A resume is the window that reflects your potential at a job interview. It provides an overview of your experience and skills and is the first form of contact with the interviewer. So it is important to draft an amazing resume that would leave no space for doubts. It should be an eye opener to your potential employer and echo your skills and experiences in the most attractive manner.
Before you get started, keep in mind that writing a resume should be done with utmost care and concentration. Never treat the task lightly. Before you start writing it, outline a sketch of what you would include based on your skills, experiences, job market you wish to apply for and criteria the positions may require. You may need to stress on the following points when doing this:
Research: Depending on the type of job you are applying for, run a background check on etiquettes followed in the field. Many professions have their own style of resume writing that is the accepted standard in that particular field. Make sure yours is abreast with these latest trends, by looking at sample resume templates of qualified people in the field.
Highlight: Highlight all your special skills that will be advantageous in the filed you are applying for. Emphasize similar work experiences you’ve held, elaborating particular on trainings you may have received on the job. It is also advisable to highlight extra-curricular activities (sports, organizations you belong to etc.) that might seem advantageous during the interview process. Most companies look for a balance in academics and other qualifications such as sports achievements and positions held in social organizations.
To-the-point: Avoid lengthy descriptions in your resume. Give information preferably in bullet form, i.e. to the point, highlighting special qualifications/skills, making them visible at a glance. Lengthy, unwanted details will make it boring for the reader, and often make them overlook other, more important information.
Honesty: Be honest about the content you include in your resume. Avoid exaggerations at all times. A dishonest, but impressive resume may win you a job, but it cannot guarantee that you will keep that job, as you may not be able to perform according to your required qualifications.
Information Flow: Organize the flow of information on your resume. Haphazardly produced data may mirror a disorganized personality. Remember, your resume reflects your character to an extent.
Customize: Changing your resume format according to the particular job you are applying for is always advisable. Certain jobs may require you to highlight particular information where others may rather have these details omitted altogether. Review the job you are applying for, reading the job description thoroughly and then decide which parts you want to omit and which to emphasize.
Now that you have covered the ground work and have a rough sketch with you, start writing. Include as much adjectives as possible, but avoid over abundance and repetitions. Start writing in a positive attitude; your frame of mind may reflect on your writing. If you are in a bad mood or feeling low, leave the task aside and start when you feel more cheerful and optimistic.
Make sure you have enough time at hand to devote for this task. A resume cannot be written in a rush. It requires a relaxed, indulgent atmosphere. Chose a quite, undisturbed time of day, preferable late night or early morning (depends on if you are a night person or a morning person) so that you are not disturbed by unwanted deviations.
The order of content in a resume can vary. You do not have to follow a particular order, unless stated. You can follow any standard order that makes sense to you, as long as the necessary information is provided in an intelligible flow.
It is imperative to include following information in your resume (not necessarily in this order):
Heading: Head your resume with details about you, starting from your full name (as appearing on your academic records), current address and contact numbers (make sure they are accurate and you are reachable on the given numbers), e-mail address (if you check it regularly) and any other contact information.
Objective: This is the key point of your resume which supports the rest of your data and the job path you seek. Make it simple and concise and avoid clichés to make yours unique. If you have several objectives, or if you are looking for several job options in different fields, it’s better to change the objective section of your resume accordingly.
Education: List your academia in order of achievement, i.e. latest accomplishments on top. Include formal programs such as degrees or masters, other minor courses, as well as on-the-job-trainings. Be consistent in the layout you follow, either giving the name of college/institute first, then the name of the course followed by description of course or whichever order you prefer and makes sense to you.
Work Experience: Use a chronological order to list out the jobs you have held so far. Here too, be a bit descriptive, highlighting the responsibilities you have handled, special achievements during your tenures and other information that may seem useful. If you have gaps in between jobs, do not give specific time periods of work; only state the number of years/months at each job.
Skills: Use this section to highlight the special abilities or expertise you have acquired over the years, either on job or on academia. You can add a bit of description to this part; emphasizing the avenues in which these skills have been useful to you. This section also can vary according to your job target, so change it accordingly. And use a format that best highlights the vital information.
Extra-curricular Activities: Use this section to state all non-academic achievements that will reflect your abilities. Avoid unnecessary information or minor achievements and keep this section concise and to the point. Use this section to your maximum advantage by basing it around your best achievements that will be appreciated by the employer.
Usually a resume is ended with a statement such as ‘I hereby declare the information stipulated above are true and accurate to the best of my knowledge’ followed by the signature of the candidate. If you are forwarding the resume via e-mail you may not require the use of a signature.
Re-read your resume once complete and check for errors in format, grammar and spelling. It is advisable to re-read more than once as you might overlook certain mistakes. An accurate, well furnished resume is bound to make a good impression on the interviewer, providing you with an advantage even before encountering them in person.
Lose all reserve, with these tips in mind, you are sure to furnish a top-notch resume that will take you places in your selected field of work!