This is the second part of an article about writing good and efficient resumes. If you haven't read the first part yet, go for it.
Employers hardly believe in anything by default. Listing your own competencies can be more of a problem than a solution. You should avoid clichés and self-proclaimed skills that are difficult to prove without evidence. This includes:
Instead you should bring the attention to the facts by choosing data, experiences and results that confirm the claims. The employer should be the one to draw the conclusions.
If you have abandoned some courses (or any training) along the way, they may show some lack of commitment or planning in your life. You should only mention such courses if you have a good explanation why you left them or if you plan to go back and continue the studies in the near future.
We usually have experiences that are not relevant anymore to our careers and plans. This is especially true for old or short experiences from the past that won’t contribute to our desired positions. The focus of the resume should be in the last 10 years or so. You can still mention older positions, but they don’t need lots of details and descriptions. Remember that an efficient resume has to be brief.
Keywords are important if your resume will be added to a database. So you have to ensure that you use words and expressions that correctly describe the work and are common in your professional field.
You also should pay attention to job postings because they contain keywords that you can use in your resume.
You should mention salary only when requested by the employer. This is another reason to always read carefully the job advert. The expected salary should always match the market, so you can look for salary surveys in your local area before submitting the resume.
Besides your name, you should definitely have your profession and location clearly visible in your resume. The employer or recruiter doesn’t want to waste time checking where you live or what position you are applying for. Having this information easily available on the top can demonstrate focus. You should avoid unneeded information such as age, religion, sex, marital status, number of children, etc.
This is usually optional, but if you want to include a picture (or if requested by the employer) make sure you pick one that shows how you currently look. Employers shouldn’t be surprised when they meet you in the interview. You should completely avoid pictures from vacations, parties or informal meetings. It should be enough to have a picture where you wear good clothes and have a smile on your face. For women, avoid heavy makeup and big earrings.