Are you in the process of screening candidates and not sure what to look for in a resume? While everyone is unique, there are some key indicators of what should be on a resume.

To save resources and your time, the resume screening process is crucial. The paper version of the candidate reflects an image of how the person will be and potentially perform in-person.

Below are some points to look for when reading applicants resumes:

1. Concise content

Look for consistency throughout the entire resume, including the formatting and grammar. If there is wording that is misspelled this could reflect their attention to detail.

Some creative design is alright but look for resumes that are not overboard. Too much colour or graphics takes away the readers attention from the resume content.

A one-page (two-sided) page is the most common, with avoiding the use of personal pronouns such as “I”.

2. Longevity

If there is constant job change or short turnover with each job this could be an indicator that they have been fired, low job loyalty or have moved residency multiple times. Whatever the reason is, longevity in a company is a good sign.

With longevity comes a career history that should show increasing levels of responsibility, if you see professional growth in the company this is a good reflection of their performance.

The skill development is greater when an employee gains trust and reliability with their job. If their employment is longer, it is safe to assume they were given more opportunities to grow and learn than the new staff.

3. Skill matching

The entire screening process is a way to see if the candidate is a good fit for you. Match their story and experience to what you are looking for.

If they require education to complete the work, such as degrees or certifications make sure this is listed or has other experience to compensate for its loss.

The core values and skills of the individual should also match. If they highlight, they only like working in a team setting and your job is highly independent, this connection is not right.

However, if the skills don’t seem aligned there is still a chance! If they are willing to learn and have an open mindset, they can be a strong candidate.

4. Detailed effort

Look for detailed statements about their experience rather than general ones. You want to avoid picking resumes that look exactly like the resumes posted on the internet.

There should be hard facts listed, with specific and measurable attributes about their success in a position. If they say they are a strong leader, what steps have they taken to become one?


With keeping the four points above in mind when screening candidates you should have greater success with the candidates you hire. Making the effort to invest time into this process helps with employee retention, loyalty and improves overall corporate culture.