Start-ups are the new rage of the present day just like internet companies were over a decade ago. So much so that in the past few years, the start-up industry has even seemed to explode. Each day, a new start-up emerges, creating a myriad of job opportunities for the very talented bunch of candidates that are out there. While there are an array of positions in these start-ups waiting to be filled, it is often a big deal to land an interview with any of the start-ups.  Mostly because these companies may or may not hire through conventional channels.

At more prominent and well-established firms, it may be easier to get an interview by getting in touch with the HR of the company. Here however, you need to be creative to be noticed. Your first and foremost contact person could even be the CEO or one of the busy co-founders of the company.

Since your resume doesn’t go through a lot of screening process and goes directly to the person concerned, it has to speak volumes. Also because funded startups throw in a lot of perks and provide high salaries, they ensure only the right bunch gets through to the interview stages, so less time is wasted.

While you may have heard many birds chirping as to resumes being a cliché in startups, a resume does define your seriousness and skill set and it stays the first step to hiring you.

Enumerated below are a few easy tips on writing that perfect resume for helping you land up that dream job in the start-up of your choice.

  1. Make it worth reading: Keeping it simple and classy is the key. Unless you are someone from the creative fields, refrain from using bold colours and crazy fonts. Use simple bullet points instead of experimenting with the many different styles available. Make sure you have strong action verbs backing your accountabilities and results to show that your work resulted in some groundbreaking impacts.

  2. Get referred: If you happen to have a reference of any sort, it just works wonders. Since you do not have to go through some screening processes, your chances of landing up that job increase by a significant margin. If you have worked under someone reputed before and can somehow get a reference letter from them, you would be able to push the right buttons.

  3. Skip the Unnecessary: You need your resume to shine through, make sure you skip writing a long resume and go for a short one. No one has the time to go through a 10-page resume. Remember, your start-up interviewer is busier than the HRs of the many companies. 10 seconds is all you have to be able to make an impression. Make sure it is short and crisp. Ideally, go for a 1 pager. Another thing to take care is to spend more time working on the responsibilities of your present/last job than writing a near-perfect self-summary portraying you as a god. In all probability, your recruiter will straightaway jump to the work that you do/did than read your autobiography.

  4. To err shouldn’t be human: While Alexander Pope believed that making a few mistakes is human, the one reading your resume will never give you a job if there are errors (grammatical or semantic). In a start-up you only have one shot and that too with the one sitting on top of the prism. If you think you can get away with a few grammatical errors, trust us, you won’t. You will just end up losing a good opportunity.

  5. Stand Out, Get In: While writing your resume for a start-up, you must ensure to showcase your abilities in the best possible way. Your resume needs to stand out for you to be able to get into the firm. Use phrases that sound better and are grammatically more appealing. While using adjectives describing you and your work, make sure that the selection is perfect. Ensure every statement that your make about yourself, especially work related, are backed with strong numbers and proofs of the impact that was had. Startups want doers, so make sure your resume makes you look like one.

  6. Start-up Mode: If you happen to have landed up an interview with a start-up, make sure you are well-aware and well-read about the company before you enter that glass door. You need to learn about the start-up industry as a whole along with doing your research on the company you will be interviewing. Making a little impression never hurt anybody, did it?

  7. Exaggerating Much? While you do need to stand out and make a mark, ensure that you do not end up exaggerating your skills. There is no point of painting a rosy picture of your accomplishments, the best way to do it is mention the truth. Putting your achievements in right words shall do the trick.

When writing a resume, all you need to remember is you and your accomplishments. Understand the job description, realize your potential and go for it. Your resume should be written in a way that it may be able to sell itself to the CEO or the concerned person. If that’s what it does, you are ready to go.


This post first appeared on the getsetResumes.com Blog

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