A resume is an essential tool to advertise your skills and achievements, and to promote yourself to a potential employer. A resume should portray your skills, experience, and accomplishments in the best way possible. By your skills and experience, you can select between three types of resumes, such as functional, chronological and combination.
A chronological resume is the traditional format, and it appeals to more seasoned job seekers. A functional resume will highlight your experience as per your skills. The combination type is a blend of both the functional and chronological resume. You can consider any of these resumes to increase your chances of getting called for an interview.
Guidelines That Will Help You To Design Your Resume
Format Text of Resume
The first thing to consider for your resume is the formatting of text, and it is the first thing that your employer will see in your resume. You have to make a good impression on your potential employer; therefore, you will want to select 11/12 size font and Times New Roman font style. If you want something nicer than Times New Roman; you can choose Calibri and Arial. Sans Serifs are favorite fonts for resumes.
On some screens, the Times New Roman can be difficult to read. If you want to email your resume, you should consider Georgia because this font is easy to read electronically. You can use two fonts to highlight different parts of a resume, but it is good to limit your choice to one font only. You can write some sections in italics and bold font.
You can increase the size of the font for the introduction and headers of your resume, such as size 14 to 16, for headings. You should use solid black color to print your text and deactivate any hyperlink, such as email. There is no need to give any shade or color to your resume.
Set up Resume Page
You should have an almost one-inch margin around the page with 1.5 to 2 point line spacing. Keep the body of the resume aligned toward the left and keep your header in the middle at the top of the page.
Highlight Each Section with a Heading
You have to use a precise heading of 14 or 16-font size to highlight all relevant portions of your resume. In the initial article, you have to write your introduction, such as name, email, phone number and address. You can keep your name slightly larger than rest of the font. The standard font for your mobile number and the residential number is good.
Decide About Layout of Resume
There are three formats to write a resume, and you have to pick one of them to determine the layout of your resume. Type of job and work history will help you to determine the style and design of your resume.
These are used to present a constant growth in a particular field. These types of resumes are perfect for someone who wants to apply for the job within their career path. It will help you to present your experience and job responsibilities.
This type of resume highlights your skills and experience instead of employment history. This format is excellent for those people who are new on the job scene, have gaps in their work history or get experience from freelancing jobs or self-employment.
As its name reveals, it is a combination of functional and chronological resume. This format is used to display your particular skills and the method to acquire them. After developing a new skill, you can work in a variety of fields and this resume will be a great option for you.
Employment History in Resume
In a chronological resume, you have to write your jobs in chronological order, such as the new jobs will be written on the top. You have to write the company’s name, your designation, the location of the enterprise, your responsibilities and duties while working in this company, and dates of employment.
It is good to write the location first and make a separate sub-section for each new job. You have to write the name of the company and include any of your significant accomplishments and achievements with a short description, along with important things about the job.
Example for Chronological Resume
Blue Wheel Software House, Content Writer, Town Hall, AZ
June 2011 to Present
Writing Articles and E-books
Camp Account City, Regional Director, Mint City, TN
July 2000 to May 2011
Taught Sports, Presentation and Management
Education is Important
Your education history is equally important for you, and you will need to include it in chronological order, such as write the details of most recent institution first. You can write any apprenticeships, schools or trade degrees. If you have not graduated yet, you can write expected date of graduation.
You can create a separate sub-section for every new institution. For each listing, you should write the name of university, your degree, and area of study and address of institution.
If you had 3.5 GPA or higher, you can write it along with your degree and school name.
ABC High School, Star City, PA. 3.9 GPA. Expected graduation date: June 2017
XYZ Adult Education, Blue Area, NY. Web Design. July 2015.
Special Skills or Qualifications
After writing education and experience, you have to write your special qualifications and skills. You can select a list of skills and create a title, such as “Unique Skills” or “Special Qualifications”. Create a list to explain these things.
