5 Characteristics of a Great Resume

In the last few years, the economy, the job market, what companies look for in leadership, how we absorb information, how we search for what we want to have all changed drastically. As a result, what makes a great resume has changed.

What is a great resume?

resume-held-by-man-in-suitIt will be seen. If the keywords are not present in the resume, it WILL NOT BE SEEN. Also, now it is more than just keywords. Applicant Tracking Systems, the software that parses your resume into their proprietary database from the posting response, are now starting to be equipped with AI so now a resume needs to be more inclusive then in years past. Nevertheless, all information is viewed via search returns or alerts from the company’s database.

It is easy to follow and understand. In our ever-changing economy, any experience prior to five years ago is most likely irrelevant to a potential employer. Any interest in your legacy experience is more to understand your career path, choices, and environments to which you have been exposed. Don’t under estimate the power of the story. The legacy experience does build a powerful story that your resume review absorbs in 5-10 seconds, so it is best to include but no need to go into details on the content.

It is optimized to be scanned for pertinent information. Thanks to the copious amounts of information available to us, no one reads anymore unless they are on vacation, drinking a beverage accessorized with an umbrella. Your resume will be scanned for your ROI and the specific accomplishments that prove it. Make sure you know what your value proposition is and it is evident throughout your resume.

The bullets are rich with accomplishments defined by quantitative results. If your accomplishment bullets read like opinions with fluffy adverbs and adjectives rather than progress and value-add items on a shareholder report, you might want to give your resume a makeover.

It reflects your amazing working style. Your resume should look exactly like a finished document you would present to your boss, Sr. Management, BoDs or investors. An Experienced Hire Corporate Recruiter for a Big4 Accounting and Consulting firm told me she is flabbergasted by the fact that such experienced professionals deliver documents that are riddled with formatting and grammatical errors. The thought being that if there is such a lack of attention to detail and an inability to clearly and concisely enunciate quantitative results in a document, “why would the working style be any different?”

As part of their membership, ExecuNet members can have their resume reviewed by someone in our Career Strategy group at no cost.

Saundra Botts

Saundra Botts

Saundra is an ExecuNet Career Strategist and Career Coach. Working 1:1 with high-level senior executives, Saundra provides strategic guidance and coaching to help ExecuNet members land their next great opportunity. This includes uncovering their unique personal value proposition and defining competitive differentiators to advance their careers. Additionally, she provides detailed feedback for improving a personal marketing collateral—well beyond their résumé. Leveraging her expertise, Saundra guides executives through the entire process from entering the job market, which for most is their first time, identifying the path to success, to onboarding with their new company and beyond to create job security.

Saundra is known for “opening doors” and has also facilitated Job Search and Transition Workshops for universities, FENG (Financial Executive Networking Group), and various executive leadership groups. Her depth of experience includes has over 15 years in Retained Search and contingency placement within corporate accounting and finance sector with First Call Search, Dubin & Lee and WinterWyman Search. Saundra has consulted with clients, ranging from start-ups to multi-billion-dollar conglomerates. She has worked with $12 billion companies building accounting and finance teams, succession planning, and hiring, as well as filling key positions at many medium-sized, publicly-traded companies; non-profits; and universities in Boston, Miami and Los Angeles. ExecuNet Career Strategist and Career Coach.

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