AI for resume tweaking?
July 7, 2024 3:21 PM   Subscribe

How do I go about using AI-like help to shape my resume for a specific job I want to apply for? Assume I know nothing, and am pretty out of touch regarding resumes and AI in general.
posted by answergrape to Work & Money (6 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
If you use ChatGPT, the simplest thing to do, is just ask it.

Say, "Can you read my resume' and help me shape it in order to get (specific job)? Here's the resume' (text goes here)" and it will spit out a version, and then you can discuss it; "Can you put more emphasis on my charity work?" or "I'd like it to have a little touch of humor"

And you can cross-examine it. "Do you really think calling myself "eumoirous" is a good move? What does that even mean?!" and so forth.

I know very little about resume's but I have spent many hours arguing with ChatGPT.
posted by The otter lady at 5:00 PM on July 7 [2 favorites]

Yeah, you just need to go to, paste your resume in, and ask it for rewrites or ideas. It may not come up with anything useful, but it's free to try. You can also try a competitor, Anthropic's Claude, which is similarly capable as ChatGPT, maybe a little better sometimes.
posted by BungaDunga at 9:13 PM on July 7 [1 favorite]

I find it most productive to get it to ask me questions or make suggestions rather than going straight to writing (though you can do the latter, the results will just be weaker). An example prompt might be like:

Here's a job post:


Here's a resume:


Come up with 10 suggestions for tailoring the resume to the job post in a professional way [insert adjectives here, may need to edit these and try again if you don't like the suggestions].

If no good suggestions, regenerate or ask for more. When there's some you like, you can ask to suggest rewrites or for best results, ask it to generate different variations of rewrites, plan the rewrites, and/or outline best practices first. Even better if you can paste in resume or writing advice that you like as an example.

Another approach if you want to put more time in might be to get it to ask you questions - e.g. "I want to tailor my resume to the above job posting, ask me questions about my experiences and any possible skills I could highlight that would be beneficial for this position". The voice input via the app can be great for this kind of brainstorming. Then once some ideas are out there, request a structured outline of the best ones, then ask for suggested edits to match.

This may seem laborious compared to just asking for improvements, but these kind of approaches can produce great results and provoke and incorporate valuable input from you as to what suggestions and approaches you prefer. You may also settle on a template prompt with a bit of experimenting that you can reuse.

Remember to be attentive to the terms of use of the product you use - the free versions of ChatGPT and the paid unless you use a certain mode can use the data for pretty much anything they want. Don't put in personal information.
posted by lookoutbelow at 9:21 PM on July 7 [2 favorites]

Here are the prompts/questions I asked ChatGTP for my latest resume revision. I tend to prefer having it revise something I've written, rather than starting from scratch.

- I'm updating my resume. I work in [role] for a nonprofit. I'm currently a [title], looking for a role at a comparable or higher level. This is my Summary section. I'd appreciate your feedback, particularly on the last bullet point.

- Do you have any suggestions for this description of the organization where I currently work?

- Could you provide some feedback on my description of my current position? I've got it structured with responsibilities listed with the regular bullet point, and accomplishments for that area listed below with the open bullet point

- Could you help me with an "elevator pitch" about myself based on the information we've worked on above?
posted by Sweetie Darling at 5:35 AM on July 8

There is a "Resume Review" custom GPT that is pretty good. While it does upsell a service at the end, it runs you through a series of dimensions and then suggests revisions based on scoring in those dimensions.
posted by Mo Nickels at 10:16 AM on July 8

One thing I have done is blown up my old resume completely. Try this: go to your favorite speech-to-text app (the built-in ones in macOS, Android, and Microsoft Office are very good) and calmly narrate each job you have had into it in natural, conversational prose, being as full and as informed as you can to talk about responsibilities, deliverables, successes, goals, etc. Then go to the best LLM you have (ChatGPT, Claude, Gemini, etc.) and tell it with your best prompt-writing that, for a specific job ad or job title, you want it to give you concise one- to three-word keywords and key phrases that are important to that job and to similar jobs. Then, take that speech-to-text transcript to the LLM and, using your best prompt-writing skills, have it summarize from your narration each job or role in a concise, bullet-pointed way, telling it to be sure to include those keywords and key phrases in the appropriate places. Then go through and edit to humanize the LLM flab and slop and give it your flair. Sometimes I will ping back and forth between ChatGPT and Gemini just to mix it up and make sure there's some kind of averaging of error and repitition, or I will run the prompts several times in one LLM, and then ask the other to combine or synthesize the results. I feel like it has surfaced a number of things I would have missed on my own, and it has made me rethink some tired phrasing that has been in my resume for a long, long time.
posted by Mo Nickels at 10:19 AM on July 8

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