If you are fluent in a special language, you can write about it and write your level, such as novice, beginner, fluent, advanced, etc.
If you have special knowledge of computer programming or web designing, you should mention it in this section.
Example for Functional Resume
Dynamic: Proactively systematized volunteers to support with delivery at the communal food bank.
Accounting: Maintained precise, detailed catalogue reports at library and consequently won librarian subordinate award for Brown County.
Write Details of Awards
Once you have been recognized by an organization at an academic or professional level, you can include it in your resume.
- Richmond Essay Contest, Noble Mention, April 2015.
- Honor Roll, North High School, Senior Years, 2009 to 2011.
Write Your References
You may need 2 to 4 professional references. You will want to include information such as contact information, name, your relationship, email and addresses. This reference shouldn’t have any close relation with you, such as friends or family members, they should be professional relationships.
It is good to use your supervisor, manager or even a college professor as a reference. You should call these people in advance and ask them about using their name as a reference for the current job you are applying for. Keep your resume up-to-date and always ask for permission before writing any references.
Address: City, State and ZIP
Mobile and Landline Phone
Address: Name of City, State and ZIP
Mobile and Landline Phone
Email Your Resume
If you want to email your resume, there are two options for you, such as insert the resume directly into the body of the email, or send the resume as an attachment. Carefully review the job listing to find out the preferred method to format your resume. The format of resume is also important, such as MS Word document (.doc), plain text (.txt) and Acrobat documents (.pdf), etc. You should also include a brief cover letter in the body of the email to support your resume. Make sure to keep it short and include only basic details.
Tips to Make Your Text Shine
There are a few tips that will help you make your content shine and increase selection chances of your resume during the screening procedure to decide who receives a phone interview:
Write Titles to Grab the Attention of Employer
You have to make your job positions descriptive and interesting. Instead of writing “cashier”, you can write “customer service official”. It is good to write “administrative assistant” instead of writing “secretary”. However, be careful not to be misleading in your job title, as this will cause you to look like an untrustworthy employee. Look for ways you can make your job title interesting and eye catching.
For instance, the word “Manager” is not enough to describe your job because you have to explain executive or sales manager. Describe your title in a way to explain your job duties.
Strategically Use Keywords
Many employers use special software to scan your resume and this software often determines the presence of keywords in your resume. Your resume is screened on the basis of these keywords. Make sure to include all important keywords in your resume. There are a few common keywords that may prove beneficial for you to use. You can use them accordingly:
- Productivity improvement
- Strategic planning
- Organizational design
- New media
- Infrastructure development
- Microsoft Word
- Change management
- Instructional materials
- Competitive market
- Effective communication skills
- Investor relations
- Project management
- Customer retention
- Business development
- Cost reduction
- Long-range planning
If you want to include particular keywords, it is a good idea to scan the posted job description to make a list of the required skills. You should use 3 to 4 keywords from the job description in your professional resume. However, there is no need to write every keyword in the resume because it may make your resume suspicious.
Action Verbs for the Description of Accomplishments and Responsibilities
Action verbs are important for your resume to highlight important abilities and skills from your previous positions. Select verbs that can pronounce your responsibilities and make sure to start the portrayals of job duties with the help of action verbs. For instance, a receptionist may use action verbs, such as “provided”, “assisted” and “scheduled”. Try to use action words to make your resume attractive and powerful.
Proofread Your Resume
Proofreading is a good idea to make your resume free from errors and typos. Instead of proofreading your resume several times, you can have someone else proofread your resume after you have read through it. Try to use a professional person from the industry to proofread your resume, since they have related experience.
- A resume full of grammar and spelling errors will get your resume discarded. The employer will not even read your experience and skills.
- You should keep an eye on grammatical errors, mistakes, contact information, plurals, and wrong use of apostrophes, typos and possessives.
- Double checking will help you to remove all possible errors and rectify the format of your resume. It will help you to add any important information to increase the value of your resume.
