13 Things That Stand Out on a Resume

An applicant's resume tells their story. As such it should be easy to follow their timeline. If there are holes in that chronology or there are multiple overlapping projects, I'm going to need some explanation.
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The following answers are provided by the Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invite-only organization comprised of the world's most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched StartupCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.

A. A Timeline

2014-12-05-AlexKopicki.pngAn applicant's resume tells their story. As such it should be easy to follow their timeline. If there are holes in that chronology or there are multiple overlapping projects, I'm going to need some explanation. - Alex Kopicki, Kinglet

A. Typos

2014-12-05-JaredFeldman.pngGlaring errors with spelling, grammar and formatting jump out right away. Even with positions that require no writing or editing, an error-filled resume indicates a lack of attention to detail that's an immediate red flag. - Jared Feldman, Mashwork

A. Bullet-Pointed Accomplishments

2014-12-05-BrittanyHodak.jpgResumes from candidates who drone on and on with marketing speak make my eyes glaze over. I look for resumes with concrete, bullet-pointed examples of accomplishments from previous jobs. For me, a simple: "Implemented a system to reduce shipping costs by 20 percent" beats: "Strategically involved in the expert design and implementation of innovative product-procurement logistics systems" every time. - Brittany Hodak, ZinePak

A. Job Duration

2014-12-05-SimonCasuto.pngI'm always interested in how long a candidate was at his or her previous jobs. If someone has worked in the same industry for years, but only in short bursts at different companies, they may be bringing a negative attitude or some other issue to the table. I prefer to see stable relationships with previous employers. - Simon Casuto, eLearning Mind

A. Their First Job

2014-12-05-RobertCastaneda.jpgI look for someone's first job. Specifically, did they work a job in retail, customer service or some other role where they had to serve others at the same time as they were studying? This shows that they have humility and the attitude to start from the bottom, that they can manage their time and multitask, and that they appreciate the value of work. - Robert Castaneda, ServiceRocket

A. Revelvant Keywords

2014-12-05-LeighRowan.pngWhen reviewing a potential hire's resume, I quickly scan their resume for keywords and insights that make me understand how this candidate would fare at my company. What they've done before? Are they a cultural fit? etc. Does this candidate "get" me and my business? Customized resumes give me deeper understanding and lead to more candidate call backs, interviews, and eventual hires. - Leigh Rowan, Growan Co

A. Specific Numbers

2014-12-05-Beck_Bamberger.jpgI don't want to read that you, "accelerated growth for your department" or "managed team members' multiple projects." I want to see numbers that jump from the page, such as "Grew department 37 percent within 24 months" and "managed 14 associate editors and 4 million dollars of ad spend." Words are open to interpretation, but numbers can be verified. - Beck Bamberger, BAM Communications

A. International Experience

2014-12-05-BenLyon.pngWe serve customers in emerging markets, so experience abroad is a big plus. If you have international experience, then you've likely had to overcome cultural and language barriers to get by. It takes a healthy dose of creativity and confidence to do that, which signals that you're likely able to adapt to tricky situations on the fly. - Ben Lyon, Kopo Kopo, Inc.

A. Attention to Detail

2014-12-05-JoshSprague.pngRegardless of the role that we're hiring for, make sure your resume is perfect. This is your time to shine! If you lack experience, it might be ok if we see that you can structure a sentence and spell properly. If you bounced between jobs but we see that there was a potential growth curve in there, that may be OK too if your resume is well designed. Are you the perfect candidate, then spell-check! - Josh Sprague, Orange Mud

A. Relevant Experience

2014-12-05-DawnStrobel.pngNothing is more frustrating than having a candidate submit their resume only to leave me to decipher what qualifies them to be an employee at my company. I always quickly scan to pick out the experience that pertains. Make sure your experience is relevant and where it is, make it stand out! - Dawn Strobel,Go By Truck

A. Most Recent Accomplishments

2014-12-05-ChristopherAtegeka.pngI always scan for the very latest accomplishment the candidate has, whether it's an academic milestone, a significant achievement in the professional world, or a powerful life experience. All lessons learned and experienced gained will still be relatively fresh with the candidate, and anything that they may bring to the table will inevitably be influenced by their most recent accomplishments. - Christopher Ategeka,Rides for Lives

A. Personality

2014-12-05-KristopherJones.pngResumes that simply list skills are boring and do not stand out. The first thing I look for on a candidates resume is personality. Personality is communicated through community involvement, awards and leadership. Ninety-Five percent of the time, if the skills are there and I don't see personality, I pass on the candidate. - Kristopher Jones, LSEO.com

A. Growth

2014-12-05-AmitKumar.pngDepending on the role, I will often look at a candidate's resume to see demonstrable signs of growth at previous companies. Specifically, if the scope of their responsibilities or job function grew over time. Promotions are only one example of this. I've found that this is one of the most effective ways of sussing out whether or not they were a high performer in the past. - Amit Kumar, CardSpring

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