rely on numbers.
In a resume page full of words, numbers are surely going to stand out and get the attention of the person reading it.
Make sure you identify your accomplishments based on volume as much as you can. For example, how much money were you able to save the company?
You might be able to find other ways to quantify your accomplishments depending on your job title and expertise.
Use the Right Verbs
You've probably been told from an early age to always use active voice and verbs. This "rule" applies to your resume.
If you want the IT industry to really notice you, try playing around with power verbs on your resume. Use words that show potential employers you were active in your role.
For example, you can use words such as "produced," "chaired," "executed," "consolidated," "boosted," and many power verbs.
Emphasize Your Leadership and Team Player Skills
Depending on the type of job you're looking for in the IT industry, you will need to be a leader, a team player or both.
Almost all organizations look for candidates that can work well in a team setting and who can take leadership need be. If you possess both of these qualities, make sure you make them appear in your resume.
Let Them Know About Your Awards
Although you're trying to convince your future employer what a great candidate you are, showing them others think so as well will have a more significant weight.
If you've received any special recognition, honors, and awards, you should let them know on your resume.
You can add a honors and awards category on your resume if the awards are substantial. If not, you can blend them into your resume.
Some candidates prefer to keep all of their awards and recognitions limited to their LinkedIn page. You will need to make sure any potential employers have access to your profile if this is the case.
Tailor Your Resume to the Job
Although some people might want to have their resume be one size fits all, this won't get you noticed in the IT industry. While you can still leave some of the core information in your resume, you should tailor your resume to the specific job.
Candidates are encouraged to do this for a number of reasons. They can look for certain keywords in the job posting and add them to their resume.
In the IT industry for example, if the job requires you to be familiar with certain software, make sure you put it down on your resume.
When you tailor your resume to fit the job, it will show you're interested in that particular position rather than applying for multiple jobs to see which ones work out.
Don't Get Too Focused on Responsibilities
If you want your resume to stand out from the rest, don't spend too much time listing your responsibilities. Instead of listing what job duties you were responsible for, list your accomplishments.
For example, you should say, "configured x number of computers with x program," which sounds like an accomplishment. The opposite would be saying "responsible for configuring computers with x program."
Listing your achievements will make you more attractive to an employer. They don't want to know what you used to do, but what you excelled at.
Remove Irrelevant Information
Leaving qualifications off of your resume is just as important as adding them. Although you might want to add as much as you can to show you're a qualified candidate this may not always work in your favor.
You should leave out irrelevant experience. For example, if you're trying to get a job in IT, you don't have to mention the summer you spent working at Pizza Hut.
Adding your experience at Pizza Hut will not be relevant to an IT resume.
Another example would be putting your GPA on your resume -- you need to use your judgment on this one. You may not need to include your GPA if you've been in the IT industry for a few years since your experience will speak for itself.
However, if you're a student or fresh out of college, your GPA might strengthen your application when you're looking for an entry-level IT Job.
Proofread Your Resume
Nothing disqualifies a candidate faster from an IT job opportunity than a mechanical error.
Since hiring managers are looking for candidates that pay attention to detail, having typos and misspellings will give the wrong impression. Make sure you read your resume carefully and have someone else proofread it for you.
Don't Use Flowery Language or Fonts
You want your qualifications and accomplishments to stand out not blend into the background. Make sure you avoid any usage or flowery language that might be distracting to hiring managers.
Also, make sure the font and the format are not distracting. You want the font to help them navigate your resume not confuse them.
Add a Cover Letter
If you want to stay under a page, it might be challenging to highlight your experience. When you feel like you left stuff off your resume, you should always add a cover letter.
In the cover letter, you can explain to the employer which skills you can bring to the position. Remember to tell them what you can do for them rather than what they can do for you.
Making Your IT Resume Stand Out: The Bottom Line
Now that you know how to make your IT Resume stand out, it's time to land the job. Make sure you use power verbs, quantify your accomplishments, and proofread carefully.
If you happen to be looking for a job in IT? Check out our career page for the latest IT opportunities in the US and Canada. You can also contact our team directly through the form below. We'll be happy to answer any of your questions!