10 Resume Proofreading Techniques You Should Try
Searching for and finding the perfect job is a time consuming task. And, when you finally come across that dream job with the description that seems as though it was written just for you, the last thing you want to do is mess up the opportunity by submitting an error-ridden resume.
Mistakes are easy to miss when you’re writing your resume and cover letter, but they can almost guarantee your resume a one-way trip to the trash can when those errors are spotted by an employer. Here are some fantastic techniques you can use to help catch all of those problematic errors before you send off your resume.
Give voice to your words
You may notice that when you’re reading something in your head, you tend to skim through it more quickly, making it easy to skip over spelling mistakes and let missing words or grammatical errors go unnoticed. But, when you read your words out loud, it forces you to slow down a little more and focus on each word. What you’ve written may sound great and make perfect sense when you’re reading it to yourself in your head, but if something doesn’t make sense when you’re reading it out loud, it certainly isn’t going to make sense to an employer reading it. By putting a voice to your words, you can also hear if something sounds strange or if there’s a better word that could be used in place of one that just doesn’t fit quite right. It gives you a different perspective on your writing, that lets mistakes stand out a little more so you can catch them and fix them.
Who really knows every single grammar rule there is out there? You may be a killer writer, and great at expressing yourself in words, but when it comes to grammar, it’s a totally different ballgame. But, when an employer picks out grammar mistakes in your resume, it can drop your credibility like a rock — especially if you’ve touted yourself as a perfectionist, who’s meticulous attention to detail is like no other. Get rid of those grammatical errors, and present your best self with a pristine, grammatically perfect resume. An online proofreader, like 1Checker, can help you avoid those potentially embarrassing mistakes that could cost you the opportunity of landing that job. It’s both a spelling and grammar checker that keeps your writing natural sounding, letting you make a great first impression.
Spellcheck cannot be trusted
There are some benefits to using an automated spell checker, and they’ll catch the very obvious mistakes. But, there are things that a computer just can’t catch. Something could very well be spelled properly, but in the context you’ve used it, is totally wrong. “You’re” and “your are” both spelled right, but depending on what you’re trying to say, you could be using the incorrect word.
Running your resume through a spell checker is a good start, but it’s always beneficial to have someone else read through it also. Expert proofreaders are a great resource, when you can’t trust an automated spell checker, and BoomEssays has a team of professionals ready to help you. Even if your lingo is job-specific, they won’t have any problems, since each proofreader is an experienced pro in their field of work and will know exactly what you’re trying to say.
Approach it from a different direction
Once again, reading your resume left to right and top to bottom can leave you missing some mistakes you’ve made. Our brain fills in some blanks when we read, so we don’t always notice spelling errors, since our smart little brains fix things for us as we go. Try looking at it from a different direction — namely, backwards. Read everything you’ve written backwards to quickly find spelling mistakes. No, what you’re reading isn’t going to make much sense, but because it’s not going to flow together quickly and easily, your brain forces you to slow down and examine each word. It’s harder to automatically fill in the blanks, because the sentences aren’t linear and sensical. You won’t be able to spot grammar errors like this, but spelling mistakes will be a lot easier to see. Get another view of your work using the TypoVision proofreading tool, that displays your text in an unfamiliar way. Doing this, much like reading it backwards, makes it easier to spot those spelling mistakes, because your brain is forced to work in a different way.
Take some time off
As long as you’ve got the time to spare, it’s always a good idea to take a step back, put your resume away for a little while and come back to it later. When you look at something too much, you can start to overlook even the most glaring mistakes, because you’ve become too familiar with it. Giving yourself a day, or even a few hours, away from your resume lets you reset your mind. Perhaps what you thought sounded great before, all of a sudden doesn’t make much sense. When you’re writing, it’s easy to let mistakes slip by, because in your head, what you’ve put together makes perfect sense. You can also enlist the help of another set of eyes to make sure everything reads as well as you think it does. EssayRoo can match you with a professional proofreader, who’s also got experience in the field of work you’re interested in. That means they’ll be able to tailor the language in your resume to the job, making a lasting impression on the person tasked with reading through the resumes being submitted.
Mimic their style
Certain things may not matter much to you when you’re writing your resume, like putting a comma at the end of your bullet points. But, to someone who’s reading and assessing your resume, those little things could make a difference. Mimicking the style of the hiring manager will leave a good first impression on them — they may not notice that you’re using the same stylistic elements as them, but they’ll probably notice if you don’t. Check out the job posting, and use the same style preferences that you see there, since the hiring manager was likely the person putting together that job posting. When they’re reading something that is reflective of what they’re used to seeing and writing themselves, it makes for a more comfortable read and they won’t be fixated on the things they would have done differently.
Get a real person to read it
Sometimes it’s easier to just copy and paste your text into an automated spelling and grammar checker, and while a computerized tool can catch many errors, it’s not likely to catch every single one of them. That’s where a real, live person can really be an asset. People can read context, where computers just can’t. And, while a sentence may be spelled perfectly, when it’s read by a person, it may not make sense or be easy to comprehend. When you’re reading your own writing, you’ve come to be familiar with it, and you know what you’re meaning to say, so it’s so easy to miss things. Someone who’s laying their eyes on your writing for the first time is better equipped to notice those mistakes, because they don’t know what you’re trying to say, so if it doesn’t make sense, it will stand out to them. If you are looking for a real person, who is also an expert in that line of work, to help with your proofreading, check out UK Writings. Their proofreading services will pair you up with someone who knows exactly what to look for, and what type of improvements can be made to the language of your resume to make it the most impactful.
Hard copy review
Staring at a computer screen for too long can cause you to go a little crossed-eyed and start missing even the easiest mistake to spot. Try printing out your resume to see an actual hard copy that you can review. Not only will you get to look at it away from the computer screen, but you’ll also see what it’ll look like if an employer decides to print it. Make sure nothing funky happens, like the margins shifting. Before hitting the print button, get a quick review from Proofread Bot, that can pick out any errors and make additional suggestions for improving your writing.
Get the personal stuff right
We usually just assume that we’ve typed out our personal information perfectly, since we know it so well. But mistakes can happen, and even the smallest error here could actually cost you the job. Get one number wrong in your phone number or misspell your email address, and an employer won’t be able to contact you, no matter how interested they are.
Narrow your focus
Trying to catch every single grammar, spelling and stylistic mistake you’ve made can be tough if you’re trying to do it all at once. Break things up by just focusing on one area at a time — read it once for spelling, then again for grammar. It may take a little more time, but you’re more likely to catch the mistakes in there if you’re specifically looking for one thing. Get yourself started by turning to Slick Write for some suggestions on how to boost the level of your writing. You can even narrow what it searches for, including commonly confused words and extra spaces.
Ensure that what you’re sending out to employers is absolutely perfect and error free. With the help of these techniques and valuable resources, you can put your best foot forward and give yourself the best chance at landing that dream job.