open sesame: quick tips to making your resume open doors

When interviewing for your dream job, take these quick tips into consideration to boost your visibility in your job hunt.

Have a favorite tip that isn't included? Feel free to add it in the comments below!


The upper right hand corner is traditionally the first thing hiring managers see when they are physically flipping through resumes. Catch their eye with a personal logo or stamp that represents your personal brand. Afraid to use color? Don't be. Choose an accent color that you can use for your headlines. Not only will you help break up the monotony, you'll definitely stand out from your competition.


Hiring managers are often looking for keywords in your resume or cover letter that relate to the keywords in their listing, if they haven't already employed an AI (artificial intelligence) review system. When reviewing the listing, pay attention to which duties they are looking for, how they've titled the position, and the bullet points of requirements. Add those keywords and phrases to your resume verbatim so you have a higher chance of being seen in the digital stack of resumes.


While cover letters are rarely read in their entirety, it's important to still address the cover letter to the person who is hiring for the position. Don't know their name? Do a little LinkedIn stalking, look at the company's website (you have no idea how many people DON'T do this before interviewing). If you still cannot find the hiring manager, address the cover letter to the Director or VP of the department you are interested in. Anything is better than "To Whom It May Concern".

Another personalization tip is ~again~ in the dreaded cover letter. Highlight work the company has done that caught your eye. Maybe they ran a campaign you loved, or they were recently involved in a philanthropy you support. Show them that you are paying attention, that you care, and that you're not sending the same canned cover letter that is blasted to everyone hiring in the area.

Your resume and cover letter may serve the same general purpose as always, but the expectation for you to deliver a clean, well-thought-out, well-formatted, well-written resume are higher than ever. This is your chance to show your authenticity, your personality, and your achievements. Highlight what's most important or notable over "proficient in Microsoft Office". You only have one page. Use it wisely.