Skip to main content

Thinking of applying for a tech position? Whether the job is in a tech-focused or tech-adjacent sector, your resume will play an important role as you go through the application process. You’ll need to relate your background and skills to the position all in a single page. No pressure, right? Fortunately, there are some tips you can follow to help your resume stand out and shine in your favor.

Update According to the Job Description

Start by reading through the entire job description thoroughly. Even if you plan to apply for the same position with multiple companies, make sure that you have an understanding of what each position is looking for. You may need to adjust your resume accordingly, since some employers may place greater emphasis on experience or be on the lookout for particular skills.

Start by Showing Off Your Skills

Chances are high that hiring managers will be reviewing a lot of resumes. You may only have a few seconds to gain their attention. List technology skills on your resume first. This might include experience that you have with coding and programming, IT, or cybersecurity. Don’t forget to mention soft skills you have like verbal communication, critical thinking, problem solving, and time management. Because skills-based hiring is on the rise, you’ll want to make sure these competencies are not overlooked.

Talk About Professional Experience

Try to make this section as relevant as possible to the job that you’re applying for. Not all past work experience is going to be of value to potential new employers, so think about what they might be looking for. If you haven’t worked in a tech-focused role before, include internships, school projects, extracurriculars, or personal projects that show you know how to apply the skills you listed toward the top in real-world situations. Use bullet points to describe the work you performed and job responsibilities you were accountable for.

Back Up Your Accomplishments

This is especially important if you don’t have relevant past job experience. You’ll need to concisely describe how personal or school projects and extracurriculars showcase your skills. Quantify and qualify these experiences through bullet points. For example, say that you took part in a hackathon. Briefly elaborate on what the project entailed, the skills you used, and the results of the event.

Include Certifications

Remember what we said about skills-based hiring? Even if the job you’re applying for doesn’t require certifications, make sure to include them if you have them. This is especially important if you don’t have a tech-focused degree and are looking to break into the industry. Tech certifications are verified proof of your skills, so they will bring you a lot of value with recruiters. There are many online and in-person opportunities to gain job training certifications, including right here in Buffalo.

Mention What You’re Learning

You don’t have to be a master of a particular skill to include it. If you’re working towards a new skill, add it in and mention that you are actively learning. This is a great solution for those who haven’t finished their degree/certification or for those who are applying for an internship.

Don’t Go Over One Page

Resumes are meant to be a short and sweet record of your experience, accomplishments, and skills. It may be tempting to expand your resume onto a second page, but you should try to resist the urge. It’s likely that employers won’t venture past page one anyways. If you are considering putting experience onto a second page, it’s likely not relevant. Save your time by sticking to key information that best aligns with the job description.

Edit, Edit, Edit

Once you’ve written and formatted your resume, read through it for spelling, grammar, and clarity. After you’ve read it through, ask a friend, family member, or mentor to proofread for you in case there are any errors you’ve missed. You only get one chance to make a first impression, so make it count.