Alumni and staff teamed up to provide valuable resume building tips at the latest SMART Start event in November. Students had one-on-one time with alumni from companies like Morgan Stanley, CR England, Lone Peak Valuation and more.

Polly Unruh, Program Coordinator with the David Eccles School of Business Career Management Center, discusses the importance of a professional resume. She says, “A resume is a sales tool to sell yourself, a quick screening tool for employers, a method of giving name recognition with others, and an easy place to track what you’ve done.”

Unruh suggests keeping a long resume with all your accomplishments, which you can use to pick out specific items to customize individual resumes for each job for which you apply. Update this long resume every three months to be sure it includes your latest accomplishments.

Did you know it can take as little as six seconds for an employer to determine if a candidate will move forward to an interview? According to a 2012 survey by NACE (the National Association of Colleges and Employers), these are the key attributes that need to be addressed in order to send you to the next round of finding a great job:

  • Leadership
  • Problem-solving skills
  • Written communications skills
  • Ability to work in a team
  • Analytical/quantitative skills
  • Strong work ethic
  • Verbal communication skills
  • Initiative
  • Computer skills
  • Technical skills
  • Job experience with ways you have improved business at the place you work. This is done with an action statement followed by a quantifying statement.
  • Leadership and community service
  • Interest section

Equally important when discussing resumes is what not to include on your resume. Delete the following:

  • Your picture
  • Any personal information beyond contact information
  • Where you went to High School
  • “References Available Upon Request” Instead, create a separate document with three to four references with at least two of them being work related.
  • Extra pages – resumes should fit on one page
  • Crazy emails, i.e.,
  • Lies or exaggerations
  • Grammatical and spelling errors – always double check!
  • Functional formatting

Accounting grads need to customize their resumes with a few more items. All resumes need to include:

  • A sentence acknowledging their intent on sitting for the CPA
  • Overall GPA and Accounting/Business GPA

Now that we’ve reviewed the ways to make paper and online resumes stand out, there’s a new way to get your name in the game. Social media. Some people are starting to put their resumes on YouTube (like this one) as a way to show their creativity and describe their work experience.

Keep in mind, this is not a widely accepted practice as of yet. Of course social media is becoming more mainstream, but there are still companies that prefer the standard paper version. Be sure to research the company and its culture before dropping them your URL.







  • Looking for something specific?