On average, I look at 5-6 resumes every week and give feedback. One thing I’ve noticed a lot of people do is overusing bullet points, starting from the summary section to professional experience and achievements.
For the reader, a resume with too many bullet points will look like one long grocery list.
It makes for unengaging reading. It feels like a thoughtless list of the tasks you’ve completed — kind of like you were told to do some things and you ticked them off a career checklist.
That’s not the impression you want to make. You want your resume to convey that you’ve taken responsibility, owned deliverables, and achieved things. However small or insignificant you think this might be.
Instead, try doing this: Organize your information in a visually appealing way. Use a combination of headings, paragraphs, and bullet points. In the experience sections, use a heading that highlights your designation, the name of the organisation, and the period in which you were employed in the company. And then, in a paragraph of about 2-3 lines, speak about the role and what you were responsible for. This would help the reader see what you owned in that role.
Here’s an example:
Copyeditor, Xipro Technologies, Mar 2019 – Present
I was responsible for ensuring that all marketing content at Xipro was accurate, readable, and shareable. This included long-form content such as whitepapers and annual reports as well as short-form ones like email copy or social media updates.
Proofread 2 documents every day.
Published 3 blog posts per week.
Maintained a style guide and ensured all the documents followed the style guide.
What we’re doing here is visually breaking it down so it doesn’t seem like one long list of random things you did in that role. It separates responsibilities from tasks in a very subtle manner, which adds more clarity as well as character to your resume.
When I say ‘design your CV’, people think they need a graphic designer or rush to Canva. In fact, simple typography and mix-and-match of forms on MS Word can make a world of difference.