If you’re a job seeker who’s over 50, you may be concerned about age discrimination. When writing your resume, there are some quick and easy things you can do to look younger and more up to date. Here’s 10 ideas:
Objectives are Out:
Today’s resume is all about showing what value you provide for employers. Objectives are about what YOU want and nothing will date your resume more quickly than starting with one. Instead, highlight your relevant skills and experience in a career summary to get hiring managers’ attention and entice them to continue reading.
Ditch the Physical Address:
Including your street address is unnecessary and, with identity theft on the rise, it’s another opportunity for someone to steal your personal information. Some employers and recruiters search by location, so include your city, state, and zip code only.
Phone Numbers Are 10 Digits:
In many locations across the U.S., dialing the full 10-digit number is required for local calls, so it’s no longer appropriate to enclose area codes in parenthesis. Instead, list your number as 555-555-5555 or 555.555.5555. Also, be sure to provide a personal number, not a work phone.
Customize Your LinkedIn URL:
If your in LinkedIn address ends with a series of numbers and letters, you need an update to look tech savvy. Ideally, you want your LinkedIn to be www.linkedin.com/in/yourname.
If you have a common name, you may need to add a middle initial or use hyphens or underscores between words. You can also tack a keyword on to the end of your name, such as janesmithsales, which gives you some additional branding.
Hotmail Is So Yesterday:
Using email providers that have been around for a while such as Hotmail and AOL make you look old. Set up a gmail account (it’s free) and create a professional address, preferably email@example.com. Stay away from addresses like firstname.lastname@example.org, which leave a negative impression on prospective employers.
As with LinkedIn, if you have a common name, you’ll need to be creative. One strategy is to make your gmail and LinkedIn URLs match. If you are janesmithsales on LinkedIn, make your email email@example.com to keep your branding consistent.
Leave References Behind:
Today’s resumes don’t include references or even the phrase “references available upon request.” Instead, print out a separate reference list in the same format as your resume to supply when asked; save the space on your resume for accomplishments.
Choose Your Font Wisely:
Your resume may be viewed on a variety of devices/systems, so use a universal font to help ensure consistency of formatting and embed fonts or save files as PDFs. One font to avoid is Times New Roman. Using it will quickly date you, plus it’s difficult to read
Generally, serif fonts are easier to read, though you might want to steer clear of Arial because it’s overused. Calibri is generally a good choice.
Lose the Dates:
If you’re concerned about ageism, omit the dates from your education. List the degree, major, institution, and city/state only.
One Space, Not Two:
Leaving two spaces after periods is a throwback to the days of typewriters. Modernize your resume by using one space following a period.
Fifteen is the Magic Number:
Taking your work history back more than about 15 years can age you. Earlier experience is usually in less important roles, using skills that may be outdated.
By focusing on the most recent 15 years of your career, you’ll emphasize the current, relevant skills and experience that employers are seeking. Remember, in resumes, more is not necessarily better-knowing what to leave out is just as important as knowing what to include.
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