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A Google recruiter shares the winning 3-part formula for resume writing success

Ruth Umoh

Google is a highly sought-after employer, fielding more than 50,000 applicants a week. Yet just a sliver of those applicants actually get hired, thanks, in part to poorly-written resumes.

While Google automatically rejects resumes with typos, a more critical error won't get flagged by spellcheck. Most resume job descriptions, according to Google recruiters and hiring experts, are too vague and too lengthy. More critically, those descriptions don't explicitly demonstrate how candidates made big things happen — how they led projects, boosted sales or saved the company money.

To help you avoid making that same error, a Google software engineer and recruiter shared a simple job description formula in a company-sponsored YouTube video designed to make resume-speak easy: "Accomplished X, as measured by Y, by doing Z."

The format keeps a resume's work experience section concise, clean and to the point. It also forces candidates to incorporate metrics, data and concrete results — details the Googlers say are valued at the company.

In these three examples, Googlers demonstrate how a simple rewrite can make any resume detail more powerful and better help in telling a job-hunter's story.


Example #1: Explain why your wins are impressive

What the resume says: "Won second place in Hackathon."

What the Googlers method suggests: "Won second place out of 50 teams in Hackathon with standout productivity tool."

Why it will get noticed: Specifying the large number of entrants provides context and makes it clear how you stand out in a competitive crowd.

Example #2: Show how you stand out

What the resume says: "Member of Leadership for Tomorrow Society"

What the Googlers suggest: "Selected as one of 275 participants nationwide for this 12-month professional development program for high-achieving diverse talent based on leadership potential and academic success."

Why it will get noticed: The second version makes it clear that membership in this group is an achievement, not just a social activity. Sharing the number of participants provides additional context on the program's exclusivity.

Example #3: Show you're a changemaker

What the resume says: "Increased server query response time."

What the Googlers suggest: "Increased server query response time by 15 percent by restructuring our API."

Why it will get noticed: Sharing percent growth shows how you made change happen.

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