Resume Tips: 15 minute resumé makeover- Writing better bullet points

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Once your resumé is ready to pass the “15 Second Test,” the next step is to write excellent bullet points.

Bullet points, usually listed under each specific heading, make up the bulk of a resumé.

What & How statements

One method to writing a great bullet point is to think about a task you have done at a current or past job, and what skills that task requires.

For example, “Communicated important information to a 10-person team,” is just an okay bullet point.

To make a better bullet point, elaborate on how you did this: “Communicated important information to a 10-person team by initiating a weekly newsletter and organizing a bi-weekly mandatory meeting.”

Quality statements

A quality statement tells employers what kind of worker you are: creative, outgoing, analytical or intellectual.  Back up your quality statements by providing an example that demonstrates the quality you have.  For example, “Consistently creative in problem solving and team brainstorming exercises.”

List the most impressive and important bullet points first and don’t give information that is not necessary. A one page resumé with relevant information and experiences is more likely to be read than a two page resumé with unnecessary information.

Achievement statements

Statements containing measurable achievements which answer questions such as How much? or How many? are the most powerful statements you can put on your resumé.

They can back up What & How and Quality statements by providing evidence to potential employers that you’re capable of doing what they need you to in a similar environment.  For example, “Raised $6000 for a charity event by successfully advertising the event and maintaining consistent communication with all team members.”

To generate achievement statements, think about an accomplishment you’ve had at a past or current job or volunteer position.  For example, your contribution to a project that impacted the department’s or company’s bottom line, or that you consistently increased your sales every month for a number of months.

TalentEggTalentEgg Tip: Once you start working or volunteering, maintain a list of all of your achievements in a notebook or Word document. Include as many details as possible in your notes, including the date and answers to questions like How much? or How many?

When you update your resumé, you can easily find all the details you need about each of your achievements and won’t forget about the ones that don’t make it on your resumé for one particular job application or another.

Check out the other articles in the 15 minute resumé makeovers series: Basic aesthetics and Nailing the important sections

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