15 Essential Resume Tips for Landing Your Ideal Job

Written by
Resume Tips

Whether you’re working on landing your first job out of college or want to take a step up into your dream career, these tips can help you stand out. Writing a resume can be daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. You can create a resume that will help you stand out from the competition with the tips below. Find resume tips to help you get noticed.

Find side gigs designed around your time.

What’s the importance of a good resume?

The average recruiter spends just six to seven seconds looking at a resume. With only a short time to make an impression, a good resume that stands out can help you get that extra attention to land your dream job. The advantages of an outstanding resume include:

  • Standing out from other candidates
  • Creates a lasting impression on the hiring manager
  • Opens new career opportunities
  • Showcases your skills and talents so the recruiter can imagine placing you

With a strong resume and cover letter, you can open new doors to your dream career, a higher salary, or both. 

15 resume-writing tips for every job seeker

Here are 15 resume-writing tips to help you secure your next job. 

1. Keep your resume concise and to the point

Ideally, keep your resume within two pages with a professional summary at the top. Use headings and subheadings to make the resume scannable. This makes it easier for recruiters to get a sense of key positions and accomplishments. In order to keep your resume concise, tailor the resume to the job you’re applying for. 

For example, if you’re applying to be a security analyst, your management experience at a fast food restaurant in high school probably doesn’t need to be included. 

2. Use a clean, organized format

Use a professional font and format. Calibri, Ariel, or Times New Roman are good fonts. Some will suggest using only sans serif fonts, but there’s no industry-wide standard. Choose a font size of 11 or 12 to make the resume reasonable without being too small. Maintain a consistent format and style throughout the resume. 

3. Highlight work experience

According to Morgan of Resume Official, the job experience section of the resume is the most important but is actually the hardest to get right. In her TikTok, Morgan suggests the following steps:

  • Brain dump everything you’ve ever done
  • Look at the job description
  • Tell stories from your experience to match the job description
  • Add your day-to-day responsibilities to the role summary
  • Use the WHO format: What, How, and the Outcome of your actions or role
  • Think of what tasks you did and who it impacted
  • Organize your accomplishments with bullet points to make it easier to read

Match your experience to the job description. By tailoring your resume to the job description, you’ll highlight for recruiters why you’re a great fit. 

4. Include keywords specific to the job you’re applying for

Look at the job description and find the keywords recruiters are looking for. For example, check for “key responsibilities” or “required skills” and highlight how you have those skills.

5. Use action verbs to describe your accomplishments

Action verbs highlight the role you’ve played and how much you’ve contributed to a previous job. Note that action verbs are even better when they’re quantified. More on that in the next step. For now, here’s a list of action verbs to get you started brainstorming on your contributions.

  • Accomplished
  • Acquired
  • Administered
  • Analyzed
  • Applied
  • Arbitrated
  • Arranged
  • Assembled
  • Assessed
  • Assisted
  • Augmented
  • Audited
  • Balanced
  • Captured
  • Chaired
  • Collaborated
  • Compiled
  • Conceptualized
  • Coordinated
  • Crafted
  • Created
  • Cultivated
  • Customized
  • Demonstrated
  • Delivered
  • Demonstrated
  • Designed
  • Developed
  • Directed
  • Minimized
  • Discovered
  • Drafted
  • Economized
  • Earned
  • Engaged
  • Ensured
  • Established
  • Evaluated
  • Examined
  • Expanded
  • Explored
  • Fulfilled
  • Gathered
  • Generated
  • Grew
  • Guided
  • Helmed
  • Hired
  • Ideated
  • Improved
  • Increased
  • Initiated
  • Influenced
  • Investigated
  • Launched
  • Leveraged
  • Managed
  • Measured
  • Mediated
  • Negotiated
  • Optimized
  • Originated
  • Overhauled
  • Planned
  • Prepared
  • Prioritized
  • Produced
  • Prototyped
  • Realized
  • Recovered
  • Reduced
  • Refined
  • Renovated
  • Reached
  • Reviewed
  • Revamped
  • Saved
  • Secured
  • Settled
  • Shaped
  • Sketched
  • Spearheaded
  • Steered
  • Strengthened
  • Streamlined
  • Strategized
  • Supervised
  • Surveyed

6. Quantify your achievements with numbers

A general statement is good; a statement that quantifies your achievement with numbers is much better. Instead of, “I helped company X expand over the past 5 years” you could say, “I helped company X to expand operations in three states and double revenue twice in the past five years. Through targeted marketing outreach led by my team, we have expanded the customer base from 5,000 to 25,000 in the past two years.”

If you don’t have specific numbers, brainstorm what you can quantify. Have you created a certain number of annual financial reports? Helped drive growth? Helped the company save costs? Cutting costs by 10% while driving growth is a clear number. It takes some time to learn to quantify achievements, but it’s worth it to showcase your contributions!

