Is Sydney highlighting potential disqualifiers?
Yes! Sydney’s education section jumps out at you as it is the first section that is not filled with content, so your eyes are immediately drawn to that section. In this section, she included her high school diploma and the university she attended with the words “no degree obtained” afterward. If Sydney completed a considerable amount of college (i.e., two-plus years), then I would present this as “Completed Two Years Toward a Bachelor’s Degree”; if she did not then, I would omit this section entirely.
Is Sydney’s résumé optimally formatted? No! With the entry-level format, Arial font, and lackluster aesthetic, nothing about Sydney’s résumé compels people to read it. Instead, Sydney should create an engaging visual aesthetic that draws the reader in. Avoiding overused templates is a wise decision in this economy when a hiring manager is literally receiving hundreds of résumés; when many use templates, the résumés all start looking the same. Lastly, by including references on the résumé, she has reinforced there is little content to present to even make a full one-page résumé. References should be presented when requested.
With so much room for improvement, Sydney has no idea how successful her job search could be, given she has not been marketing her candidacy with an effective tool. Revamping her résumé, I feel, will turn around her job search results!
Would you like ‘Dear Sam’ to critique your résumé? For a critique, send résumé to firstname.lastname@example.org