Sitting down and writing the perfect resume takes time. Reading your own resume should take just as much time.
That’s because proofreading your own resume can keep you from passing along a resume with typos, misspelled words, or even the wrong information. It’s not enough to write a perfect resume — you should read it multiple times to make sure it says exactly what you want it to.
Don’t rush through this part, make sure you set at least 20 minutes per page to read over your resume once you’re done. Your patience and thoroughness will be rewarded later.
Here are some top tips to make sure your resume is perfect when it’s time to send it out:
1. Put it away after you’ve written it. Have lunch or take a walk before proofreading.
2. Spellcheck, spellcheck, spellcheck. Run it and make sure everything is spelled correctly, but don’t rely on it entirely — sometimes words aren’t misspelled, but are the wrong word altogether.
3. Read it out loud. That’s right — read your resume out loud (to no one in particular) to make sure all the words make sense. (Read it slowly, too.)
4. Make sure you’ve used the right words.Use a dictionary to make sure you’ve used the correct word. For instance, affect and effect sound the same, but are different words.
5. Make sure the numbers are correct. Double-check times and dates to ensure accuracy.
6. Check punctuation and capitalization. Sentences should end with a period, names should be in capital letters. Contractions should have an apostrophe (it’s vs. its) and commas should be used in lists (plumbing, heating, and cooling).
7. Hand it to a friend or family member to read. Getting another set of eyes never hurts.
8. Use online tools. Grammarly, Purdue Online Writing Lab, and others can help point to small mistakes.