What recruiters look in your resume at first glance?

Updated: 4 months ago
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Getting a good job these days is quite herculean because of the tough competition in the market. The most essential document that is needed to secure a job is none other than your resume. The CV or resume helps the recruiter to get a brief idea of an individual’s potential and caliber. A well-prepared resume gives you an edge over other candidates and increases your chances of getting hired for that particular job.  You can read my previous blog on " Great resume tips for graduates and college students". The resume is indubitably responsible for the first impression you have of the recruiter. Furthermore, the CV has the potential to either break or make your career. Hence, it is necessary that you make sure that your resume is up to the mark and has all the required details in order to secure the job of your dreams. This article discusses the various things that an employer is looking for resumes need in a candidate.

Hiring managers look for these things in your resume

Format of the resume:  The format of the resume is of utmost importance, and it must be in accordance with the requirements of the job or position you have applied for. You can get ideas for the format and design of your resume from the various templates which are easily available online. In addition to that, all the details in your CV must be in sequential order, and you must place your recent accomplishments first. Moreover, the dates of your employment history should be clearly mentioned in your resume so that the hiring manager can have an idea about the work experience you have.

Length of the resume:  A lengthy resume is of no use to the hiring managers because they do not have the time to go through everything. Moreover, your resume should not be longer than one or two pages. You should only incorporate relevant information such as responsibilities associated with your past jobs along with the special projects and incentives that you earned. Do not include trivial accomplishments as they make your CV lengthy. In addition to that, any information that is not related to the job should be excluded from your resume.

Profile summary:  A resume should also include a profile summary that tells the recruiter in a single glance about your skills and experiences. It’s a profile statement on your resume which in short describes your entire resume. It is generally placed at the top of your resume and gives a snapshot of your knowledge and skills.

Details of educational qualification: Educational qualifications should be listed in a consecutive manner. They should be mentioned either before or after your work experience in the curriculum vitae. The section should contain essential details like marks obtained in various fields, the name of the university, specialization in specific areas, degrees, and so on. A good resume only consists of details and educational qualifications that are relevant to the applied position or job. Thus, unimportant qualifications should not be incorporated into your CV.

Use of grammar and language: You must make sure that your resume is void of errors related to grammar and language. All your qualifications and accomplishments will be snubbed by the recruiter if your CV has grammatical and typographical errors in it. Such mistakes indicate that you are not cautious enough and have not put in the required efforts while preparing your resume. If you are not certain about the correctness of language in your resume, you must proofread it using an online tool or ask some friend to do it for you. Furthermore, if your resume has grammatical and language issues, it will not get a second glance from the hiring manager.

Preference of location:  While applying for a job, you must keep in mind that the location you include in your resume is of high importance to the recruiters. For example, a candidate may be a resident of Delhi but has completed his/her education from a different city. This factor acquaints the hiring manager with the willingness of the candidate to shift to the required location for the job. Therefore, it is quite essential to keep the location preferences in mind and prepare your CV accordingly in order to increase your chances of getting hired.

Academic and employment gaps:  Hiring managers often look for academic and employment gaps in your resume. They study and analyze the CV to see if it has gaps between educational qualifications and jobs. Most of the recruiters tend to probe the reasons for the intervals and breaks in your resume. Therefore, if your resume has such gaps, you must have a strong and rational reason to support your answer.

Work experience:  Work experience is of utmost importance to the recruiters. You must mention the similar companies you have worked for in the past as it undoubtedly increases your chances of getting selected. However, a candidate can be rejected based on the companies he/she has worked for because of specific differences or similarities. Therefore, you must go through and scrutinize company reviews and prepare your CV accordingly. For example, if you are applying for the position of hr, your hr resume should have a list of your earlier experiences which will give an idea about your earlier work.

Positions of accountability: Although it is essential that your CV is not lengthy, you must incorporate non-scholastic activities along with the various positions of accountability that you held in the past. In this way, the hiring manager gets to know how well you can handle a given responsibility at a time.  Hence, you must include accomplishments in various fields like music, art, sports, case studies, and so on. Candidates who lack job experience must put extra effort into this section as it acquaints the recruiter with your potential.

Past Internships:  It is very important for freshers and candidates with less experience to incorporate the internships they have done in the past. Hiring managers scrutinize the past internships to determine how diligent and conscientious the candidate is. On that account, it is imperative that you include all the internships which are relevant to the applied job as it can definitely make you stand out from the crowd.

Definite skills and abilities:  Hiring managers study your resume for the specific abilities and skills that you possess. It is because a large number of jobs or positions require a candidate to have a definite skill set and abilities which are necessary for the role you have applied for. Having definite skills and abilities not only makes you proficient but it increases the likelihood of your selection for the job. You must include only the relevant skills and abilities as your CV may be rejected by the recruiter if it has irrelevant information.


It is very much apparent that there is a serious dearth of good jobs in the market because of the continuously increasing competition. Nowadays, hiring managers are looking for the best candidates who have the potential and caliber to contribute to the company’s success and deal with stress and workload at the same time. The various points mentioned in this article will help you improve your resume and increase your chances of getting selected for your dream job.

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