IN THE MIDDLE | beyond the job description

Through the Eyes of a Recruiter: Building a Resume that Resonates

By Alyanna Silvestre
Published April 30, 2021

Your resume is your very key to opening doors to new possibilities and opportunities. So, you've probably spent hours redesigning yours to make sure that it will stand out. Unfortunately, recruiters will only spend seconds looking at it.

Human beings have always had small attention spans, and this is especially true for recruiters. According to numerous studies, due to the number of applications they have to go through each day, recruiters only spend an average of six seconds when reviewing resumes before deciding if the applicant is a good fit. So what's the best way to restructure your resume and make the recruiter do a double-take? Understand what they look at before aiming for what they look for.

In a bid to aid job seekers to gain a competitive advantage, Icon Executive Asia's managing director, Patt Soyao, explained the importance (or the lack thereof) of the basic categories in your resume in the fourth episode of his "Job Defined" podcast, and we're here to break it down for you.

Career Objective

Including a career objective at the top part of your resume is not necessary.

Aside from the bitter fact that it is now deemed outdated and ineffectual by many employers and recruiters due to it not being informative at all, HR professionals have very little time to spare on every resume. Therefore, it is best to keep your resume concise and improve how you write your work experience. To fill in the valuable space that your objective used to occupy, consider including a list of your soft and hard skills instead.

Professional Experience and Educational Background

A resume's highlights section should summarize your professional and academic background relevant to the position you are applying for. This section must allow recruiters to see employment patterns and alignment between your undergraduate course, graduate degree, and career choice. Patterns help recruiters weigh your career growth and determine whether you’re someone who often jumps from one company to another. Meanwhile, alignment between your education and profession validates your experience and expertise. This alignment is important through the eyes of recruiters because, as per Soyao, knowledge learned but not applied is technically a waste.

In terms of tenure, having long-term experience is not just about adding numbers to your resume, it’s about years of building expertise. With this, Soyao highlighted the wisdom behind earning three or more years of experience in one company, explaining how three years is the sweet spot for every professional as this is when one will see the impact of their employment and contribution to the growth of the business. However, you must be mindful when indicating years of experience in the same position for consecutive years as it may be seen as career stagnation.

“There are things that you’ve planted in your first year that will only bear fruit in the second and third year.” - Patt Soyao, Managing Director of Icon Executive Asia

When writing your years of experience, try to include the total number of years you had or have with a company. This small detail will not only save the recruiter some time but also get their attention. See below for reference:

Your Name

Once you have restructured your resume in a way that highlights your work experience and expertise, your name will now be the next thing that a recruiter will look at, because, according to Soyao, “your name only becomes relevant the more relevant you become to the one looking.”

Your resume is your ticket to your next interview, or maybe even your next job, so take the time to build one that will resonate with a recruiter.

More Opportunities to Come

Are you looking for more handy job hunting tips? A new class from Nas Academy is coming catered specially for individuals and professionals looking to advance their job hunt regardless of where they are in their professional journey!

Icon Executive Asia and Nas Academy have recently partnered to bring a two-episode online job hunting class entitled "How to Get Hired."

Set on July 15 and 22 at 7:00 p.m., the online class aims to help all kinds of job seekers get hired for the job they deserve to build the career they want for themselves by looking at job hunting through the eyes of the recruiters.

Headlining the two-part course is Icon Executive Asia's managing director, Patt Soyao, and his trusted recruitment executives and Icon's founding iconic team members, Loradel Ang and Jay Avenida.

The registration fee is priced at P1,500, but Nas Academy and Icon Executive Asia are offering early bird registration rates to four interested participants and a 50% discount to 50 students who will use the promo code "PATTSTUDENT" upon signing up. 

Slots are limited; secure yours now! 

To register, please visit this link: