Christopher White's resume was crammed with buzzwords, jargon and what executive resume writer, social media and career strategist Donald Burns calls \u201ctechno-gibberish.\u201d\n\n\nWhite attempted to outline his extraordinary career path with quantifiable results, numbers and percentages, but he succeeded only in confusing potential readers and likely dooming his resume to the \u201cmaybe\u201d or \u201cno\u201d pile of any HR department, recruiter or hiring manager.\n\n\nBurns, the head of Executive Promotions, says that even after numerous read-throughs he wasn't clear about the message White was trying to send.\n\nWhen IT Resumes Are Like Teflon \u2013 Nothing Sticks\n\n"Chris's resume was crowded and confusing to read," says Burns. "I read it a few times \u2013 start to finish \u2013 but like Teflon, nothing stuck. I wasn't able to pull out anything memorable," he says.\n\n\nIt was a classic 'jigsaw resume,' Burns says, with a candidate showing the pieces of a career, but without assembling those pieces into a logical, clear picture that outlines where they've been and where they want to go.\n\n\n"If you send a resume like this, a bunch of puzzle pieces without a complete picture and no 'success story,' a reader likely will skip to the end and dump the resume in the 'No' pile. If you're lucky, you'll end up in the 'maybe' pile!" he says.\n\nLost in Translation\n\nAlthough White's resume was written in English, Burns says it was so difficult to read and cryptic that he felt at times like he was translating from Chinese. For example, Burns says in some instances White used \u201ccost containment\u201d when he really meant \u201ccost cutting.\u201d And when the resume cited a \u201cproductivity improvement\u201d of $3 million or an \u201cenhancement\u201d of $1 million, White simply meant he was able to cut costs by $3 million or $1 million, Burns says.\n\n >> download \nCIO.com Resume Makeover White Original\n\u00a0\n\n\nThis obfuscation was one of the major issues with White's resume. He deliberately used buzzwords and jargon when plain English would have sufficed, and the resume also lacked a sense of the bigger picture into which White's job roles fit, Burns says.\n\n\n"Chris's resume was crowded with numbers and percentages but lacked a context for those. And because of those issues, it was very difficult to read \u2013 that's a common problem with most of the resumes I see, but especially IT resumes," Burns says. "For example, when you read it closely, many items on the original resume make no sense in English \u2013 it's 'techno-gibberish.\u201d\n\n\nUnder White's IT Supply Chain Leader [2002-2004] job title and description, the original resume says the following:\n\n"PROJECT TURNAROUND: Reversed a failing productivity management application rollout by recalibrating project operations"\n\n\u201cThis makes no sense in English!" Burns says.\n\n\nAnother example from the original resume:\n\n\u201c\u2026increased productivity $2.5 million through \u2026"\n\nHow do you increase productivity by $2.5 million? You can't measure productivity using that metric. That makes no sense," Burns says.\n\n\nThe new resume correctly explains that the company saved $2.5 million by implementing logistics software, clearing up the problem and offering a better glimpse of White's responsibility and decision-making abilities in that position.\n\n >> download \nCIO.com Resume Makeover White Makeover\n\n\nDuring Burns' and White's two-hour phone consultation, Burns says they stepped through the resume line-by-line to define terms, clarify responsibilities and hone the focus of the resume.\n\n\n"I resolved the clarity problem through intense, line-by-line editing of this resume from 'techno-gibberish' into plain English that most people can digest," Burns says. Once the language issue was resolved, Burns turned his attention to shifting the focus of the resume.\n\n\nThough White's official title is Director of IT for Marketing and Refining, he's actually been functioning as a CIO, a fact Burns confirmed during his and White's consultation.\n\n\n"Chris told me he wanted to be perceived as a CIO-level candidate despite his current title," says Burns. "Based on what he told me, it's clear he's functioning as a bona fide CIO and his resume isn't reflecting those increased responsibilities," he says.\n\nPositioned for Success\n\nTo address this, Burns added "CIO Equivalent" next to White's title, a perfectly legitimate way, Burns says, to showcase what White's actual responsibilities were, even though his title didn't reflect that. In addition, Burns and White added Chief Information Officer to White's top headline to indicate where White's career aspirations lie.\n\n\n"It's perfectly legitimate to state your career target at the top," says Burns. "Fifteen years ago, this used to be where candidates would state their Objective, but that's no longer common practice on a resume," he says. To add context to each job role White held, Burns used a bold blue color to set apart the summary paragraphs.\n\n\n"Throughout the resume, you\u2019ll notice the summary paragraphs in bold blue color. These add some context to what he was doing \u2013 much of it was strategically important business strategy \u2013 above and beyond IT," Burns says. White's now perfectly positioned to move into an aptly titled CIO role from his current position, Burns says, now that the puzzle has been solved and White's resume is speaking the right language.\n\n\n"That\u2019s how you position yourself for your true career level \u2013 by giving a plain-English explanation of what you've done, what you\u2019re doing and where you want to go \u2013 with no techno-gibberish or 'business-ese,'" Burns says.