7 Changes You Should Make to Your Resume Before Applying for Your Next Job

iStock
iStock

Even if you're not actively looking for a new job, your resume should be ready and waiting in case your dream job opportunity comes knocking on your door. But keeping your resume up-to-date means more than just adding your most recent work experience. Resume styles change just like clothing trends do, and if you don’t adjust yours, it'll be the equivalent of wearing a pantsuit with shoulder pads (not the cool kind) to an interview.

First impressions on the page are just as important as first impressions in an interview: Recruiters spend an average of about three minutes reading a resume, and they made up their minds in the first minute. According to technology research firm Altimeter Group, one in five recruiters will reject a candidate before they’ve finished reading the resume.

We spoke with professional resume writers to learn seven changes you should make to your resume today in order to keep up with the times.

1. BE SOCIAL.

“This is a supplement to your resume,” says Graham Nelson, senior resume writer with A Better Resume Service. Nelson always recommends adding your LinkedIn address; and if you're applying for a position with a startup or in social media, pop on your Twitter and Instagram handle as well.

2. DITCH YOUR HOTMAIL EMAIL ADDRESS.

If you still have a Yahoo, Comcast, or AOL email account, you’ll want to upgrade before you start applying to jobs, Nelson says. “You’ll look passé, and this is a matter of image,” he says. Gmail is a safe bet. And if you're clinging to a cutesy or NSFW screename, it's time to change it to a variation on your first and last name (no nicknames).

3. ADD A SUMMARY.

Previously, resumes had objective statements. Now, those are out and summaries of your skill sets are in, says Anna Kondratenko, CEO of Same Day Resume. “Depending on your job, you need to make sure that you have the correct key words and correct skill in your summary statement,” Kondratenko says. For example, if you’re applying for a job in finance management, then you should add finance management, investment management, and communication skills in your summary. This is especially helpful when you are sending in an online application and the first set of eyes on your materials may be a bot scanning for keywords.

4. BRUSH UP ON YOUR SKILLS.

This section is also important, Kondratenko says. Some recruiters will skip the summary section and go straight to the skill section. For this, you can transfer keywords that you saw in the job description right into your skill section.

5. SAY GOODBYE TO TIMES NEW ROMAN.

Remember when Times New Roman was the go-to font? That’s ancient history. “That was five years ago,” Kondratenko says. Now, Cambria and Calibri are popular for resumes.

6. LEAVE YOUR MARK.

“Use the resume as a jumping off point to create a uniformly branded portfolio of job search tools,” says Dana Leavy-Detrick, founder and resume strategist at Brooklyn Resume Studio. Leavy-Detrick suggests including your website and any other logos you may have to create a look for your personal brand. And where appropriate, use font styles and colors to create a cohesive aesthetic across all of your application materials.

7. QUOTE A SUPERVISOR OR PEER.

This should be a quote that encapsulates your strengths and values, Leavy-Detrick says. Most people will add this to the end of the resume, but it could also go at the top so it’s one of the first things your audience reads, she says.

Spending a Lot On Books? This Browser Extension Tells You if They’re Available at Your Local Library

artisteer/iStock via Getty Images
artisteer/iStock via Getty Images

If your battle-worn bookcase is groaning under the weight of all the books you've bought online, let us introduce you to a delightful browser extension that you didn’t know you needed.

As CNET reports, Library Extension is a free way to automatically see if the book you’re about to purchase can be checked out from a library (or libraries) near you. After you install it here—for either Chrome or Firefox—click on the tiny stack of books that appears next to your search bar, and choose your state and public libraries from the dropdown menu. Then, search for a book on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Audible, or Google Books, and a box along the right side of your window will tell you how many copies are available. It also works on Goodreads, so you don’t even have to be committed to buying your next great read for it to come in handy.

If you’re not picky about book formats, you can add digital catalogs from platforms like OverDrive, Hoopla, and Cloud Library in your extension preferences, and your results will list e-book and audiobook copies among the physical ones. Once you’ve found something you’d like to check out, just click “borrow” and the extension will deliver you straight to its corresponding page on the library’s website.

For veteran library patrons, navigating various catalogs to find the perfect novel might seem simple—or even a little like hunting for treasure—but it can overwhelm a novice borrower and make them stick to one-click purchasing on familiar e-commerce sites. Library Extension takes the confusion out of the process, and gives you the opportunity to save some money, too.

Though the extension will only show you books, they’re not the only things you could be borrowing—here are 11 unexpected items you might be able to check out from your local library.

[h/t CNET]

The 20 Best States to Retire in 2020

Robert Clay Reed/iStock via Getty Images
Robert Clay Reed/iStock via Getty Images

Spending your workdays dreaming of retirement? It’s the ultimate goal of any longtime office-dweller, but figuring out when you’re ready to finally take the plunge is one of many questions aspiring retirees need to ask themselves before quitting the 9-to-5 grind for good. Determining where to retire is equally important, as you’ll need to think not just about affordability, but quality of life and health care as well.

Personal finance website WalletHub crunched the numbers on all 50 states to come up with an official ranking on the best (and worst) states to retire. Their experts looked at 47 different factors and enlisted the help of a panel of experts.

Ultimately, it turns out that the idea of retiring to Florida is still very much alive. The Sunshine State took the top spot in the poll, largely because of its affordability (it came in second in that category overall, with only Alabama besting it). But spending your golden years on a beach somewhere doesn’t seem to be for everyone; while Colorado and New Hampshire certainly have their warm-weather seasons, they also accumulate plenty of snow each year—which didn’t seem to matter as they clinched the second and third positions on the list, respectively. Here are the 20 best states to retire:

  1. Florida
  2. Colorado
  3. New Hampshire
  4. Utah
  5. Wyoming
  6. Delaware
  7. Virginia
  8. Wisconsin
  9. Idaho
  10. Iowa
  11. South Dakota
  12. Montana
  13. Pennsylvania
  14. Massachusetts
  15. Ohio
  16. Minnesota
  17. Texas
  18. South Carolina
  19. North Dakota
  20. Missouri

The news was far less happy for Kentucky, which claimed the last spot on the list (followed closely by New Mexico, Rhode Island, New Jersey, and West Virginia).

You can view an interactive version of the map below, and visit WalletHub to see more detailed information on each state’s ranking.

Source: WalletHub

SECTIONS

arrow
LIVE SMARTER