How to Decide What to Keep (And What to Nix) on Your Resume

Nov 27, 2013 - Joe Matar

People often wonder how to decide whether to keep a particular bullet point, or even a whole job or section, on their resume.

Depending on your industry and your experience level, that answer can vary.

Here’s a simple flowchart/infographic to help you figure it out:


Should I Keep It On My Resume?


If you have less experience and are having trouble filling up a single page of a resume, you can ignore this post -- or you can use it to help prioritize which bullet points should go closer to the top of the resume, or even whether to put your job titles versus the names of past employers first or second.

When reading job descriptions to determine what’s relevant, look for keywords (technical terms or phrases emphasized or repeated in job descriptions, often proper nouns). Assess your experience to determine whether it’s relevant, either in terms of skills or in terms of demonstrating your exposure to a particular industry, setting or client population.

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Heather Krasna is a career coach in private practice, the Director of Career Services at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health, the author of Jobs That Matter: Find a Stable, Fulfilling Career in Public Service and a blogger for the Wiley Job Network. She has been a career coach for 15 years and has helped over 8,000 people get jobs. You can visit her website at