Recruiters spend an average of 6 seconds on each resume. Have you completed the following checklist to make sure you are catching their attention?

Create a Professional Email Account

If you don’t have a professional email address that includes mostly your name and little else, we insist that you to create one. Here is an article with great tips to set one up. Even though the author thinks a google address won’t cut it, our team still thinks gmail is the best domain to consider to avoid raising red flags on your application.

Resume Format

  1. Have you considered one of these templates (or do a google search for others you may like) that might give your resume a fresh look?
  2. Do you have all your contact information (including your LinkedIn – tech recruiters will not look at a resume sometimes without a LinkedIn!)?
  3. Is your tailored resume more than 2 pages? Cut down content to your most relevant experience if it is. The document should not be more than 2 pages.

Professional Summary

  1. Is your professional summary 2-4 sentences long and does it tell a cohesive story about your career path?
  2. Did you add your top achievements from your career (promotions, surpassing sales goals, managerial experience leading teams) and are your achievements quantifiable?
  3. See below examples for inspiration. As you progress through the certificate, your professional summary will change and should include more skills and achievements related to your certificate.
  4. Review examples and more resources for formatting a professional summary found here, Professional Summary and Bio – San Diego Workforce Partnership. As you progress through your career, your professional summary will change and should include more skills and achievements related to your certifications. 


  1. Do you have a skills section that highlights the most relevant hard and soft skills? If not, please include this at the top.


  1. Have you considered adding as much relevant experience from at least the last 10 years of your career?
  2. Have you highlighted as many achievements, promotions, leadership roles, and opportunities where you’ve taken initiative or solved a problem as much as possible? Was there a time where you asked for more responsibility, or proposed a better way to complete a work task, and can you add that to your resume?
  3. Do the number of bullet points under each job correspond to the length of time you were in the role (e.g. if you were in a role for 5 years and have 2 bullet points describing your experience, this is a red flag).
  4. Have you added numbers, dollars, percentages, or other quantifiable data to each experience bullet (Most recruiters will not consider a resume unless your achievements and responsibilities have been quantified)? Examples:
    1. Ensured the 10 full time staff was effectively trained and consistently using operations processes and systems correctly, reducing annual operating budgets by 10%.
    2. Within 3 years of being in the role, implemented new marketing strategy to increase sales by 67%.
    3. Recipient of annual department 2014 Spot Award for meeting departmental targets 3 months before deadline.
    4. Organized over 50 events with audiences up to 500 featuring top California entrepreneurs.
  5. Have you used the STAR format to build your bullets? Situation – what happened? Task – what responsibilities were you tasked with based on the challenge? Action – what did you do? Result – how did it end? Examples:
    1. Managed day-to-day activities of 7 key corporate accounts while successfully completing 9 client projects, each with a budget above $500,000, leading to a $2.1 million increase in new business for the company
  6. Have you leveraged EVERY piece of relevant experience towards your career (this is especially relevant for individuals with resume gaps)? Volunteer, internship, school projects, consulting gigs, informal work.

Helpful Tips:

  • If you had trouble adding quantifiable achievements to your experience section, start documenting these metrics in your current job (e.g. count the number of IT support tickets you resolve in a week).
  • If you are considering a career change into a very different role, speak to your manager on whether you can shadow a team at your company doing that work, or tackle a new project for 10-20% percent of your time, or do it as a volunteer project. It’s much easier to get experience in an existing job than to try to get a new one without experience on your resume.

Final Review

  1. Have you proofread your Resume for spelling and grammar errors?

Congratulations! You have a viable master resume to start applying to jobs. As you progress through your training program and acquire new skills, experience, and projects, add them to your resume to signal a career change or upgrade from your previous role. Treat this as a living document throughout your entire career.

Questions? Set up a meeting with your program specialist for a 1:1 consultation!