Creating the Best Tech Resume: Make Your Technology Resume Stand Out to Recruiters
When looking for a new role, the first thing you need to do is create a resume. There’s a great advice and resume tips out there, but tech resumes have unique requirements and considerations you should keep in mind before sending it out to the world. In addition to IT staffing recruiters getting a general idea of your professional background, knowledge of various operating systems and technologies, and professional track record, they also need to glean what kind of technologies you specifically work with in your IT specialist resume. They want to see a proven track record of a mastery of information technology, and more specifically, what skills you have honed in the vast world of IT.
By the time you’re done reading this article, you’ll be in a better position to create a great tech resume that attracts hiring managers and recruiting agencies alike.
Write A Show-Stopping Personal Summary
In order to create a stand out tech resume from the very first line, you should start with a personal summary about yourself.
Writing a great personal summary will help tech recruiters and hiring managers get a good idea of who you are. It will make your resume stand out as well as put extremely important soft skills on display for them to consider right away.
What makes a good personal summary of your professional experience? Tell a story. While keeping it brief (the full story you can save for your cover letter), connect the dots for what led you to this point in your information technology career. A clear, concise, and engaging story will stand out to staffing agencies and they will be more likely to remember you and your story when they select who they want to move forward in the interview process.
It’s important not to skip this part. You’ll have plenty of time to talk about your hard skills throughout your resume and dive deeper into your previous experience in the tech industry later, so take this short section of your IT resume to market yourself!
To assist tech recruiters who have to evaluate many resumes of IT professionals every day, make it easy for them by formatting your resume in a way that is easy to consume quickly. By ensuring your resume format is clear and concise, you make it so hiring managers and tech recruiters will be able to quickly determine if you could be a suitable candidate for the role they are looking to fill.
Use Bullet Points, NOT Paragraphs In The Body Of Your Resume.
Using simple bullet points in your tech resume is crucial and may make your resume stand out from the others. Removing the additional clutter and keeping your resume summary in bullets makes your resume cleanly formatted.
- Easier to read: Bullet points break up large blocks of text, making your resume easier to consume and quickly evaluate.
- Emphasizes skills: You’ll be better able to highlight your skills and achievements in a clear and concise manner, helping tech recruiters and hiring managers understand what you have to offer them.
- Improves readability: With the additional white space, not only will your tech resume be easier to read, but it will likely be more visually appealing as well, helping draw more eyes to it.
- Organizes information: If you combine bullet points with sections, tech recruiters and hiring managers will more easily be able to find exactly what they are looking for on your resume.
Keep Your Styling Simple, And Focus On The Content Of Your Resume.
Most qualified applicants spend too much time focusing on style, and it’s a mistake. A functional resume format is better received by recruiters, as they are looking for the content of your resume, not the overall look and feel.
The whole world revolves around quality content. Your new potential employer will care more about your key skills, what programming languages you know, or your people skills. For example, if you are a specialist in the IT industry with a focus on software development, you want to make it as easy as possible for recruiters to see that you have a proven track record in software development. However, if this section is cluttered with wordy sentences, they may skip over where you provide this information, therefore making it less likely for your job application to be viewed.
They are reading your tech resume to learn about your previous professional experience, and a good resume will put that relevant experience front and center.
Use Formatting To Help Highlight Your Relevant Skills.
If you are submitting your resume for a posting that listed a job description, this is a great opportunity to use well-thought-out formatting to draw attention to your current technical skills.
You’ll want to list your hard skills in groups that tie directly back to the various parts of the job description you are interested in.
If for instance, the job description lists specific coding languages as part of the technical skills required for the position, it may make sense to create a special section on your tech resume that discusses your experience with those programming languages and the problems you’ve solved using them. There are many great resume examples out there, so do your research and find a resume template that organizes your content effectively in case you get stuck. You can also hire a certified professional resume writer to assist you!
What Needs To Be On Your Tech Resume
No tech resume tips article would be complete without discussing what you should have on it. Knowing what specific skills or experience on any resume can be a tall order, and as the information technology world is so vast, this can be difficult to determine.
Once you’ve gotten the attention of a hiring manager or tech recruiter with a well-formatted, easy-to-scan resume, your next task is to be sure that you are really shining a spotlight on your technical skills, professional experience, and problem-solving. Staffing agencies want to see an it specialist resume that gets to the meat and potatoes of it: they want to see all coding languages you know, computer systems you are familiar with, computer skills you’ve honed, and any information technology occupations you’ve had in the past.
