Does Your Resume Look like Tom Brady’s College Grad Resume from 1999?


A few weeks ago football star Tom Brady posted his resume, from when he graduated college, on Facebook. The resume dated back to 1999 just before he’d been picked up in the NFL draft and would go on to make history. I was asked to provide commentary on the resume by eFinancialCareers immediately after it was posted.

What immediately struck me as I looked at Brady’s resume from back then, is that unfortunately college career center resumes still look the same! I see week after week, my clients send me their college child’s resumes from respectable schools, and they resumes still look like Brady’s from 1999. In fact, they haven’t changed much in 15 years! These young adults are entering the job market with outdated resumes and it is contributing to them being under- and unemployed, which adversely affects their lifetime earnings….Tragic!

I share this story because it brings up another observation…I have working professionals and executives send me their resumes for review on a regular basis. More often than not, my first comment is, “Is this the resume you had from graduating college and you have just added your experience to it?” And the answer is often, “yes.”

You must update your resume periodically. What worked for you 10 – 20 years ago isn’t going work now. Times change and the same applies for resumes. Below you’ll find some reasons why it’s time to update your resume to a progressive style and/or arm your college grad child with the most effective career marketing documents to ensure their lifetime earnings potential has the strongest start.


Competition is fierce.

The sluggish economy left many people looking for new jobs or opportunities to move up the career ladder. While things are looking up, we still have some residual effects we’re dealing with in the form of too many people and not enough jobs.

By updating your resume you reduce the risk of it being thrown in the trash. It’s far too many people who miss an opportunity because their resume looks the same way it did in the 1980’s. Don’t make the same mistake.

One way to update your resume so that you can wipe out competition is make sure to use achievements based bullets. These bullet points highlight your accomplishments and paint a crystal clear picture of what you can do on the job.


It’s a digital age.

Long gone are the days of looking through the newspaper and mailing in a resume. Everything is now digital, whether it’s setting up a LinkedIn profile of sending your resume through an Applicant Tracking System (ATS) online.

This means a lot of things for your resume. First, you must use keywords in order to actually be seen. This applies to both LinkedIn and sending your resume through a website.

Second, you need to go mobile. There are a ton of great smartphone apps you can use to update your resume and send it on the go.


The employer’s time is more limited than ever.

Employers are busier than ever. As such resume updates seem to be moving in the direction of making their lives easier.

For example, make sure you actually have a summary on your resume so the employer doesn’t have to guess what you want. Quite frankly they won’t even bother doing some digging to figure it out so it’s in your best interest to tell them upfront.


The resume as we know it is changing.

2015 is gearing up to be a big year for resume changes. From not having a resume at all to using multimedia, the resume as we know it may be changing forever.

If you don’t get with the program you run the risk of looking like you’re not forward thinking – an obstacle many executives face on the job hunt.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed at the thought of all these changes check out our recent article on 2015 resume trends. We break down all the changes for you so you don’t have to troll the web looking for it yourself.

Let’s only party like it’s 1999 (yes, I am a Prince fan!) and not have career documents looking like they are from that era.


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