How to pass the 6-second resume test

It takes a lot of effort for anyone to create a perfect resume to apply for a job. That is something we all know very well.

Because a resume is not just a document. It’s something that will determine your future.

Did you know that it will only take about 6-seconds for a hiring manager to decide whether to drop your resume from a job competition or move on with your resume?

That’s the bitter truth.

What exactly is this 6-second resume test?

Today, at least 250 resumes are usually submitted for even a single job opening. Or it could be thousands. So a hiring manager really does not have time to read all these resumes with their busy schedule. So they spend about six seconds on a single resume, skimming through it and deciding whether to drop it or keep.

If they feel that there is something to take in your resume during this little time, they will be more inclined to read your resume with more interest. Otherwise, your resume will go to the rejection pile.

There is no rocket science to this test conducted by hiring managers. What they really do is skim your resume before studying it in depth. By doing so, the hiring manager will be able to get a general idea of ​​whether the applicant is suitable for the position or not.

Recruiters will not completely analyze your resume during this test. The first impression is the key to success in passing the six-second resume test.

But, you know very well that hiring managers are different. We do not know how they think. Different recruiters may take different approaches to test your resume within six seconds.

However, if your resume is optimized for a six-second resume scan, you have no reason to be afraid of any kind of hiring manager or recruiter scanning your resume.

So below we will discuss how to prepare your resume for a six-second test.

Resume hotspots in a 6-second resume scan

Hotspots on a resume 6-second scan are areas where a recruiter’s eye can often collide. You need to pay more attention to those places when setting up your resume. They are,



      Contact information

      Professional title

      Professional Summary

      Current title/company

      Previous title/company

      Start/end dates


six second resume check list

So, how do you pass the resume six-second test?

There are many things you can do to pass the 6-second test. Setting up your resume using all the tips mentioned below will minimize the chances of you failing the 6-second scan.

01. Remember to insert first things first

You have only six seconds to get a recruiter’s attention. If so, your most important and accurate information should be presented first. To do this, you can do the following.


      Contact Information – Your name, location, phone number, and email address should be mentioned at the top of your resume. If you have a higher educational qualification or certificates related to the job you are applying for, mention the abbreviation next to your name. This will make it easier for the hiring manager to understand your qualifications.


      Resume Headline – It’s a meaningful and concise statement that hints at how wonderful you are. If used properly, you can get a very good first impression from this line.

02. Add your career-related social media links

This is a digital world. Any recruiter would like to see your job-related social media profiles. So if you have LinkedIn accounts and Twitter accounts that share your job-related posts, don’t forget to mention them.

If a recruiter is interested in you, they will definitely go to your online profile and try to find out more about you. Incorporating those links into your resume is a big help to hiring managers. This saves them time in searching for your online profile.

03. Make sure you are applying for the correct job

If the resume you are sending does not align with the published job, it will not take a hiring manager even 6 seconds to drop your application from the pile.

So before you submit your resume, make sure that you are applying for a job that suits your qualifications and education. And also list only the relevant work experience and skills. You need to tailor your resume according to the job description.

04. Avoid using photographs

If you include a photo in your resume, you are more likely to be discriminated against. Maybe the hiring manager may not like your appearance. If so, your resume will be sent to the trash bin in about less than 6 seconds.

Therefore, we recommend that you should not include your photo in the resume unless requested by the employer.

05. Make your resume easy to skim

As mentioned earlier, the ability to skim Your resume is very important in a six-second resume scan. So always choose a standard resume format that is free of heavy graphics.

Write section headers in a way that is easy to understand. Minimize the blocks of text and paragraphs and present your achievements concisely with bullet points. Then your hiring manager can skim read the resume and easily point out your important information.

06. Use numbers as much as possible

When you list your achievements, make them easy to understand with what you did and the result you got using quantified results. Numbers will always stand out on a resume and can capture the attention of a recruiter easily.

07. Pick an easy-to-read font

Remember, do not use fonts on your resume as you wish. Because some fonts are not compatible with resumes at all. So make it a habit to use one of the recommended resume fonts every time you craft a resume. When selecting a resume font, always try to find a scannable and not distracting font.

Here are some appropriate font choices you could use on your resume.







08. Reduce grammatical and typo errors

If your resume has a grammar or typo error, the first impression of a hiring manager will not be so favorable. Then he may think that you are a careless applicant. So you will be in danger of failing the resume 6-second scan. So pay much attention to the grammar and spelling of your resume.

09. Keep your resume concise

Limit your resume to one-page. If your CV is unnecessarily long or the bullet points are too long, it will be difficult for the hiring manager to skim your resume.

A brief and concise presentation of your achievements will allow the recruiter to know your experience, qualifications, and abilities.

10. Keep it tidy

When you build your resume, you need to pay more attention to its structure. For example, if your resume is divided into a few columns, they must be aligned with each other. Also, the bullet points on your resume should be aligned. That will make it easier for the reader to view your resume.

Proper management of the line spacing can also enhance the clarity of the resume. Therefore, apply single-space to your whole resume. By including a blank space between the sections will maximize the readability of the resume further.

Also maintain a balanced white space to text ratio.

So the tidiness of your resume will be one of the biggest factors for you to pass the six-second resume scan.

So here’s the summary..

Make every part of your resume extremely easy to read. When a recruiter skims your resume, we can’t pre-determine where they will start to read and which sections they will check. So every part of your resume needs to be optimized to pass the 6-second test as much as possible.

If you pass the resume 6-second test, you will be much closer to your job dream. After getting past this scan, the hiring manager will perform a complete analysis of your resume. If you have nicely crafted your perfect resume, you will eventually get interview opportunities and a potential job offer.