5 Tips for Writing an IT Resume
Posted June 12, 2019, by Elesha
How does your IT resume measure up? If your phone isn't exactly running hot with interview requests you need to make some changes.
Check out these 5 tips for writing an IT resume to get you noticed and land you that interview.
Make Your IT Resume Easy To Speed Read
Every hiring manager has approx 2 hours to review and understand your IT resume.
Hiring managers who are inundated with hundreds of submissions for each job literally skim read each application for about 10 seconds.
You can bet yours will be destined straight for the 'no' pile if all they see is a big wall of text.
Make their precious seconds of attention count and highlight the key points of your IT resume in an easy to read format that is clear and visually appealing.
Create categories using headlines including work history, education, and skills. Use a no-nonsense font set at 10-12 points and plenty of white space to separate categories.
Use bullet points to summarise the most important information - bullet points are a skim reader’s best friend! Aligning content to the left will also make it more skimmable.
Pro tip - The best bullet points in a resume for tech jobs will match the keywords listed in the job add. More on keywords below!
Skip The IT Jargon
The only place for really technical language in your IT resume is the section listing your technical skills.
Try to keep the rest of the content as jargon-free as possible, not everyone reading your CV will be familiar with IT acronyms or terms specific to your previous employer.
In the skills section, list your technical competencies with software programs and programming languages specifically related to the job. Don’t forget to list soft skills like communication, flexibility, and problem solving too.
Your secret resume weapon? Keywords.
Knowing how to strategically use keywords in your IT resume will hugely increase the chances of getting called up for the interview.
Take a look at the job listing you’re applying for and mine it for keywords. These are the words/phrases used to describe the ideal candidate and their experience.
For example, the employer may be looking for the following things -
- Detailed knowledge of technical infrastructure from desktop to firewall
- An understanding of backup systems and software
- Apple Mac support experience
Mirror these keywords and phrases in the cover letter and highlight them in bullet point format in your CV. You’ll make it easy for the recruiter to see your experience matches the requirements.
Many recruitment agencies actually rely on computer software, known as an Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS), to automatically scan resumes. If your IT resume doesn’t contain enough of the keywords in the job listing, it may be automatically disqualified.
Highlight Accomplishments And Results (Not A Big List Of Daily Tasks)
An impressive IT resume showcases your accomplishments and results, not a long list of daily tasks.
Duties and responsibilities are pretty much the same for all employees in a similar role - it’s your achievements and results will make you stand out from the crowd.
Hone in on 4-5 specific accomplishments and where you can, use numbers to show the impact of your achievements. Think about times your project came in under budget, before the deadline or you helped streamline an existing process.
Help the employer or recruiter to see your value and envision the impact you’ll have on the team. Leave them thinking “We HAVE to interview this superstar!”
Don’t Stress About Fitting It On A Single Page (But Keep It Max 2 Pages)
There’s a lot of advice out there about exactly how long your resume should be - with many saying anything more than 1 page is a CV crime. The truth? You’re not likely to have your IT resume exiled just because it’s two pages long.
Keep it short and to the point; you don’t need to list every role you’ve ever had. If you're just starting out or relatively new to the field (5 years or less), then one page is likely to suffice. However, more senior roles or IT professionals with 10+ years behind them may find that their CV will creep over to two pages, and that's ok. If you've got an impressive list of professional achievements, then sure, add it in, however, just ensure that everything you include is relevant to the role you're applying for.
Skip the ‘personal interests’ blurb unless they directly relate to the role you’re applying for. The recruiter doesn’t need to know you love Game Of Thrones and make an awesome green Thai curry.
Check Spelling And Grammar
There are no excuses for submitting your resume and cover letter with spelling and grammatical errors. Have a friend or your career coach proofread it too or run a check through Grammarly - a super helpful online grammar and spell checking tool.
There you have it, 5 tips to help your IT resume stand out from the crowd! We've got some super helpful IT resume and cover letter templates to get you started or take it to the next level with our range of premium templates.