Resume Tips from Recruiters

Mike O'Brien,

Most job seekers are satisfied with a resume that does a "good" job positioning them and presenting their skills and experience. But according to national online recruiting expert, "good" isn't enough in today's tight job market-particularly at the leadership level. "Would you allow the brakes on your car to just be 'good enough'?" asks founder and CEO Mike O'Brien. "How about your parachute? What we're finding in today's recruiting environment is that a job seeker's resume has become the key to unlocking doors at a new organization-or keeping them slammed shut. If your resume isn't a perfect representation of your skills, accomplishments and experience, you're just standing in your own way."

But whether searchers seek outside assistance or update their resumes themselves, resume improvement has become a critical part of the job search process. "Recruiters are now reviewing at least 300 resumes per posted position," explains O'Brien. "If your resume has errors, is not easily scanned, or does not properly sell you as a candidate, you will likely end up in the 'no' pile."

After watching recruiters sort through thousands of resumes, learned these valuable tips:

Use Generic 12pt fonts:'s recruiters became visibly frustrated when they had to increase the font size so they could read it.

Save your resume as a Word or .pdf file -- nothing else:

A number of resumes that cross recruiters' desks are saved as CSV or RTF files -- but this approach can be dangerous. More than one recruiter said that they are unable to open odd files due to their company's policies.

Create an easily scanned document:

Experienced recruiters can scan a resume in less than 30 seconds. They have trained themselves to process a resume quickly, and then sort it into the "yes" pile or the "no" pile. Resumes that appear confusing or too dense don't fare well in this system.

Provide context for little-known companies:

If you've worked at a company that isn't top-of-mind for a recruiter, explain a bit about the organization within your resume. For example, the following description not only names the organization, but positions it well for a recruiter's consideration:

"Stem Company ABC, a $30,000,000 leading manufacturer of Stem Cell Equipment located in the New York with approximately 300 employees"

To help its members navigate the resume review process, recently added a complimentary Resume Analysis for all Climber Premier members – and according to O'Brien, the service has grown far more quickly than anticipated. "Our process is unique," explains O'Brien. "First, we have professional recruiters (who have reviewed thousands of resumes) review a member's resume. They then provide that member with insightful feedback that helps the member construct a better resume which leads to more interviews."

Mike O'Brien is an innovative entrepreneur dedicated to helping others create breakthrough success, and is the founder and CEO of, one of the nation's leading online career-management sites. For more information about how to find your perfect career, visit, or connect with Mike on LinkedIn.

Next: More Resume Bloopers and Blunders >>

Read Full Story