Developers
July 24, 2020

Top Resume Tips for Software Developers

Thinking like a recruiter can seriously impact how you write your resume and skills section. There are definitely some variables to consider when writing a good resume; here are some tips and tricks to be mindful of when doing so.

Resumes are arguably the most important part of any job application process. The resume lets a potential employer know critical information about the candidate, from the most basic such as where the candidate lives and other contact information, to the more precise and detailed professional experience and universities attended. Employers also tend to judge resumes based on fonts, formatting, any grammatical error that might be present, or margins and length—some employers, depending on the sector, will simply discard resumes that go past one Microsoft Word page.

For individuals working in the business sector, the non-profit sector, or other social sciences, there are pretty basic guidelines to follow. Start with a good Profile section highlighting your best attributes, hard skills you’ve gained over the years, and then move onto the universities you’ve attended and degrees obtained, followed by your professional experience, the companies you’ve worked for, and the descriptions of what you did there and why it was important.

Different formatting for Software Developers

This might seem like common knowledge for individuals, and indeed if you go onto LinkedIn and do a random search, or look at your Connections who work in these sectors, you won’t find too many surprises.

However, looking at the resumes and experiences of a web, and/or software developer can be very different as the career trajectory of some of these individuals might not be as linear, and some of the skills and specializations of individuals in this highly technical field stand out as being non-traditional for the traditional resume.

One major feature for developers' websites that should stand out is the Technical Skills section. This section, usually at the top of a profile, should highlight what (coding) Languages the candidate is proficient in, Data Manipulation and Visualization Skills, and Database experience. One key thing to be aware of is that job posting, and even contract work for web development professionals will most likely clearly state in the job descriptions which Coding Languages are required for the position at hand and which Coding Languages and desired. Making sure to revamp your resume for each individual position can go a long way. If companies and recruiters see that candidates have an amazing resume but are simply lacking one Coding Language, they might move onto another Candidate with less experience but more expertise in said Language. This is because hard skills are irreplaceable.

Numbers, Data, and Results Orientation

Increasingly, as I mentioned in another blog, the online world and the way companies are orienting themselves is increasingly through data visualization, and quantifying their results and impact on company profiles. This competition has led to a sort of domino-effect whereby tech companies that don’t use data analytics and are behind on this trend get judged more harshly, or simply develop an inferior reputation next to a company that has successfully implemented such data in their reporting and transparency about how and why they operate.

Correspondingly, you might ask why data is important for resumes? Because in order for companies to feel confident that they are picking the right candidate for their newly found impact measurements, they also need to know that the candidate has hit KPIs in their own experience, which will indicate to hiring managers that they can drive results.

This is the difference between putting in your experience section, “Remodeled a client's website by conducting all front-end development and coding entire back-end” to a sentence that states how remodeling a website increased sales or revenue on that newly coded website within an allotted time frame. The latter sentence is what recruiters are looking for, as it is concrete, and also tells the truth about an exciting growth period at the company you worked for.

Finally, with respect to grade point averages (GPAs) as a data point on your resume and past performance in an academic environment, here is one last piece of advice: If an employer or application PDF explicitly or implicitly hints at the fact that they are looking for exceptional students, including your GPA might not be a bad idea. But still don’t expect this data point to be a key hiring decision.

The majority of the time including your GPA is an unnecessary data point that doesn’t really give recruiters a sense of how this number will translate to performance. It is becoming commonplace for organizations and recruiters alike to look at the fact that a candidate graduated and holds a B.A. or an M.A. from an accredited institution, versus whether or not that candidate got all As in college.

TagsResume TipsDevelopers
Michael Robbins
Writer
Michael is a writer that helps organizations align their mission and values to a wide audience.

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DevelopersJuly 24, 2020
Top Resume Tips for Software Developers
Thinking like a recruiter can seriously impact how you write your resume and skills section. There are definitely some variables to consider when writing a good resume; here are some tips and tricks to be mindful of when doing so.

Resumes are arguably the most important part of any job application process. The resume lets a potential employer know critical information about the candidate, from the most basic such as where the candidate lives and other contact information, to the more precise and detailed professional experience and universities attended. Employers also tend to judge resumes based on fonts, formatting, any grammatical error that might be present, or margins and length—some employers, depending on the sector, will simply discard resumes that go past one Microsoft Word page.

For individuals working in the business sector, the non-profit sector, or other social sciences, there are pretty basic guidelines to follow. Start with a good Profile section highlighting your best attributes, hard skills you’ve gained over the years, and then move onto the universities you’ve attended and degrees obtained, followed by your professional experience, the companies you’ve worked for, and the descriptions of what you did there and why it was important.

Different formatting for Software Developers

This might seem like common knowledge for individuals, and indeed if you go onto LinkedIn and do a random search, or look at your Connections who work in these sectors, you won’t find too many surprises.

However, looking at the resumes and experiences of a web, and/or software developer can be very different as the career trajectory of some of these individuals might not be as linear, and some of the skills and specializations of individuals in this highly technical field stand out as being non-traditional for the traditional resume.

One major feature for developers' websites that should stand out is the Technical Skills section. This section, usually at the top of a profile, should highlight what (coding) Languages the candidate is proficient in, Data Manipulation and Visualization Skills, and Database experience. One key thing to be aware of is that job posting, and even contract work for web development professionals will most likely clearly state in the job descriptions which Coding Languages are required for the position at hand and which Coding Languages and desired. Making sure to revamp your resume for each individual position can go a long way. If companies and recruiters see that candidates have an amazing resume but are simply lacking one Coding Language, they might move onto another Candidate with less experience but more expertise in said Language. This is because hard skills are irreplaceable.

Numbers, Data, and Results Orientation

Increasingly, as I mentioned in another blog, the online world and the way companies are orienting themselves is increasingly through data visualization, and quantifying their results and impact on company profiles. This competition has led to a sort of domino-effect whereby tech companies that don’t use data analytics and are behind on this trend get judged more harshly, or simply develop an inferior reputation next to a company that has successfully implemented such data in their reporting and transparency about how and why they operate.

Correspondingly, you might ask why data is important for resumes? Because in order for companies to feel confident that they are picking the right candidate for their newly found impact measurements, they also need to know that the candidate has hit KPIs in their own experience, which will indicate to hiring managers that they can drive results.

This is the difference between putting in your experience section, “Remodeled a client's website by conducting all front-end development and coding entire back-end” to a sentence that states how remodeling a website increased sales or revenue on that newly coded website within an allotted time frame. The latter sentence is what recruiters are looking for, as it is concrete, and also tells the truth about an exciting growth period at the company you worked for.

Finally, with respect to grade point averages (GPAs) as a data point on your resume and past performance in an academic environment, here is one last piece of advice: If an employer or application PDF explicitly or implicitly hints at the fact that they are looking for exceptional students, including your GPA might not be a bad idea. But still don’t expect this data point to be a key hiring decision.

The majority of the time including your GPA is an unnecessary data point that doesn’t really give recruiters a sense of how this number will translate to performance. It is becoming commonplace for organizations and recruiters alike to look at the fact that a candidate graduated and holds a B.A. or an M.A. from an accredited institution, versus whether or not that candidate got all As in college.

Resume Tips
Developers
About the author
Michael Robbins -Writer
Michael is a writer that helps organizations align their mission and values to a wide audience.

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