7. Stick to the point

In another resume hacks Tiktok, Morgan of Resume Official points out that certain skills don’t make you stand out. Skills like communication and good time management are expected for any job. Here are five other things Morgan suggests removing from your resume:

  • A photo
  • Bulleted lists of expected skills (that’s where communication skills and time management get removed)
  • A statement of objective
  • Obscure titles (like “lead genius” or “regional manager of specialized products” that don’t mean anything to other organizations.)
  • Bullet points from the job description that don’t mean anything

For example, Morgan points out that a car salesman focusing on seat belts would seem strange because every car has seat belts. In other words, focus on what the recruiter wants but don’t give every possible skill you have. 

8. Avoid using jargon or acronyms

The recruiter may not be an expert in your field. If you leave the recruiter scratching their head, you’ve already lost them. Likewise, if they have to question whether the acronym you used is even real, it’s not doing your resume any favors. If the title or position is obscure, spell it out. And if you don’t know how to translate jargon, Google it. There’s usually a simpler way to express any complex topic.

9. Highlight promotions

How to structure job title changes at the same company is also important to make your resume stand out! Morgan of Resume Official suggests showcasing all the job titles or roles you’ve had within each company. 

If you didn’t hold one position for very long, you can stack all job titles under the company. However, if the jobs are very different or you help them for longer, you can make bullet points under each one highlighting your responsibilities and skills. 

10. Include relevant internships, volunteer or freelance work

Sometimes internships, volunteer work, or freelance work more closely align with the job you’re applying for. Don’t forget to showcase this experience. It can highlight other aspects of your skillset or showcase your diverse skill sets and adaptability in different workplace settings. 

11. Be transparent

If you’re been impacted by layoffs, it’s better to get it out there. Morgan of Resume Official points out that layoffs have become so common that they’ve lost their stigma. Showcasing all the job titles or roles you’ve had within each company can strengthen your resume, even if you were fired. 

Below each company, you can include a brief company description. If you lost that job, you can add a simple sentence, “Affected by layoffs.” That way, you’re transparent about the situation, but also don’t dwell on it unnecessarily. 

12. Include important links

If you can showcase your work, be sure to link to it. This can include company websites, personal portfolios, or other relevant work. You can also include contact information for anyone acting as a reference. 

13. Proofread for spelling and grammar errors

Proofreading for spelling and grammar errors is essential, as even a well-crafted resume that follows the other tips could get tossed out for spelling or grammar errors. At a minimum, use spell check with your word processor. Better yet, use Grammarly or another proofreading app with grammatical suggestions. 

14. Learn about ATS

ATS is an abbreviation for an applicant tracking system. ATS is software that enables companies to electronically handle recruiting and hiring. ATS can be implemented at every business size, from enterprises to small businesses. Depending on the needs of the organization, the ATS may be free and open-source software or paid specialized software. 

Top ATS systems include BambooHR, JazzHR, Greenhouse, Recruitee, Workable, and 

Zoho Recruit. 

15. Get free resume help


A majority of job seekers don’t need to pay for resume services, you just need the right resources! #resumetips #resumewriting #resumetemplates #jobseeker #jobsearch #jobhunt #work #careeradvice #greenscreen

♬ original sound – Morgan – Resume Writer 📝 ✨

You need help, and fortunately, Morgan of Resume Official has excellent suggestions for free resume help. Check out her Tiktok and follow these steps:

With these and other free resources, you should be able to get your resume in top shape and save time preparing it. 

Make your resume stand out

The basics remain essential: focus on clear formatting, customizing your resume to the job, and highlighting your experience with numbers and verbs. Fortunately, with free resources like EarnBetter and Morgan’s bullet points for resumes, making your resume stand out has never been easier. Keep it short, get to the point, and focus on the recruiter’s keywords to start landing your dream job. 

Meanwhile, if you need some extra cash while applying for jobs, find ways to make $500 a week, find out how to make $500 with DoorDash, or find side hustles for extra cash


Should you put references on a resume?

You shouldn’t put references on your resume unless an employer asks you to. However, you can include references in your cover letter or with a recommendation letter. 

What is the best font for a resume?

Any professional typeface is appropriate for a resume. Popular professional fonts for resumes include Arial, Cambria, Times New Roman, and Garamond. 

Is it OK to put available upon request on a resume?

No, it’s not worth putting available upon request for references. Instead, either list reference contacts in your cover letter or leave it out. The recruiter can always ask you for references. 

Is a 2-page resume ever OK?

Yes, a two-page resume is okay. In fact, in most cases, it’s the preferred length at this point. 

How many jobs are too many on a resume?

Usually, you’ll list two to four jobs on your resume. However, if you’ve held several titles at the same company, you can list those in the format Morgan suggests above. Remember you don’t have to put every job you’ve ever had on your resume. 

Sign Up
Sign Up

Fast, interest-free advances anytime

Get Instacash advances up to $500 for everyday expenses or life’s surprises. There’s no credit check, no monthly fee, and no interest.

Sign Up