Making a resume or CV is a great way to start looking for a new job. Resumes are used to highlight your work history, education, and skills that make you a good candidate for the job.
They are also how employers see if they want to interview you for the job. Since interviews are one of the final steps in the hiring process, a good resume will get you there!
The main components of a resume are your personal information, education, experience/employment history, skills, and contact information. Some include other sections as well.
Resumes can be formatted in different ways. The most popular ones are: Arial font with Times New Roman font size between 12 and 14, one-page or two-page, with either vertical or horizontal orientation. These do not necessarily match between Arial and Times New Roman fonts!
This article will go over some tips on how to make your resume look more professional using some of these formatting differences.
The content of your resume is very important. Make sure to include all relevant education and experience you have that pertain to the job you are applying for.
Also, make sure to include any volunteer work or other skills you have that would benefit the job. Companies like to see that you have skills outside of what they are paying for.
A part-time job can also be included, however, only include the details that pertain to the job you are applying for. If they ask for two years of experience, then only include two years of experience- do not overload your resume with older information.
Make sure all of your information is correct and updated! A mistake in any email addresses can prevent you from getting an interview.
Make sure your resume is not too long! Two pages is the recommended length by employers. Any additional information past two pages may diminish your chances.
A section on your resume for skills is a must-have section. This is where you will list all of the skills you have that are relevant to the job for which you are applying.
Unfortunately, many recruiters report that many resumes include inappropriate skills, are too generic, or lack sufficient detail. This can lead to your resume being passed over during the screening process.
What’s more, a survey by America’s Job Exchange found that 55% of employers said they found gaps in skills between what a candidate claimed in their resume and what they demonstrated in the interview.
Make sure to only list skills that you have proven proficiency in using and do not simply add them because you think it will help you get the job. Keep them specific and prove that you have used them in the past or would use them in this new position.
A section on your resume for education is a must. This is where you list any and all education you have completed, such as college degrees and certification courses.
Most jobs require some form of education, so be sure to include all of your classes, seminars, lectures, and the like. Even if you did not complete a degree or certification, if you learned something valuable during the learning process, add it to your resume.
If you are re-entering the job market after some time away, your education can be a strong point to emphasize in your resume. Showing that you have learned new skills and gained knowledge over time can be a good feature.
Make sure to list your schools by full name followed by location if applicable. This makes it more professional looking and recognizable for the employer.
Most resumes start with a section about your work experience. Most recommend listing your most recent job first, and then listing any other jobs in order of length of time since you’ve worked in the field.
However, if you’re making a resume for an entry-level job, start with your most recent internship or job and list your other experiences below that in chronological order.
How long you’ve worked at a place is more relevant than what you did, so don’t worry too much about organizing by job title. Your current employer probably doesn’t want you to list them as a reference, after all!
If you have been at several companies for a short time, organize your work experience according to how long you have been at each company rather than by job title. This way it will look like you have been at the same company for a longer period of time.
If you have skills that are related to the job you are applying for, then include those skills in your resume. For example, if you are a teacher, include some of the things your students have learned from you.
If you are an employee at a company, list the tasks that you have accomplished while working there. If you manage a department, list the changes you have made that improved the organization.
Listing these accomplishments will help strengthen your resume and make it more appealing to employers. It will also help prove why you are qualified for the job that you are seeking.
Any volunteer work can also be included on your resume. If you have organized events or meetings, listed the numbers of people that participated and what was achieved as a result. This shows an employer that you can organize and manage people and/or events.
Make sure to keep these things concise and professional though.
A section of your resume called personal attributes refers to your personality traits, qualities, and skills that do not relate to the job you are applying for. These are important to include in your resume because they show your potential for the job.
For example, if you are applying for a marketing position, then having strong communication skills and an enthusiasm for marketing is a personal attribute that would be included on your resume.
Your personal attributes can include things like being creative, organized, team-oriented, dependable, motivated, and so on. Some companies even ask you to write a small section about these qualities as part of the interview process.
If you have no experience in the field you are applying for, then including personal attributes can help make up for that.
Including a photo on your resume is becoming more and more common. Some companies ask that you include a photo with your application, whereas other companies do not mention it at all.
If you have a professional profile online, such as LinkedIn, then including a photo may be warranted, as that is how people usually connect with you. Having a photo on your resume will help people recognize you and connect you to your profile online.
However, it is important to note that including a photo on your resume may lead to discrimination against you due to your appearance. People may subconsciously judge you based on your looks and this may hurt your chances of getting the job.
If you decide to include a photo on your resume, make sure it is of high quality and represents you accurately.
Resumes should be written in a standard font, usually Times New Roman or Arial. Other fonts, like Comic Sans or Papyrus, are frowned upon as they are considered unprofessional.
Resume should be written in a standard font size, usually around 11 or 12 point. If you include an impressive number of credentials and/or a long work history, then you can up the size to 12 or even 13 point.
Smaller font sizes may save you some ink, but they also look less formal. Larger sizes may make your resume look more casual, which is not what you want!
Regardless of whether you use Arial, Calibri, Century Old Style or any other old-fashioned typefaces; avoid using any that are decorative or have special effects. Simple is best!
Use either a standard black ink or color ink to highlight sections of your resume. Do not use fancy colors such as purple or orange as they are less professional looking.