For example, let’s say you’re applying for a job as a software developer. You may be an IT professional with a focus in application development and software development, which is directly related to the job. But let’s say you’ve had past experience as a cybersecurity professional and project management. While it may not be directly related to the job description for the role you’re applying for, it’s good to show that you have a wide breadth of knowledge in the information technology field.
In addition to featuring your tech skills, you should also leave some room to discuss your soft skills as well. A prospective employer will be more inclined to hire you for a tech position with their organization if you are able to display excellent communication and team-building skills.
A Word On Personal Projects
Personal projects are often not included on many tech resumes, but they should be. Personal projects can display the extra effort you put into learning new skills outside of work, which is something top talent almost always does.
When a staffing agency reads your resume and sees personal projects that are relevant to the position they are tasked to fill, it tells them that you not only know your stuff, but that you are passionate about what you do. An employee who is passionate about their role is an employee who is dedicated to their job, and showing your potential employers that you love what you do makes you a top candidate.
Interesting personal projects can also help get a recruiter’s attention and may help qualify you for a position even if you wouldn’t typically be considered for that exact role otherwise. For example, if you are a developer applying for a job in back-end development, you may have made a widget or a site that had a good design. The role may involve some UX work, so showing them that you are capable of these additional IT skill sets could be a major plus for their company compared to the other candidates they are considering.
Backing Up Your Claim With Evidence
If you are considering a career change, have recently graduated, or are looking for an entry level tech job that you may not have the previous professional experience to normally qualify for, a personal project can help demonstrate your key skills as they apply to the job posting you’re being considered for.
Utilizing a GitHub account to show your code is a great way to establish legitimacy when you are starting out your IT career, as it shows a working knowledge of not only coding, but sharing and collaborating in the IT world. Remember that background checks can’t show that you know your stuff, so be sure to provide that for them so they can see that you are right for the role.
It’s important for your resume to include information on how a hiring manager or recruiter can find your professional profiles.
Those profiles will probably include additional content about your skills that tech employers want to see.
Relevant social media profiles can include LinkedIn profiles, GitHub accounts, CodePen Profiles, or online portfolios. Many of these are password protected, so be sure to include any passwords for recruiters or human resources managers so they can see your talent!
What Are Recruiters Looking For?
High demand jobs in the tech industry will often have a competitive hiring process.
Recruiters will care most about your relevant skills as they apply to the job posting and hiring process. That means your resume should include sections for:
- Technical Skills
- Soft Skills
- Quantifiable Results
- Any Relevant Education or Certifications
Keep Your Resume Concise
Your resume should only be one page. Resumes that are two pages long (or more) will almost always benefit from being more concise and less wordy if possible.
Recruiters and potential employers alike will be looking at dozens, if not hundreds, of resumes when they are filling job openings. If your resume is short and only includes what is relevant to specific job postings, it will help them zero in on what matters and why you might be a good fit.
Use The Right Keywords
Much like common internet searches, most employers and recruiters will use some form of search to help them locate the best candidates for the best jobs.
Job seekers should be sure to include relevant keywords in their profiles or resumes so that they are able to appear high in the search results for a given job. Refer to the job responsibilities listed in the job ad and ensure that these keywords are used.
For instance, software developers or software engineers may want to be sure to include the names of tools they have experience with. If a company uses those tools in their workflow, they may search for a software engineer that has them listed on their resume as something they already know.
Always Edit Your Resume
For tech jobs, it’s important that your resume is current and reflects your recent experience or newly learned skills.
When a hiring manager reviews your resume, they want to see what you’ve been doing recently. Your resume should give them a good idea of where you are right now in your career path, as opposed to a few years ago, which is often the case with outdated resumes.
Final Thoughts & Tips On Creating A Great Technology Resume
Tech employees work in a highly competitive field. The tech industry is always changing, and your tech skills need to evolve with it.
Focus on previous tech jobs you’ve had, companies in the tech industry you’ve worked for, tools you’ve used, and team building where it applies.
Make sure your resume is focused on being specific to finding a tech job, and remove anything that doesn’t apply to those specific roles.
If you know what company you are being considered for, adjust your resume to align with that specific job or career path.
Writing a resume doesn’t have to be a full time job in and of itself, but if you are interested in advancing your career, be sure that you give it attention regularly.