Are YOU Still Using a Big Block Resume?

By Kathryn Troutman, Federal Career Coach™,
Author, Federal Resume Guidebook, 6th Ed.
Feb. 14th, 2018

“I Didn’t Know Resumix Is Gone!”
No More Big Block Resumes!


Even though it has been FIVE years since the HR system changeover, employees at DOD agencies are still using the BIG BLOCK resume format. They still think that Resumix is being used to scan for keywords. NOT…. “Human” Human Resources Specialists are reading resumes with their eyes…. looking for specialized experience, evidence of KSAs, and accomplishments. DOD employees do not know that the RESUMIX system was gone from Army and Navy civilian jobs and the BIG BLOCK IS NOT A GOOD FORMAT FOR TODAY’S HR SPECIALISTS AND MANAGERS! See a Before & After Sample Here.

Back in 2012, I brought a cake to my Ten Steps certification class that said BYE BYE CPOL RESUMIX and then another cake to a second class that said BYE BYE NAVY CHART. My Ten Steps classes celebrated the ending of the two important keyword resume systems for almost all DOD job applications. CPOL Resumix and US Navy CHART Resumix systems started in 2000 and ended in 2012!

Even though it has been three years since the changeover, just last week the employees in my class were shocked to hear that the big block resume and RESUMIX system was gone from Army civilian jobs. They said, “I did not know that Resumix was gone. I did not know that the big block was not the current format. This is all new to me.”

I broke the news to them that all of the DOD Resumix resume review systems are eliminated in 2012. Army and Navy switched over to the USAJOBS system, and the now resumes are reviewed by human HR specialists and managers.

THE BIG BLOCK IS GONE: Previously, Resumix provided artificial intelligence and a database of words that DOD created for keywords. Now with USAJOBS, the keywords are read by Human Resources specialists-real humans.

THE BIG BLOCK FORMAT WAS ONE GIANT PARAGRAPH: It was up to 3,000 characters in length that included all of the duties, responsibilities, and accomplishments. Paulina Chen’s articleHelp Me Hire a Minion, shows you the difference between the Big Block and the Outline Format, which is much easier to read and is preferred by Human Resources specialists.

THE NEW OUTLINE FORMAT IS 5 TO 7 SMALL PARAGRAPHS: The HR specialists do not want to read one large paragraph. They need and want the resume to feature the specialized experience and keywords from the job announcement.

EACH SMALL PARAGRAPH INCLUDES HEADLINES WITH KEYWORDS: The headlines are keywords from the vacancy announcement. Each vacancy announcement has a different set of keywords that the HR specialist will want to see quickly in your resume. Here are a few articles that discuss keywords for your federal resume in the outline format.

MAKE YOUR ACCOMPLISHMENTS STAND OUT: Supervisors want to read specific examples. For your most recent positions, after your duties and responsibilities, highlight and feature two or three of your accomplishments, up to five total accomplishments.

SEE AN EXAMPLE: We can show you exactly how to do these steps in our sample Outline Format Federal Resume. Take a look and get started on fixing your resume! Your resume will stand out for better results of getting Best Qualified, Referred, selected for an Interview, and Hired.

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