As a fresher, you prepare your resume and start the job hunting process. But sometimes you don’t get any replies or interview calls. This maybe because of some easy-to-correct mistakes in your resume. This post will help you identify and correct some major mistakes you may be making in your resume.
Why this post:
We all know how important it is to have a good resume. First impressions count, and the first impression that you will have on your interviewer is going to depend on how you present your resume. Generally, the employer spends very less amount of time for looking at a resume before deciding to call (or not call) the fresher for an interview. So in this situation, you have to prepare a professional resume that contains the right information so that it attracts the interviewer. We know this sounds superficial and it is! We realize that rejecting a candidate based on a 30-second glance at their resume is a mistake on the part of the interviewer. But it seems to happen all the time and we cannot correct the industry. So, instead, we thought we would help freshers make some superficial corrections that would greatly increase the chance of their resume being noticed.
What you can do
From our experience, if you follow the advice in this section, you will already be ahead of a large number of applicants.
1. Format the resume well
I find that freshers don’t think the formatting has an important place in resume preparation. If your resume is not properly formatted then the interviewer might think that you don’t do the work with much involvement. Some common formatting mistakes made are:
i) inconsistent spaces and line spacing between the paragraphs.
ii) bullets are not consistent.
iii) use of different fonts.
iv) heading and contents use the same font size.
Make sure that your resume is easy to read, easy to understand, and easy to digest. Here are some tips:
a) Fonts size and color matters
Do not to use fancy scripts or difficult to read fonts. Use the same font type for the entire resume. Stick to black and gray color font for all the text. It helps when your resume is printed out on paper.
b) Improve the line spacing
Your resume needs to have enough white space so that it is easy to read.
c) Use bullets
Bullet points are good for highlighting the important information. Try to change paragraphs into bullets.
d) Keep the format consistent
Try to use the same fonts, the same bullet point, consistent spacing between the contents.
2.Check for typos and grammatical mistakes
We don’t think this is fair – but typos and grammatical errors in resumes are interpreted as carelessness and unprofessionalism. We understand that English is not the first language for most applicants. English is not my first language either nor is the first language of any of my colleagues at Qxf2. We all struggle with grammar and spelling. That is fine. Here are two tips (that we use!) to catch and correct spelling and grammatical mistakes:
a) have someone buddy-check (or proofread) your resume
b) use a Chrome plugin called Grammarly that does an amazing job of catching grammar and spelling mistakes
3. Pay attention to the order in which you list your skills
We see this one often. Freshers will list all the languages where they studied during their graduation. They don’t follow any order when listing their skill set. For example, a fresher had listed the order of the languages he knew as:
When we asked him questions from C, he said that he knows only the basics of C language. But he said he knows Java very well. Most questions will be asked from the skill sets you list. So you have to be careful about the skills you list. Also reorder the skill set in the resume based on the companies you are applying for. First, list down all the skills you are fully confident and then list the ones you recently acquired.
4. Describe your projects well
One of the main highlights in a fresher’s resume is the final year project. Since the project is meant to develop your practical knowledge, recruiters will look for this section in the resume. It helps the interviewer to understand what exactly you did in your course and also it gives an idea about what are all the technologies you are good at. Many questions will be based on your project. So, write elaborately about your projects. Add the most recent and (hopefully) important project at the top, followed by the older projects. Every project should have a brief description, your role, the number of team members, your responsibilities and the technical skills you gained. Companies care about how you work in teams and how well you work with others. So do not forget to mention your role and the number of people in your team.
5. Exclude unnecessary information:
Since the interviewer will take very little time to review your resume, it shouldn’t be too long. But we notice that usually, freshers dump irrelevant details (e.g.: whatever prize they won during in high schools) just to lengthen their resumes. Try to keep your resume to less than one and half pages long.
We think these are all important points to be checked in a fresher’s resume. Let us know if you think of more points to be added.
I completed my Master in Engineering (Computer Science) and moved to academia. I pursued a career in teaching for several years. I handled several undergraduate Computer Science courses: Java, Information Security, Data structures and Operations Research. I was looking for remote working opportunities that would allow me to continue pursuing my technical interests. So I joined Qxf2. I have been enjoying testing software, writing Python and picking up a whole host of other useful testing tools. I am an enthusiastic learner, highly collaborative and strive for continuous improvement. My hobbies are practicing Yoga and playing badminton.