Resume is the most important document you should have in order to find a job. It is your marketing tool. It advertises your skills, knowledge, experience, and competencies to an employer. The goal of having one is to create an interest in you as a potential candidate, open the door for an opportunity to be interviewed for the job, and to convince the employer that you are the right person for the job.
Gone are the days when you respond to an opening by mailing your resume to the company. Nowadays, you apply for the position online. Recruiters search online for candidates from various job boards or websites.
It is important that your resume stands out among others who are also vying for the same position.
What should be included? For a chronological format that is commonly used, below is an outline:
Heading. List your name, telephone number, email address, and home address is optional in my opinion (at a minimum, I would put the city and state where you live).
Professional objective. This is optional. If you decide you want to include this, make this brief and clear on what you want to do. It tells the prospective employer the kind of services you have to offer.
Summary Statement. Summarizes your experience, area of expertise, skills and competencies that separate you from other candidates. Make sure you use key words that match the position you are after.
Experience. Include information on your employers, dates of employments, job titles. You start with your most recent job. You would normally show at least 10 years of work history if you have worked for a very long time.
You should have specific accomplishment statements for each of the job you had held in the past. Use specific numbers or percentages to demonstrate measurable outcomes. Use short, direct sentences instead of complete sentences. Use key words and phrases that match the company’s needs as reflected in the job posting.
Skills. List your skills that are relevant to the position you are interested in. For example, proficiency in specific software or computer languages.
Educational background. List the school(s) you attended, diploma, majors attained, honors received, thesis topics, publications, if appropriate. If you were a recent graduate, GPA maybe included especially if you have achieved a high GPA.
Other relevant information such as volunteer work, affiliations, and licenses.
Here are some tips to make your resume standout:
Put white spaces to ensure reader focus their attention on relevant information in your resume. This makes your resume look less cluttered.
Use fonts that are easy to read; preferably size 12 font. Use the same font for your cover letter.
Use bullets to help the reader focus on your most outstanding achievements.
Use small blocks of text preferably no more than two lines in a bullet, or four lines in a paragraph.
Use specific numbers, percentage, and details that add credibility to your accomplishments. Quantify what you did to show how well you did it.
Use action words and phrases to demonstrate that you are a doer and an achiever.
Review your resume for grammar, spelling errors. Make sure it is concise and keep this at two pages, if possible.
Okay, now that you now completed your resume, it is time to search for a job! Today, there are numerous ways to conduct a job search. How do you do it? Don't get overwhelmed because nowadays you will have to implement several job search strategies to be successful.
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