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Search tip 2: Update your resume

The first few days in a job search can offer a flurry of activity. It can be tough to keep up momentum. Today is the second of 10 posts creating concrete to-dos during your search.

Item 2: Start working on your resume. Don't worry about the format at first, get the content on from your most recent role. The take a look at the content across the board before you start fiddling with details.

The big picture first:

1) Follow the page per decade rule: for many people at 5-6 years of experience, there is a temptation to go over the page. Resist the temptation!

2) Determine the goal of your resume: do you want to engage with people who will offer you advice or are you using it to get a job. Consider what each audience needs to see to engage with you.

3) Consider what work you're doing in the interim - is it worth establishing your own company formally to track the contributions you're making. It fills gaps in timing while also challenging you to acknowledge how you're giving back.

Content tips:

1) Before cutting out any content, review your strengths and make sure that they're actually highlighted on your resume.

2) If you're working to showcase the strengths, consider using our resume table ( to determine which skills you're showcasing now and what you actually want to be sharing

3) Focus on results! Whether it's the actual impact or the expected impact of your work, be clear on how it impacted your teams, clients, users, or whomever your constituents are.

4) Check the content by testing it out by creating a word cloud. There are lots of tools you can use to check what you've included, but the visual is a powerful reminder of what you've included.

5) Remove out-of-date content. This includes high school (once you're out of college), internships (if you're 5+ years out of school), etc. There may be exceptions if a brand is so notable that it may open doors, but consider leaving that for LinkedIn.

6) Ensure all bullets are in the past-tense. You should be including things that you've accomplished (even if you're continuing to accomplish them).

Some simple formatting tips:

1) Keep the font to at least 10pts - no one wants to be hunting through small fonts for details, not even computers that are auto-reading resumes.

2) Use "print preview" to check what content shines through if someone is taking a quick glance through your resume.

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