Looking for Job openings in Nigeria? You need to stand out – and your resume needs to be on point. We’re sharing our favorite tips on how to write the best resume here.
“First impressions are the most lasting.”
And, your resume is the first meeting between you and the prospective employers for Nigeria jobs.
Did you know that the average time spent by recruiters looking at a resume is between 5 and 7 seconds?
We’re not kidding.
Since most companies receive hundreds of resumes for a single vacancy, the recruiters don’t really have the time to read each resume in detail.
So essentially, resumes serve as an eliminating process for them.
This is the reason why your resumes need to be precise, interesting, structured and neat. The moment recruiters look at long, boring and unorganized resumes, it instantly puts them off.
Resumes tell the employer a lot of things about you:
An ideal resume should tell the employers a great deal about you – where you’ve been, where you are at and where you’re headed.
But that must be told quickly and clearly because you’ve only a few seconds to convince the employer.
In short, your resume should convey that you’re the best candidate for the job.
The main purpose of a resume is to get called for an interview:
The main purpose of sending resumes to prospective employers is to get called for an interview.
After going through your resume, the employer should want to get to know you better and see how you can fit in the role.
With a great resume in hand, you can potentially be called for an interview by a majority of employers that you sent your resume to.
So, always use it to your advantage.
Some Resume Tips for Nigeria Jobs
Now that you know why resumes are so crucial, let’s take a look at some tips to get a professional-looking and sounding resume.
Customize Your Resume for the Post Advertised
It’s very common to take up a number of jobs before you actually find the one that you wanted.
So you may have gained a lot of experience in a variety of fields, but that doesn’t mean that you should include each and every detail about them on your resume.
The best thing to do is read the job requirements and customize your resume accordingly.
This way the employer also knows that you’ve taken the time to read and understand what they expect from prospective employees.
Think of your resume as a marketing document that needs to highlight your skills, knowledge, accomplishments and strengths that are most relevant to the job you intend to apply for.
Since customizing each resume requires a lot of time, what you can do is keep a master list of all the jobs that you’ve had, along with their job titles and roles and responsibilities.
Then, all you need to do is copy-paste the most relevant details when you’re drafting resumes for the intended jobs.
Put the Best Things ‘Above the Fold’
“Above the fold” refers to the front half of a folded newspaper or the top part of a website before you scroll down.
In resumes, it means that your best accomplishments and experiences should be visible within the top third of your resume. This top section is what the recruiters will be looking at first.
So maybe you can start your resume with a summary of your experiences or the most relevant skills.
Truth About the Objective Statement
An objective statement is valid for those individuals who are changing their careers completely. They are the ones who need to explain why their experience doesn’t match the position that they are applying to.
If you’re not changing careers, then you can safely remove the objective statement, as it doesn’t really serve the purpose.
Remember you need to make your resume as crisp and concise as possible.
Reverse Chronological Order is the Way to Go
There are plenty of different ways to structure the details on your resume, but the reverse chronological order is the best.
This means that you need to list out your most recent experience first, followed by the one before that and so on.
This is true for your educational qualifications as well.
Keep Your Resume Short and Simple
Often people are not sure how long the resume should be – one page, two pages or more?
This is a highly debatable topic and there are many opinions, but keeping it short and simple should be your aim.
Try and limit your resume to a single page only.
If you have important and relevant credentials, training and experience that can make a difference in you getting called for an interview, only then consider adding another page.
Presentation – Layout, Format, and Style
Know that fancy font, layout, and other special effects are a put off for most employers. Unless you’re applying for a creative position, fancy stuff won’t really make a difference.
Stick to the traditional and most accepted fonts like Arial, Verdana or Times New Roman. The font size can be between 9 and 12 depending on the font.
Also, use the normal black color font and not any other color.
If you want your name and maybe your job titles and companies highlighted, then you can use a different font size, but try to be as consistent as possible.
Don’t go overboard with italics, underlining and bold. Keep it to a bare minimum and only where necessary.
Avoid Typos and Grammatical Errors
A silly spelling mistake or a grammatical error on your resume is enough for the recruiters to reject you at that point.
Your resume is a very important document and if you’re unable to get even that right, then you’re sending the wrong message to the prospective employers.
The employers will read between the lines and draw their own conclusions – “This person is careless.” or “This person can’t write an important document.”
So always check, double-check and check once again before you send out a resume.
You can ask someone else to read your resume. This way if there’s something that’s not very clear or any other mistakes, you can make the changes before emailing your resume.
Most Crucial Part…
One of the most important things that you should remember while writing a resume is to never lie about anything – dates, job titles, companies or experience.
These days, most employers do a complete background check before hiring anyone. If they find out that you’ve lied, you can forget about them employing you.
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