9 Ways To Get Your Resume Noticed (+ What Not To Do)

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June 19, 2024
Edited by
Camille Trent
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min read

3 key takeaways

  • Getting your resume noticed means grabbing the attention of hiring managers and recruiters.
  • There are nine simple ways to write and format your resume so it's noticed quickly.
  • Teal's AI Resume Builder can help you create an optimized, tailored resume that gets seen.

If you're applying to jobs but not hearing back, take a closer look at your resume.

As the first thing a company sees about you, your resume has to showcase your skills and experience in an attention-grabbing way that sets you apart.

Below, you'll discover nine ways to help your resume stand out.

From optimizing your content for applicant tracking systems (ATS) to tailoring your resume for specific positions, you'll learn how to get your resume noticed and increase your chances of landing an interview.

Struggling to get your resume seen? Sign up for Teal today to optimize your content and improve your visibility.

Why getting your resume noticed early is important

When you submit a job application, your resume is often one of hundreds vying for the attention of hiring managers and recruiters. This, coupled with the fact that recruiters only have a few minutes (sometimes seconds) to take the first pass at each submission, means your resume needs to make an immediate impact.

To increase your chances of getting an offer, your resume needs to showcase your unique value prop and demonstrate why you're the best fit for the role—fast.

What it means to get your resume noticed

Getting your resume noticed is about making your resume stand out by emphasizing what makes you unique, showcasing your strengths, and clearly demonstrating why you're the best fit for the role.

Here’s what it means to get your resume noticed:

  • Standing out: Your resume grabs the attention of hiring managers
  • Highlighting strengths: Your unique skills and accomplishments are front and center (and easy to find at a glance)
  • Best fit: You clearly demonstrate why you’re the ideal candidate for the role.
  • First impression: You make a memorable and positive impact from the very first glance
  • Stepping stone: This recognition moves you one step closer to landing an interview (and getting the job)

9 ways to get your resume noticed

Now that you understand the importance of getting your resume noticed, it's time to explore nine actionable strategies to help you get there.

1. Use the right format

The first step in writing a resume that gets noticed is using a format that can be easily parsed by an ATS.

An ATS is a digital filing system used by companies to organize, filter, and search through job applications. Recruiters use these systems to quickly search for and identify candidates who match the qualifications they're looking for.

Submitting your resume in PDF format is generally the best option.

A PDF resume:

  • Preserves your formatting
  • Ensures your resume looks the same across devices
  • Keeps your content from being edited without consent

And while a PDF format is the most common, some employers may prefer other file types. Always check the job listing for specific format requirements.

2. Tailor your resume to the job description

Once your resume passes through the ATS, it's vital to tailor your content to the job descriptions. You shouldn't use the same generic resume for every job posting.

Recruiters search the ATS for target job titles, keywords, and other important language that align with the job description.

For example, if you're a Marketing Manager and the job description emphasizes campaign performance metrics and past experience with TikTok and LinkedIn, update your bullet points accordingly.

Before: Developed and executed marketing campaigns to drive brand awareness, increasing brand visibility by 20%.

Developed and executed marketing campaigns to drive brand awareness by analyzing campaign performance metrics, increasing brand visibility by 20% across LinkedIn and TikTok.

Align your skills with Teal

To increase your chances of getting noticed, use Teal's Matching Mode. Matching Mode quickly compares your resume to a job description and offers insights (and a Match Score!) for how well your skills align with the position.

Then, Teal's Job Description Keywords tell you the most important words and skills that matter to the job. This information helps you customize your resume (and cover letter) faster and with purpose, making it more likely to grab attention because it aligns.

All Teal members get the top five hard skills from any job description to align their experience to the role. Teal+ members get unlimited hard skills, soft skills, and other important language to customize their resume even further.

3. Opt for a clean and professional format

When a recruiter or hiring manager pulls your resume, a cluttered resume can make it hard for them to see your value quickly. A clean format makes it easy for them to scan and find the information they need.

Use clear headings, ample white space, and a professional font to improve readability.

Pro Tip: Teal's Design Mode offers flexible, customizable resume formatting for a personalized, clear approach; here's how:

  • Templates: Choose from modern, traditional, or creative designs that can be parsed easily by the ATS and read by a human recruiter.
  • Sections: Reorder and rename sections to fit your experience so the most relevant information is front and center.
  • Style: Choose typeface, font size, accent colors, and line height to create a visually appealing and easy-to-read resume without having to manually format.
  • Settings: Format dates, locations, and experiences consistently throughout your resume for a professional look.

How to get your resume noticed with a clean design
Use Teal's Design Mode to customize your resume format in just a few clicks.

4. Include a strong summary

Once your resume is pulled (and easy to read at a glance), the first step for a hiring professional is usually reviewing your professional summary.

Think of your professional summary as a highlight reel. It should showcase your greatest achievements using relevant keywords and quantifiable results or impact.

