Time and again, people have argued over the importance of the Resume in the eyes of the admission committee. While some consider the RESUME to be an integral part of the application others argue for it to be ‘just another piece of the puzzle’. Although different groups might have different notions, your RESUME is KEY a part of the application.
It entails your life experiences and your learning’s on a one page document, and it is this document that gives the admission committee a first impression of your profile and talks about you even before the committee member decides to glance through your essays and LOR. It is crisp and one of the most effective ways to get the attention of the admission committee member and make him see your positive points.
HOW IS AN MBA RESUME DIFFERENT FROM A MAINSTREAM JOB RESUME?
While most MBA aspirants are technically going to B-schools with work-experience, they often fumble with effective content to add to their resume. With one page to your disposal, the task can be challenging but if done effectively; it can do wonders. Aspirants have been known to confuse the importance of a RESUME for B-school with their professional one.
The RESUME might have fetched them a job in an ultra-competitive job market, but can often be turned down by the ad-com members.
WHY SO? The answer is pretty simple.
Most professional RESUMES focus mainly on job-relevant skills, for example, for a software engineer, the RESUME talks about the programming languages he knows, the projects he did, the technical issues he has handled and so on and so forth.
The above mentioned information might be relevant for a job but for a B-school admission committee member it does very less. You leave out the extra – curricular, the skills you posses and how you wish to grow and expand. As a result they move on to other resumes without even digging deep into your profound skill set and work experience and term you as a technical jargon.
Do you now see, why your time-tested RESUME that got you your job, no longer holds ground in an MBA application?
To help you better, we have created an “MBA RESUME Guide”, which talks at length about how to not only work on optimizing your content but also on how to make your RESUME stand out. It is imperative, that you realise, that focusing only the content does not make your RESUME different.
The admission committee goes through hundreds of applicant resumes per day, hence it is essential that your presentation is top notch as well. The resume should be to the point, easily scan able and should give a good understanding of your work profile in a few seconds.
We have curated a set of 10 steps that will take your Resume from average to brilliant. The road to reach your goals is mentioned below.
1. CREATE A CLEAN AND EFFECTIVE FORMAT
- Most of the B-Schools recommend a one-page This helps ad-coms go through all the applications quickly.
- Use a formal tone. Add no design, watermark or any background as it might distract the reader.
2. STANDARDIZED FONT TYPE & SIZE
- Readability plays a vital role in your resume. Stick to standard font types and don’t try to mix and match fonts.
- Set standard sizes and style for Header, section head and body of your resume. Use BOLD and ITALICS to make it easy for fast reading.
3. KEEP ONLY IMPORTANT/RELEVANT CONTACT DETAILS
- Mention only your active Phone number and Email-ID.
- Keep a formal Email-ID, unlike ones such as “email@example.com”. it could hamper your impression as it may show as a sign of lack of seriousness
4. DROP THE OBJECTIVE STATEMENT
- Writing objective is like stating your purpose of submitting the Resume. It is very clear to the ad-com the reason why you are submitting the Resume and that you must have met the standards mentioned.
- Instead, highlight the necessary/relevant skills (in bullets) that can give you an advantage over other applicants.
5. OPTIMIZE BULLET POINTS
- The most effective part of the resume. Make sure you highlight 3-4 bullets after every subheading/heading
- Short, simple and to the point. Also, try to stay in 1 line per bullet, max 2 lines.
- Keep consistency in alignment as well as style, size, and font of the bullets.
- Always start each bullet with Action words.
6. HIGHLIGHT WORK EXPERIENCE EFFECTIVELY
- Mention the Designation, Name of the Company, The Time Span and the Location of your workplace all in one line.
- Avoid common bullets, and mention the skills you used as well as the ones you learnt while working,
- Keep this section in chronological order, with the most recent one at the beginning followed by a backtrack to your first experience.
7. SHOWCASE EDUCATIONAL BACKGROUND
- Mention your Institute Name, Programme Name, Graduation Date, and Marks scored. You can also follow the chronological order in this section.
- Highlight academic honor, scholarships, rank in competitive or other entrance exams received, certifications if any.
8. DIVERSIFY YOUR EXTRA-CURRICULARS
- This is the major differentiator and will help you get an edge over the others. Mention any Positions of Responsibility held at clubs or any service you provide at any NGO, etc.
- Highlight the impact your activities have created on others or the society as a whole, and so on.
9. PERFECT THE GRAMMAR
- There is no room for spelling errors, tense mix-up, gender etc.
- Use Active & Passive Voice carefully! A sentence may convey a stronger message in Active Voice than in passive.
10. PROOF READ AGAIN AND AGAIN
- Ask a third person to read your resume before submitting it. It’s easier for someone to find a mistake if not written by them.
- Make sure it aligns with the objective to submit the resume.
Sounds a bit difficult?
Check out the infographic below which breaks these points and shows a pictorial representation of the same.
If you want a more in-depth overview, check out our post “10 Steps towards the Perfect MBA Resume”