Getting Past the 15 second Scan
Writing a resume isn't all that difficult, but reading them
is a different
story. That's because most resumes lack focus and contain
words. They have a reputation of being pretentious and vague,
and no one
wants to read them all the way through. Yours won't be the
only document on
the News Director's desk, so it must look good, be reader
friendly, and easy
to understand. Most resumes get a 15 second glance before
anyone decides to
read them further. If you sift through dozens of press releases
then you'll understand what I'm talking about. The same rule
resumes. The writing must be crisp and get the reader's attention.
Here are some tips to get past the 15 second scan:
1. Write a summary or Professional Profile that gives an
overview of your
experience, talent, knowledge, and special skills. It's the
teasing a story to keep viewers watching. Give the reader
a hint of your
best stuff right at the top of the resume.
2. Choose a fine linen paper that photocopies well. You never
people will be looking at it.
3. Do not fold your resume, but instead use a large white
Folds blot out lines of text, just in case your resume is
resume will also look more professional if it's not all folded
4. If your paper contains a watermark, be sure the watermark
is reading the
same direction as the text on the paper. Hold it up to the
light. If it's
backwards, or upside down, it may be tossed out.
5. Utilize white space and make the formatting nice to look
Write your profile to match your employer's needs, yet show
strengths. Here's an example:
Over 5 years' experience as a network Television News Reporter
expertise focusing on career coaching and resume writing.
combined with exceptional writing skills and attention to
computer literate with typing skills exceeding 65 WPM. Tenacious
inquisitive: familiar with San Diego's history, politics,
Earned B.S. Degree in Communications.
If you can get your reader past the 15 second scan, your
for a job interview. Make those 15 seconds count!
Next week's column: Choosing the right format