Even the best writers need a little help now and then writing about themselves. The hardest part of writing a resume’ is knowing where to start. A resume’ is a tell-tale of what you have accomplished. You will need to show enthusiasm yet maintain professionalism. As an experienced Human Resources professional I have reviewed thousands of resumes’. Everything from the good to the bad and even the ugly. The following steps should help get you started on the right track to getting that job!
- Write or type out a rough draft of your past jobs, education and special skills. Remember to include volunteer work as well. Your rough draft should list all the tasks and duties performed at every job held. Each job should contain a 2-line summary describing your title and main duties. It should be followed with 3-4 single line descriptions in a bulleted format. Follow the old writer’s rule-no more than 10 words per sentence. A professional resume’ is clear and easy to follow.
- Tailor your resume’ to job description, if possible. Highlight matching skills and keywords but be honest! Most employers conduct background searches. In the last 3 years, I have noticed an increase in the use of background search firms by companies. Do not jeopardize your status now or in the future by creating a fictional resume’.
- Make sure your resume’ is grammatically correct–without typos! If you are not a strong writer hire a resume’ writer. They usually do not charge much to review your resume’. Use the same size font throughout the text in your resume’. The only exception is your name which should be a few fonts larger. You want the hiring staff to remember your name, right? Use only one physical address, phone number and email address. And be sure to use correct contact information to make sure you get a response.
- Use plain white or beige stationary to create a professional resume’. Keep resume’ to two pages maximum. Do not use personal or flowery stationary. Same rule applies to the use of silly fonts, pictures or graphics on your resume’. You want your qualifications to stand out not the pink butterfly stationary. And yes, I have seen a resume’ on such stationary. And no, it probably will not get you the job. Keep it simple!
- On a final note do not add references to your resume’, age yourself by adding dates to educational information or include memberships or hobbies that are irrelevant to position. References should be supplied on a separate reference sheet.
Finally, remember to add a cover letter to highlight skills that could not fit in your 1-2 page resume’. Please keep in mind that your resume’ is the first impression you are making to the recruiter or hiring manager. You want to make sure that you impress them with your skills in a professional resume’. Most recruiters spend about 1 or 2 minutes reading each resume’. You have one shot at impressing them. Make sure you give it your best!