The Golden Verbs Every Resume Must Have

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Whether you realize it or not, your resume is the first window of opportunity you have to make a great first impression on a potential employer. According to a recent study by Ladders, recruiters spend just 7.4 seconds on a resume before deciding whether they should call the candidate in for an interview or toss the resume to the pile of rejected ones sitting on their desks.

Employers, especially big corporations, receive large volumes of applications from interested candidates when they announce a job vacancy. Since they do not have the luxury of time to go through each one in detail, they tend to quickly scan through resumes to decide which candidates are worth looking into. So if you want to be offered an interview, you have got to make sure that your resume really stands out.

What Exactly Do Recruiters Look For In A Resume?

We have all received advice—whether it is from friends, career counselors in university, or recruiting experts—on how to write a resume. They taught us to use clear formatting, include a concise objective, add in educational background, highlight accomplishments, and keep the entire document within two pages among other things. While these tips are certainly useful and practical, there is one important piece of information they all tend to miss.

Using power-packed verbs to describe your work experience and accomplishments are just as important as, if not more important than the other must-dos when putting together a resume. Since recruiters spend only about 7 seconds scanning through the document, the words that you include can either help you stand out or blow you out of the water, and there is no better way to keep your recruiter’s eyes glued to your resume than by using action verbs dripping with determination and confidence.

▪ How to nail a video job interview: Tips and commonly asked questions

▪ CV dos and don’ts—10 tips to update your resume

What Are The Golden Verbs Your Resume Must Have?

When recruiters gloss over resumes, they see phrases beginning with the following verbs over and over again to the point where those verbs eventually lose their meanings:

  • Assisted

  • Handled

  • Led

  • Managed

  • Responsible for

  • Worked

These verbs are, more often than not, too vague and fail to accurately describe work experience and accomplishments.

▪ How to write a Resume Summary (Sample included)?

▪ The 6 resume writing tips you need to hear now

Here are a few strong and compelling action verbs with specific meanings that you can use instead to impress recruiters:

  • Accelerated

  • Administered

  • Advanced

  • Controlled

  • Counseled

  • Developed

  • Devised

  • Directed

  • Enforced

  • Executed

  • Expanded

  • Formulated

  • Implemented

  • Initiated

  • Launched

  • Maximized

  • Mentored

  • Operated

  • Pioneered

  • Produced

  • Programmed

  • Spearheaded

  • Trained

  • Transformed

You know better than any anyone about your work experience and accomplishments, which is why it is important to convey your worth using the right language so that recruiters know it too.

As a next step, go over your resume and reword it so it packs a punch. Good luck on your job hunt!

 

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