• Leigh Gerstenberger

Top 2 Resume Tips: [Hint] Don't Give the Whole Story Away

Updated: Nov 12, 2018

“Less Is More, Don’t Give Away The Store”



Often when putting a resume together candidates feels obligated to share as much information about themselves as they can however, this isn’t always the best approach.  While you should always be honest about your background and experience, you should also be judicious with how much information you share in your CV.  There are a couple of reasons for this.  Sometimes too much information can give prospective employers data they don't need to make their hiring decision, which could work against the candidate.  Here are a couple of examples.


  • No need to list your entire mailing address – your resume only needs to include your name, city and state in which you  reside, your phone number and email address.  Your home street address does not need to be on  your resume.

  • While the dates you worked at various employers ARE important, you should omit the dates on which you graduated from high school and/or college.  This is particularly important for older job seekers.  Experience should be an advantage when being compared to other candidates and employers are not supposed to make hiring decisions based on age.  Dating yourself on your resume can work against you and prevent you from even getting to the first interview, where you want to “showcase” yourself.


In summary, don’t give away the store in your resume.  It should just be complete enough to want the hiring manager to schedule a call or meeting to learn more about you. 


“Providing too much information can result in the prospective employer reaching a conclusion about your background and abilities without having had the benefit of visiting with you personally.”


Quantify to Qualify


A well-structured resume should include not only a narrative about your accomplishments, but the numbers that support your achievements.  Keep in mind that “words" and “data” send two different messages.  Depending on the orientation of the hiring manager or HR screener, left brain (logical, linear, analytical); or right brain (intuitive, artistic, holistic) they will your experience differently.


Words are great and you need to make sure that you thoroughly explain your experience while making it interesting.  But remember, the best way to support your narrative is with data.  For example, it sends one message to say, “that your leadership resulted in YOY sales growth”, but it sends a different message to say, “under your leadership, sales grew 10% YOY from 2015 - 2018 resulting $1.5 million in new revenue”.


In order to drive home the key points around your capabilities, always try to support what you’ve done with data, sending the message that you are focused on results.  Having said this, some roles don’t easily lend themselves to quantifying your achievements so you may need to be creative and think outside the box. 


For example, if you’re an HR professional you might express your accomplishment this way, “instituted automated resume review process which resulted in a 50% increase in candidates interviewed reducing lead time from initial interview to hiring decision by 30 days”. Training professionals might highlight and quantify their accomplishments like this, “provided onboard training to 25 new loan officers per month who averaged a score of 90% on the assessment exam at the end of the course”. 


A well-structured resume should send a message that quantifies the quality of your work and experience in such a way as it will appeal to the reviewer, making them want to schedule a call or an in-person meeting to learn more about you and your qualifications.


If you'd like me to take a look at your resume, I'd be happy to. Shoot me a note here.

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