Resume Optimization

The anatomy of a Perfect Resume

The perfect resume can seem like the legendary Yeti: impossible to find. But there are ways you can optimize your resume to increase your chances of landing a job interview — and eventually getting a job offer.

For the best chance of success, use a combination of a chronological and functional resume format. List your skills and experience at the forefront, and then follow with your employment history. This is a great style of resume to showcase your relevant skills while also providing your work history and specific job duties.

This type of resume helps you advance past applicant tracking systems since you can have keywords at your top profile and skills section, as well as throughout your work history. This is the most common resume format and is preferred by most recruiters and human resource departments.

Before you begin

Whether you're drafting a chronological or a skills-based resume, there are some generic tips to keep in mind.


More than 75% of applicant reviewers will reject resumes with too many typos and grammatical mistakes.

The appropriate length

Generally, your resume should be 1–3 pages, depending on your experience level and the type of position. We typically recommend keeping your resume to two pages or less.

Easy to read

Even if you're not a writer, your resume must be easy for recruiters to read and understand. If a recruiter can't get an impression in 5–7 seconds, you could be missing out.

Mind the fonts

Font size and type can also improve (or decrease) readability. Times New Roman is outdated, so choose something more modern, like Arial or Helvetica, at a font size between 10 and 14.


Closing Notes

The following tips apply to all sections of your resume. Keep them in mind both while you're creating your resume and when you're finished with it.

Keep in clean

It can be tempting to go overboard, but a clean and simple design is best. There are certain job types that allow for more design creativity – such as a graphic designer or event planner – but if you’re an engineer or heading into business, you’ll want to stick with a less complex design.


Every aspect of your resume should be consistent, including tense, voice, spelling and font.


Use bold font strategically. Some places you might want to bold are your previous job titles or key accomplishments.

White space

A healthy amount of white space will help the reviewer scan your resume more easily. Too much can make it look barren, and too little is overwhelming.


Don't make up proper nouns. When you aren't sure if something should be capitalized, check an online dictionary.

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