Resume Critique Checklist

Resumes normally get less than a 15-second glance at the first screening. If someone has asked you to review his resume and you want to help him ensure it gets read -- or want to know if your own is up to par -- be sure you can answer yes to the following questions:

First Impression

  • Does the resume look original and not based on a template?
  • Is the resume inviting to read, with clear sections and ample white space?
  • Does the design look professional rather than like a simple typing job?
  • Is a qualifications summary included so the reader immediately knows the applicant's value proposition?
  • Is the length and overall appearance of the resume appropriate given the career level and objective?

Appearance

  • Does the resume provide a visually pleasing, polished presentation?
  • Is the font appropriate for the career level and industry?
  • Are there design elements such as bullets, bolding and lines to guide readers' eyes through the document and highlight important content?
  • Is there a good balance between text and white space?
  • Are margins even on all sides?
  • Are design elements like spacing and font size used consistently throughout the document?
  • If the resume is longer than a page, does the second page contain a heading? Is the page break formatted correctly?

Resume Sections

  • Are all resume sections clearly labeled?
  • Are sections placed in the best order to highlight the applicant's strongest credentials?
  • Is the work history listed in reverse chronological order (most recent job first)?

Career Goal

  • Is the career objective included toward the top of the resume in a headline, objective or qualifications summary?
  • Is the resume targeted to a specific career goal and not trying to be a one-size-fits-all document?
  • If this is a resume for career change, is the current objective clearly stated, along with supporting details showing how past experience is relevant to the new goal?

Accomplishments

  • Does the resume include a solid listing of career accomplishments?
  • Are accomplishments quantified by using numbers, percentages, dollar amounts or other concrete measures of success?
  • Do accomplishment statements begin with strong, varied action verbs?
  • Are accomplishments separated from responsibilities?

Relevance

  • Is the information relevant to hiring managers' needs?
  • Does the resume's content support the career goal?
  • Is the resume keyword-rich, packed with appropriate buzzwords and industry acronyms?
  • Is applicable additional information, such as awards and affiliations, included, while personal information like marital status, age and nationality unrelated to the job target omitted?

Writing Style

  • Is the resume written in an implied first-person voice with personal pronouns, such as I, me and my, avoided?
  • Is the content flow logical and easy to understand?
  • Is the resume as perfect as possible, with no careless typos or spelling, grammar or syntax errors?
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Booted Hickam Spouse Wins New Contract Process

A military spouse owned small fitness business that was given the boot from Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam (JBPHH), Hawaii in late May after a contract was instead awarded to different company has won a request for a fresh contracting process. Rather than allow the original winner, non-military affiliated Boot Camp Hawaii, to move forward, officials with JBPHH ... Continue Reading

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    The National Military Family Association

    NMFA was organized in 1969 as the National Military Wives Association by a group of wives and widows seeking financial security for survivors of uniformed service personnel and retirees. From their efforts, the Survivor Benefit Plan came into being. In the ensuing years, NMFA has been in the vanguard of advocacy for improvements in the quality of military family life. The name of the organization was changed in 1984 to reflect the broad scope of its involvement. NMFA is a non-profit 501(c)(3) association. Learn more about The National Military Familiy Association
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