1. List those acronyms after your name! One professional made the mistake of spelling out each certification, rather than providing the letters. Needless to say, he didn't make it past HR. Be sure to include verbiage that hiring managers who may be non-IT would understand.
2. Create a strong, professional online presence. Specifically LinkedIn, but do not doubt the power of other social networks. Keep personal chatter to a minimum and highlight your career-oriented self, and then don't be afraid to provide links within your resume.
3. Focus on quantifiable results, not generic duties.
4. Do your research. Learn about the company and customize your resume to meet their specific needs and requirements. Be prepared to showcase your knowledge of the organization during the interview process.
5. Really, you need to create a unique resume and cover letter for every position you apply for.
6. Try to identify the companies weaknesses, the areas that they may not even realize they need you in, and convince them of why they must hire you.
7. Create the resume that is the best fit for you. If you have little experience, don't go over 2 pages and highlight volunteer work and activities. If you have extensive experience, make sure to cover what you need to, but don't go overboard, and skip unnecessary traditions, such as your objective.
8. Tell them your plan i.e. "I will follow up within the week." and do as promised. Be sure to thank them for their consideration, and provide prompt responses.
9. Technical skills are obviously important, but soft skills are becoming more pertinent than ever. Include relevant and noteworthy soft skills in your resume.
10. If instructions for applying are provided, follow them exactly. Read carefully! If they say no phone calls, do not call. If they require a specific subject, make sure you provide that. If you cannot follow the instructions in the application process, why would they think you can handle the responsibilities of the actual career?
11. Keep the best stuff at the top.
12. Don't give away all your secrets and details, leave them wanting more. Give them a reason to call you in to the interview!