I’m not sure if it is the hospitality industry in particular or if it is a general trend, but the vast majority of resumes I see need work. For purposes here, I will assume the former is true. Restaurant people, take note: resumes matter and they are very easy to create professionally.
A large number of my initial consultations with potential candidates will include a major revamp of his/her resume. I regularly see 4+ pages, spelling errors, chronological inconsistencies, employment gaps and more. Most errors can quickly be corrected with some due diligence and spellcheck. Attractive and concise resume templates are readily available through Word and of course through numerous sources online. I have a few I keep as my favorites that cover a broad range of styles. I think it’s important that you use one indicative of your style and conducive to the position you seek.
3 points which I hope will help you during this process:
1. Less is More. You do not need to list every task or responsibility you’ve had at every job and position. Many are already implied by the title and assumed by the interviewer. Instead, think of a resume as “talking points” and what you would like to discuss with your potential employer.
2. Picture or no picture? This is a tough one, but more than likely your picture is probably out there anyway in most cases. It’s better to present the first image under your control vs. what may come up in a Google or Facebook search.
3. Spell Check. You can’t do this enough. It can obviously be done automatically, but really you should have another person review for errors as well.
And I’ll leave you with one last thought: update your resume regularly and keep it current. Often times people do not put them together until they are actively looking. It gets cobbled together hastily and under duress. I’ve been in this industry for 25 years and I recognize the tendency to delay until absolutely necessary. Keep it current and add/subtract regularly or when you see others you like better and your employment experience changes. You’ll be ready for your next opportunity!