Creating a Winning Data Science Resume: Tips to Get You Shortlisted

Are you struggling to get shortlisted for your dream data science job? Well, it could be because of your resume. There can be many reasons for rejection, of course. But, if you’re not getting to the interview stage, your resume probably needs an upgrade. Preparing a job-winning resume is the key to secure your desired data science job. According to industry research, a recruiter spends merely 6-8 seconds on your resume. This means you’ve got less than 10 seconds to make your resume stand out and create an impact.

recruiter spends merely 6 to 8 seconds on your resume

So how do you write your resume? Well, you need a strategy. A well-defined strategy will help you highlight the right information to the recruiter and get you shortlisted. But how? Let’s understand.


Ten Tips to Write an Impactful Resume

Ten Tips to Write an Impactful Resume


1.     Keep Your Resume Short and Crisp

The key to writing an impactful data science resume is to keep it short. As mentioned above, recruiters barely spend 6-8 seconds scanning your resume, therefore, it is important to keep your resume short and precise.

One way to do this is to limit your resume to one to two (if only necessary) pages. The shorter the resume, the better it is. Keeping your resume concise means that you should only add information that is crucial, for example, your work experience or projects, and avoid information that is not necessarily required for a data science job.

2.     Attach a Professionally Taken Photo

Today when everything is virtual and digitalized, bringing a human touch to your resume makes a big difference. Adding a professionally taken photo immediately suggests to the recruiter that you’re detail-oriented. It not only helps the recruiter to recognize you, but it humanizes your profile. And make sure you use the same photo in your LinkedIn and GitHub profiles. Consistency makes all the difference.

3.     Write a Personalized Career Objective

The next important step is to have a personalized career objective in your resume. One of the mistakes many people make is they send the same generic resume for different job profiles and expect to receive a call. But, if you’re really serious about getting a job, then more effort and attention to detail is required.

So, how should you write your career objective to get a call? The best way to write a compelling career objective is to sync it with the job description for the role you’re applying for. Keep your career objective very specific and precise; for example, if you’re a beginner applying for the role of a data analyst, your career objective should be something like ‘looking for an entry-level data analyst position’.

4.     Include a Descriptive Internship/Project Experience

When mentioning any internship, project, or job experience, it is imperative to give a summary or description of your contribution to it. This description should be outcome-driven to make it impactful.

For instance, if you’ve completed a project on the topic ‘fraud detection for financial services’ your description should look something like this: Developed a machine learning model to identify fraudulent transactions in real-time. Achieved a precision rate of 97% and a recall rate of 85%.

You should also mention the tools you may have used during your project, internship or previous work experience because most recruiters when hiring for a data science job look for candidates proficient in using specific data science tools.

5.     Mention The Key Responsibility Areas (KRAs) in Your Work Experience

When writing your work experience in your resume, you must mention the key responsibility areas of your previous/current job profile. It allows the recruiter to understand your job profile in much better detail. It will also help you give a humble brag about your position and importance in your previous organization/s. And don’t forget, this is a good place to refer to any major project you worked upon in your previous organization as it will help your resume stand out.

6.     Use Bullets to Avoid Long Sentences

As mentioned in the very first point, it is crucial to keep your resume short and crisp. One way to do that is to use bullets instead of writing long sentences. Recruiters are often in a hurry when going through stacks of resumes and adding bullets will ensure that your important information is being read.

7.     Add Project/Certification Links (If Any)

Resumes give very compact insight into your experience and expertise. A good way to give an in-depth insight into your experience and expertise to the recruiter is by adding links to your projects and certifications. If your resume interests the recruiter, chances are that they will open the links to your projects to understand how you contributed to it and applied certain tools. Adding links to your projects and certifications is a great way to impress the recruiter and get your resume shortlisted.

8.     Add Links to Your LinkedIn and GitHub Profiles

In addition to adding links to your projects, it is highly recommended that you add links to your social media profiles such as LinkedIn and GitHub to give a more detailed insight of your experience.

Also, ensure that both your LinkedIn and GitHub profiles are updated. For instance, if you’ve completed a certification, add it to your LinkedIn profile with a picture of the certificate. Or, if you’ve read about a recent finding on data science, share it on your profile. Having a robust LinkedIn and GitHub profile will show the recruiter that you keep yourself updated with industry trends and have a positive attitude toward continuous learning.

9.     Include Relevant Data Science-related Keywords

Since technology has advanced, the process of scanning resumes has also evolved with time. Today, instead of going through thousands of resumes manually, recruiters use Application Tracking Software (ATS). Application Tracking Software is a tool that filters out resumes on the basis of certain keywords in the job description and weeds out the ones that lack those keywords. This means, even if you have a great profile, your resume won’t get shortlisted unless it has those ‘keywords’ in it. Therefore, you must add relevant keywords in your resume as per the job description.

But how do you figure out which keywords you should add in your resume? The key is to read the job description carefully and highlight important points. For instance, if the job description specifies that the candidate must have proficiency in tools like TensorFlow and Tableau, then you must include these two tools as essential keywords on your resume.

10.     Avoid Unnecessary Information

When writing your resume, keep it to-the-point and precise and avoid adding any unnecessary information. For instance, if you’re applying for the role of data analyst, your recruiter would be indifferent about your hobbies and extra-curricular activities. Rather they would be more interested in knowing about the projects you worked on and your work experience.

However, if you wish to add hobbies or any interest keep it up to one to two points only. When applying for a technical position, you should add hobbies/interests that are technically driven and support your job profile.

Now that you’ve covered all ten tips to make your resume impactful, you need to know what hierarchy to follow when mentioning these details in your resume.

If you’re just starting out in your career, make sure to prioritize the following hierarchy in your resume: start with a career objective, then showcase your projects, include internships (if applicable), and conclude with certifications. If you’re a seasoned professional, structure your resume as follows: begin with your career objective, present your projects, detail your work experience or internships, and conclude by highlighting your certifications.

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Your Next Steps

Following the above steps while writing your resume will increase your chances of getting your resume shortlisted. Remember, everyone gets a certain amount of rejection at the beginning of the recruitment process, but through patience, dedication and consistency, you will improve your chances of being shortlisted for your dream data science job.

If you would like to know more about kickstarting a career in data science, contact our Learner Support Team at [email protected]. They will be more than happy to guide you on your next steps.

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