Last week, we published a blog discussing common resume mistakes, and we didn’t hold back in our critique. Sometimes, a little tough love is necessary. If you haven’t had a chance to read it yet, you can find it right here.

As promised, we’re back this week to shed light on what constitutes a strong resume. In the past week, we received a staggering 1,000 resumes from eager applicants. Surprisingly, only 10 of those candidates managed to secure first interviews. It’s not that the other 990 lacked the necessary skills or qualifications; they simply didn’t effectively communicate them. We cannot stress enough how crucial it is to tailor your resume to the specific job you’re applying for. Many professionals mistakenly rely on a generic, one-size-fits-all resume, inadvertently signaling to employers that they might not be the right fit for the company.

Whether a company is handling hiring internally or collaborating with a recruiter, the initial resume scan is universal. What we’re after are keywords and phrases. Study the job description carefully and incorporate those keywords into your resume. If the job description uses abbreviations for certain skills or certifications, follow suit. If they spell everything out, then do the same. Of course, always ensure you’re honest about your capabilities. If you feel the need to include an objective statement (though it’s often unnecessary), make sure it’s directly relevant to the position or the company. For instance, if you’re genuinely passionate about the type of clients the company serves, that could be a worthwhile inclusion in your opening statement.

Your resume serves as a quick overview of your qualifications. Prioritize showcasing your proficiencies, making sure they are easily readable. Simple is often better. Detailed discussions about your proficiency will come later in the interview process. A well-crafted resume should mention certifications only if they’re explicitly requested in the job posting. Highlight specific skill sets relevant to the position, followed by your work experience and history to substantiate these qualifications. Once again, keep your work history and experience directly related to the position you’re seeking. Keep everything concise and to the point. If your resume exceeds one page, it’s worth asking yourself why and what non-relevant information can be omitted.

The concept is straightforward. At MSP Hire, our role is to utilize our vScreening process to identify top IT talent for Managed Service Providers. Your role as an applicant is to make it effortless for us to recognize you as the cream of the crop. It all starts with a clean, focused, and straightforward resume that flows smoothly, with keywords and phrases jumping off the page. Your job continues during the interview phase, and we’ll be back with updates on the Do’s and Don’ts of interviewing so stay tuned.