On the Purpose of a Resume

Everyone applying for a new position faces the question of how to present themselves by preparing a CV or resume. This article discusses the purpose of a resume and its key elements. We will also explore what not to include in a resume and how to prepare for interviews.

What is the purpose of your resume?

The first impression. It is crucial. Your resume determines whether you will be invited for an interview. Recruiters receive hundreds of resumes. Why should they choose yours?

A resume is not meant to narrate your life story but to create interest so that people will want to learn more about you. Therefore, avoid including excessive detail - you’ll have the chance to share more during the interview.

When preparing a resume, consider that you are addressing people accustomed to reading by scanning—they focus only on the main points and are drawn to numbers and percentages, overlooking verbose explanations. You have less than 8 seconds before the recruiter moves on to the next resume. This is not just the nature of resume review - research shows that our focus on new information without distraction lasts about 8 seconds.

What should you do?

Be distinctive. Express your true intentions. Stand out from the crowd.

Aim for one page. If you have many years of experience, a maximum of two pages is permissible, but only if you have that much relevant information. Avoid confining yourself to conventional formats like the EU CV.

Unless your resume must pass through an Applicant Tracking System (ATS) where including key words related to the position is crucial, avoid objective summaries and verbose statements—they generally go unread and fail to impress.
Be concise in your descriptions. Every word should be carefully considered and placed accurately.

Use short sentences and bullet points. Focus on key achievements, not descriptions. Do not mention mundane skills like sending emails—such activities are expected and do not merit mention.

Achievements, achievements, achievements.

Highlight quantitative measures of your success — these matter. Avoid lengthy descriptions of situations, problems, and solutions. Achievements speak for themselves. Your descriptions should also reflect a positive attitude, motivation, teamwork, and work ethic. Emphasize the added value you bring and why investing in you is worthwhile. Clearly demonstrate how you are ideally suited for the specific position.

Update your LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and all other social accounts. If your accounts are career-relevant, include them in your resume. It’s important to begin building your professional presence on social media. Also, avoid uploading photos that you are not prepared to discuss during an interview. Worse still, such photos might prevent you from being invited at all.

Use visualizations wisely — 90% of the information that reaches the brain is visual and processed much faster than text. Employ graphics and visualizations, but do not overdo it; the goal is to clarify, not to colorize.

Creative resumes that include web design or infographics are increasingly relevant. They can reflect your personal style and help you stand out from other applicants. However, companies with a very conservative culture may not appreciate creative resumes. It’s up to you to decide which resume style to use.
Creating a good resume is a challenge. To ensure its quality, consider entrusting it to professionals. At ExcluCV, we would be happy to contribute to your success! Impress employers! Don’t just get chosen—be the chooser!
Up Next: Learn what to avoid in the content of your resume. Click here to read more :)