PeoplePaul McAleer

Resume the Résumé

PeoplePaul McAleer

I review a lot of résumés. And I see a lot of different approaches. But there are some things that I note and look for right away. So consider these when you're polishing off the ol' one-pager, updating your portfolio, and buttoning up LinkedIn.

  1. Your résumé should be a one page PDF. Listen: I love text files too, but this is not quite the time for it. PDF is pretty standard for better or worse. Consider this your constraint.
  2. Edit the hell out of the thing. Both in text and design.
  3. Don't use buzzwords. They make you sound cheap, not knowledgable.
  4. If you include an objective, write it using your own language. Everyone is a "passionate, user-centered crafter of experiences." That's not you. What do you bring?
  5. Get your point of view across. You have a perspective as a designer. What do you care about? Make sure it comes through in your writing and the way you position your work.
  6. Include relevant stats and numbers that matter. Did your design launch? How did you know it was successful?
  7. Summarize key projects/stuff you did at your job. I don't need a 3-paragraph review of everything that happened at your last project or client. I need to know what you did that matters (to you, to the client/company, to the world, etc.)
  8. Charts of experience look nice but aren't as useful as a narrative. I don't know what a "10" in Axure is, anyway.
  9. Show your work. Where possible, tell me about the deliverables you have on your portfolio. Wireframes by themselves are 99% meaningless, other than being able to tell that you can use [app name here].
  10. Edit the hell out of the thing again.

Also: go read what my colleague Pernilla Peterson said, because her advice is all excellent.

I may edit (ha!) or refresh this post as more things come up.