Your summary should be unique and tailored to the job. As Mike Peditto, Teal's Director of Talent, puts it:

"If I can copy and paste your professional summary and put it almost word-for-word at the top of somebody else's resume, and it makes no difference, it's not a great summary for what you bring to the table."

5. Quantify experience with metrics and results

Your resume shouldn't be made up of job responsibilities. Companies want to see results. To demonstrate your impact and show you can deliver those results, quantify your experience with metrics, numbers, and data whenever possible.

Numbers show you've achieved concrete outcomes in your previous roles and provide evidence you can do the same in a new position.

For example, instead of stating that you "increased sales," say something like:

Boosted sales by 25% within the first six months by implementing a new lead generation strategy.

6. Highlight relevant skills and certifications

Emphasize the skills that match the job requirements to show you're a strong fit for the role.

Especially in positions that require specific credentials (for example, project management roles often require a PMP), listing these on your resume can make a big difference in visibility.

If you have relevant certifications or licenses mentioned in the job description, make sure to add them to your resume.

For technical or specialty roles, showcase your proficiencies (for example, a programming language like Python) in a separate Skills section. This makes it easy for recruiters to quickly assess whether you have the necessary expertise for the position.

Get your resume noticed with a separate Skills section
Highlight relevant skills in a separate Skills section.

7. Keep it concise and relevant

Recruiters and hiring managers have limited time to review each resume. Shorten your resume and keep it concise and focused on the most relevant information for the job you're applying for.

Aim for a resume length of one to three pages unless you're applying for an executive-level position or a role that requires extensive experience.

It's also helpful to use bullet points to highlight your achievements and results and avoid lengthy paragraphs that can be difficult to read.

8. Proofread and edit carefully

Before submitting your resume, take the time to proofread and edit it carefully. A resume with typos, grammatical errors, or inconsistent formatting can create a poor impression and may even lead to your application being rejected.

Read through your resume multiple times, and consider asking a friend or family member to review it as well. Fresh eyes can often catch mistakes you might have overlooked.

9. Revisit, update, and refine

As you apply for different positions and hear back from employers, take note of which resumes generate the most interest.

Analyze the content of your successful resumes: what did you include, and what did you leave out?

Also, don't submit an outdated resume. Instead, Continuously update your content with new skills, experiences, and achievements. By regularly adding your most up-to-date details, you'll be better prepared to apply for new opportunities as they arise.

Resume errors to avoid for better visibility

While leveraging the strategies above can stop you from asking, "Is my resume being seen?" it's also important to avoid common errors that can hinder your chances of getting noticed.

Here are some resume errors to avoid:

  • Using a generic, one-size-fits-all resume for every application
  • Submitting a resume with typos, grammatical errors, or inconsistent formatting
  • Including irrelevant or outdated information like marital status or a job you had thirty years ago
  • Using vague or cliché language that doesn't demonstrate your unique value
  • Neglecting to tailor your resume to the specific job and company
  • Submitting a resume in a format that is difficult for the ATS to parse
  • Failing to highlight your most impressive and relevant achievements

Avoiding these mistakes will make your resume stronger and more compelling. And it'll have a better chance of being seen (and considered) by employers.

Get your resume noticed with Teal

Having a resume that stands out is how you're going to land an interview.

By tailoring your content, using a clean format, and making the most of the space you have to showcase your value, you can create a resume that demonstrates why you're the best fit for a job.

Teal's AI Resume Builder makes it easy to optimize your resume for maximum impact. With features like Matching Mode and Flexible Resume Design, you can quickly tailor your content, improve your alignment, and create a visually appealing document that gets noticed fast.

Ready to be seen?

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I make sure my resume gets noticed?

To make sure your resume gets noticed, tailor it to the specific job description by highlighting relevant skills and experiences. Use a clean, professional format that's easy to read, and quantify your achievements with metrics to showcase your impact.

Why is my resume not getting noticed?

Your resume may not be getting noticed if it’s not tailored to the job description, lacks relevant keywords, or has a cluttered format. Ensure your resume is ATS-friendly, highlights your strengths, and is free of typos and grammatical errors to improve its visibility.

Is my resume being seen?

Your resume might not be seen if it's not optimized for applicant tracking systems (ATS), lacks relevant keywords, or isn't tailored to the job description of the role you're applying to. Make sure your resume is formatted correctly, highlights your unique skills and experiences, and is free of errors to improve its visibility and chances of being seen by hiring managers and recruiters.

How do I get my resume picked?

To get your resume picked, focus on using a professional and clean format, tailor your content to the job description, and quantify your achievements with specific metrics. Highlight relevant skills and certifications, and continuously update your resume with new experiences and accomplishments.

Kayte Grady

Kayte, Senior Copywriter at Teal and Champion of ADHD professionals, is a seasoned writer passionate about storytelling and career growth. With a data-driven approach to content marketing and a word-nerd knack for resume builder analysis, Kayte’s on a mission to empower job seekers to land a job they love. Constantly pivoting and reinventing herself, this social-worker-turned-marketer found growth and camaraderie in tech—a genuine surprise given her never-ending devotion to the paper calendar.

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