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BY:- Shivadeep Panjwani

The Resume Matters...

Resume screening is like an arranged marriage meeting, where you decide whether the girl / boy is smart, has good values, is compatible, has a good future etc, etc. in just 30 minutes. Similarly, a recruiter in India spends less than 90 seconds to decide the fate of a bio-data. So here are some quick tips on how to ensure you grab the recruiter's attention.

1. Grooming of your resume- First impressions counts big time. And a chaotic format of a resume is a sure shot way of ruining it.

  • If you think a different font for every different paragraph is a good idea, then stop now. And if you do copy- pasting of words from different resumes or CVs and job descriptions, then at least change all their fonts to one type and size.
  • Always avoid using different colour fonts.
  • Keep the format of your resume simple and consistent. I get resumes where Experience one will have dates, role, reporting and then Experience two will have only grade and summary. So, ensure uniformity and consistency & avoid such mistakes.
  • Font size of the content has to be between 10 and 12 and the zoom should be at 100%. It’s easy on the eyes & anyone can read it completely with comfort.
  • Please take care of alignment. A bad alignment gives a negative impression.

2. Spelling & Grammar - Why would you make spelling or grammatical mistakes? If your English is not good, then use 'Spell Check' feature of MS-Office to make spelling and grammatical corrections. They can almost make your language error free. Those with very good English should control the irrelevant or exhaustive content. This is not a contest about who can put in extravagant words.

3. Less is more - Just because you have sent 7-8 pages of your resume do not mean that you have done more work. Resumes should never be more than 3 pages. In India, a 4 page may still be acceptable, but anything more than that may refrain the focus of reader from your core content. While sending your resume to countries outside India, a one page or maximum 2 page bio-data is preferred.

4. The story board- Stop the urge of writing your experience in the order that pleases you. Reverse chronology is a good way to go. You must start with the most recent experience and end with your first.

5. Incorrect figures- Don't fudge your dates. Don't try to cover up your gaps. Most of the organisations are open to hiring those candidates who have taken a break in their career. But almost no organization will keep a candidate who lied on his resume. It's a vicious circle; you lose the job immediately and create another break in your career which you would have to hide again by fudging yet another time.

6. Highlight achievements- You need to mention some of the big achievements in your job. Just writing about your responsibility may not be enough. If you have had no noteworthy achievements, skip it.

7. Hobbies:  I am not a fan of candidates writing their hobbies, family details and reference details on the resume. You may want to mention it if you are an absolute fresher and you got nothing else to write. But try to think of hobbies outside - travelling, reading, cooking and watching movies. Recruiters have a blind spot to these. Freshers need to mention more about their internships, projects or summer jobs.

8. Don't miss out essentials: Some resumes are without email ids or contact nos. Please ensure to fill in mandatory details like your address, contact no & email ID. Also give a brief about the companies you have worked for in the past in a two line. Do mention your date of birth or graduation year and don't find a reason to hide it.

9. Content: Try to make the content of your resume by you-self. Fancy and fake responsibilities might get you an interview but almost never get you the job. Market yourself well through the work you have done, but don't overdo it. Leave some things to be talked about in an interview. If you have a varied experience, you should customize your resume on the basis of the job you are applying for.

10. Covering Letters: Covering letters are passe, but what I mean here is the body of the email that houses your resume as an attachment. Keep this crisp and clear. Talk about what kind of job you are looking for and your location preferences. How formal the language on the email should be is based on the type of industry or company you are applying for. PSUs or govt organizations prefer a very formal language. However the sunrise industries may prefer a slightly informal verbiage.

I hope these tips will help the people to resonate with recruiters & hiring managers and will get them for interview.

Shivadeep Panjwani


MAP_IT, Dept of Science & Technology,

Govt of M.P, Bhopal