HR Would Be Better if It Was Purple
January 14, 2015
Word of the Year
January 26, 2015

For those of you that are starting off the year by either continuing a job search or starting a new one – here are a few tips to help “hook” those recruiters:

  1. Resumes are about accomplishments, not duties. For example, if your experience includes file management: “Accurately and efficiently managed filing system for over 1,000 client files”
  2. No resume should EVER be longer than 2 pages, regardless of length of career history. The vast majority can only be 1 page.
  3. You’ve got a tiny window of time to catch a recruiter’s attention – put your most important achievements first.
  4. If you have any certifications, add the credentials after your name so they’re one of the first things recruiters see.
  5. Only new graduates should lead with their education, GPA, etc. If you have any work experience, move your education information to the bottom of your resume. Take off your GPA after 1-2 years of work experience.
  6. Objectives are dead. Use that space to give a summary of what you bring to the table.
  7. As much as possible, use bullet points and lists instead of written paragraphs
  8. Send your resume in a PDF file so you keep your formatting without any issues.
  9. Double-check your file name; I’ve seen “Jane Doe Marketing Resume” on applications for HR positions. Keep file names simple (Catherine Schmidt Resume).
  10. Ensure the email address included on your resume is professional sounding – not something silly like: “”
  11. Include industry information for previous employers unless the company is well known (most are NOT well known).
  12. Errors and misspellings get you cut from the candidate pool, ask someone else to edit and review to help you find them – after a while of re-reading your resume, you may become “blind” to grammatical issues.
  13. If you are an “experienced” potential employee and are worried that you may be turned down for having “too much” experience – stay away from including numbers regarding your years of experience and don’t include how many years you plan to stay in the workforce.
  14. Pictures and graphics don’t need to be included (and shouldn’t be included) unless it’s relevant to the industry you’re in (graphic designer, etc.)
  15. Make small edits to your resume every time you apply for a job. For example, if you’re applying for an HR position with “recruiting experience desired”, make sure your recruiting accomplishments are listed first.

Best of luck on your job search!

Catherine Schmidt
Catherine Schmidt
Catherine Schmidt is a former member of the Purple Ink team. She has a special interest in career coaching and recruiting and finds joy when she can connect the right person to the right opportunity.

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