These resumes are gaining popularity among job seekers and sometimes, a company also request a video resume. These resumes are a good option to showcase your experience and skills. It will help you give a real sense of your personality to potential employers. This type of resume is not for everyone because in conservative and traditional fields, these resumes will not work. Try to keep your resume professional, short and focused to explain your accomplishments. Keep it in mind that it is a video resume, not a song. Keep your background simple and professional.
Personal Interests in Resume
You can make a section with a heading “Personal Interest” to show yourself as an all-rounder. This section is useful for potential employers to start the interview and breakdown the ice. Try to write some productive interests, such as accounting, reading, painting, etc. There is no need to write about napping, gossiping, watching TV, etc.
Reading, camping, ceramics, automotive repair, soccer, carpentry
Mistakes to Avoid in Your Resume
Do you know that the mistakes you make in your resume can negatively affect how your resume is received? Resume are the quickest way for potential employers to screen the skills and abilities of a candidate. While designing a resume, it is important to focus on not having typos and grammatical errors. It is the biggest mistake to send a resume full of errors because the potential employer will not consider you for the position. You have to proofread your resume at least twice before sending it.
Here are the top 10 mistakes that should be avoided while designing a resume:
(1) Spelling and Grammatical Errors
You need to check spelling and grammar before sending the resume to a potential hiring manager. It is hard to notice your own mistakes; therefore, it is a good idea to take the help of some friends and family members to read through your resume. It also helps to read it out loud to hear your own mistakes.
(2) Absence of Keywords in the Resume
Your resume should have matching words to those that appear in the job listing, so that your resume can easily pass the screening process. If your resume doesn’t have the right keywords, then you will not be able to get the chance to interview.
(3) An Outdated Resume
An outdated resume may give an impression to a hiring manager that you are old-fashioned. You need to update your resume after reading the job description according to the requirements of the job. Make sure to update your skills and work history section. Make sure to write your current skills and computer knowledge in the resume.
(4) Excessive Details in Resume
It is not good to include everything about yourself in the resume. You have to write important highlights in the academic and skills section. Use short paragraphs and bullet points to increase its readability. You should write only the latest qualifications and work experience and leave some things to be discuss during the interview.
(5) A Wrong Objective Statement
An objective statement should match the job description because you have to focus on the target job. Many job seekers leave their objective statement the same for every position they apply for and kill their chances of a job interview. You have to make an interesting and compelling objective statement.
(6) Career Summary is Different than the Requirements of Job
An incompatible career summary is not good for a professional resume. Your resume should always have a compatible career summary and write all relevant skills after reading the job description to increase the quality of your resume.
(7) Wrong Presentation of Accomplishments
Accomplishments and achievements are important for your resume, but you have to be very careful in the selection of achievements because it should be relevant to your skills and the current job description that you are applying for.
(8) Mundane and Irrelevant Duties in the Resume
You need to start with related skills and start with buzzwords so that you can explain to potential employers that you are perfect for the job. You have skills and can perform all job duties in the best way possible.
(9) Unable to Quantify Accomplishments
There is no need to write empty phrases to praise yourself because these will not be considered by potential employers. You should use figures to provide concrete evidence and support for your accomplishments.
(10) Keep Everything Natural instead of Becoming Extra Modest
You have to share your awards and credits that you have received during your job, such as promoted to associate manager after increasing the annual donations by 30%.
Your resume should contain only true details because any falsified information can increase complications in your life. Potential employers look for honest and modest employees instead of a liar or fraudulent person. You should only share true details and write a powerful objective statement in the start of your resume.
That is it. The resume writing process in a nutshell.
I hope this article has offered you insight into the overall process for creating your resume and promoting yourself to potential employers.
If you have any good or even bad experiences with your resume writing or job seeking you would like to share, opinions or questions that you want feedback on, please leave us a comment at the contact link below, we would love to hear it.