Top Tips for Crafting the Perfect IT Resume

When you’re in the midst of a job hunt, it can be easy to overlook one of the simplest elements of your profile – your resume. Read on to discover our top tips to make your IT resume stand out to any employer.

1. Strategize the Structure

Structure and format are two of the most important elements to consider when creating a resume that’s eye-catching and easy to read. Although the content will make your resume shine, structuring your information properly will help your qualifications stand out to any hiring manager. A brief summary of your career history is always great to include at the top, and organizing the rest of your resume for relevance is a simple next step. For example, if your career history is more significant than your education level, you should highlight your work-related accomplishments before getting into detail about your schooling, and vice versa.

2. Pay Attention to Length

IT and other highly technical resumes can sometimes go over the standard 2-page limit, which is okay in most cases – just don’t go overboard. When your work history is extensive, it’s best to be brief when describing employment that doesn’t directly relate to your new desired position, or if it was long enough ago that it’s no longer relevant, omit it entirely. Try to be brief in your descriptors and edit out unnecessary anecdotes. Stick to the basics – a summary, your skillset, your education, and relevant accomplishments and achievements.

3. Highlight Accomplishments Over Tasks

While we’re on the topic of accomplishments and achievements, it’s important to note that this information will be of more value to a hiring manager than simply listing off your day-to-day tasks and responsibilities. As with most technical positions, you’ll be working with a suite of tools and technologies that should be detailed elsewhere in your resume, and as long as your future employer knows that you’re well-versed in the requirements for the role you’ve applied for, the mundanities of your daily tasks aren’t necessary. Focus instead on highlighting the large-scale achievements you made that were of tangible value to your former workplace. This shows that you can go above and beyond and really demonstrates what you’re capable of.

4. Emphasize Skills

As when highlighting your accomplishments, your skills and abilities should be another focus of your resume that you really take the time to flesh out and describe in detail. You could feature these in a list form, or include a description of the skills and tools required by each of your former positions. No matter how you choose to incorporate this element, it can be one of the most important aspects of your resume, so it’s worth an extra look to make sure you’re showing off what sets you apart.

5. Remove Unnecessary Information

An eye for detail is crucial when determining what to leave out of your resume, and these decisions can affect how successful your resume reads to a hiring manager. Consider removing elements that may not be relevant or necessary, such as personal interests, or a photo of yourself. These elements can be distracting and aren’t always needed. However, it’s good to remember the types of roles you’re applying for – if the position calls for someone personable who will be a great culture fit for the organization, it may be beneficial to describe some of your interests outside of work.

6. Avoid Abbreviations

It can be tempting to speak in highly technical jargon or abbreviate technical terms, but try to minimize this when putting together your information. It’s better to write clearly, using layman’s terms and avoiding abbreviation when you can. This will improve the flow of your resume for readers, and will make hiring decisions easier for managers who may not have all the same technical knowledge as you.

7. Keep it Up to Date

Lots of IT professionals have a considerable history in their field. This is obviously a big benefit, but it can also lead to pages and pages of unnecessary information. If your work history dates back prior to 2000, or you have lists of odd jobs that aren’t relevant to the opportunities you currently seek, it’s worth considering either condensing them into a brief section or eliminating them all together. You may also want to remove or shorten any sections detailing technologies that are no longer relevant. A lengthy work history sounds great, but when it’s no longer applicable to the current technology market, it can add unnecessary bulk to an otherwise successful resume.

8. Edit, Edit, Edit

A final edit for grammar, flow, punctuation, and other easily overlooked elements can be one of the most important things you do before sending in your profile. Basic, easy-to-fix errors show a lack of care and attention to detail, and those will read as big negative indicators to a potential employer. Make sure to go over your resume, or have a friend read it, to ensure that there aren’t any simple mistakes. You can also use spelling and grammar checking tools such as Grammerly to optimize your writing style.

Posted by Emily Couves in Career Advice