Your resume is done – did someone critique it for you?

Having your resume critiqued by a peer is very important. Follow these seven categories to reviewing a resume.

Writing your resume is only part of the task of having it ready to submit and be used. It is important to identify at least a couple of different people that you trust to critique your resume and give you feedback. When working with 4-H members and volunteers, Michigan State University Extension encourages them to use these seven categories to review a resume:

First impression

  • Does the resume look original and not based on a template?
  • Is the resume inviting to read, with clear sections and ample white space?
  • Is the resume's length and overall appearance appropriate given the career level and objective?

Personal contact information

  • Is the information correct?
  • Is the information complete?
  • Does the phone number include the area code?
  • Are personal email addresses or websites used business-like and appropriate?


  • Are there design elements such as bullets, bolding and lines to guide readers' eyes through the document and highlight important content?
  • Is there a good balance between text and white space?
  • Are margins even on all sides?
  • Are design elements like spacing and font size used consistently throughout the document?
  • If the resume is longer than a page, does the second page contain a heading? Is the page break formatted correctly?

Resume sections

  • Are all sections of the resume clearly labeled?
  • Is the work history listed in reverse chronological order, with the most recent job first?



  • Are accomplishments quantified by using numbers, percentages, dollar amounts or other concrete measures of success?
  • Do accomplishment statements begin with strong, varied action verbs?
  • Are accomplishments separated from responsibilities?

Writing style

  • Is the resume written in an implied first-person voice with personal pronouns avoided, such as I, me and my?
  • Is the content flow logical and easy to understand?
  • Is the resume free of typos, spelling or grammar errors?

Bonus tip: It is important to keep your resume in a simple, easy-to-use word processing program so that it can be easily accessed and edited. According to the MSU Career Services Network, Microsoft Word is the suggested software to keep your resume in for easy editing and copying and pasting into electronic applications.

MSU Extension has a variety of additional career preparation resources and tools available online that you may find useful.

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