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How to write a successful resume


A resume is a self-advertisement that, when done properly, shows how your skills, experience, and achievements match the requirements of the job you want. Here are some tips for writing a good resume.


resume template

1. Format your text. The first thing that a potential employer will see on your resume is the text. For that reason, it is very important that you make the first impression right. Choose a professional font in size 11 or 12. Times New Roman is the classic serif font, while Arial and Calibri are two of the better choices for sans-serif. Even though sans serif fonts are more popular for resume, Yahoo cites Helvetica as the best font to use for your resume.


2. Set up the page. Your page should have one inch margins all the way around with 1.5 or 2 point line spacing.


3. Create your heading. This is the section at the top of your resume which gives your contact information including your name, address, email, and phone number. Your name should be in a slightly larger size - either 14 or 16 point font. List your home and cell phone numbers.


4. Provide your education history. Same as with your jobs, you should list all of your education in chronological order with your most recent schooling first. Include any college degrees, trade schools, or apprenticeships you might have participated in. If you graduated with a degree, list the name of the degree as well as the year you received it. If you have not yet graduated, simply state the years you have attended the program as well as an expected graduation date.

  • For each listing, give the university/ program name, their address, and your degree or area of study.

  • If you had a cumulative GPA of 3.5 or higher, be sure to list it along with your school/degree information.

5. List your employment history. As this is a chronological resume, your jobs should be listed in reverse chronological order with your most recent employment first. Include the name of the company, its location, your title, your duties and responsibilities while working there, and the dates that you were employed there.

  • It may be beneficial to list your title first, to show off your position in each job. You can also choose to list the company name first. Regardless of what you choose, be consistent down your entire list.

  • For each listing, write a “major achievements” or “accomplishments” section with a brief description of something important that you accomplished for that job.

6. Give special qualifications or skills. Once you’ve listed the most important information - your work experience and education - you can essentially choose to list anything else you find important. Create a section titled “Special Skills” or “Unique Qualifications” with a list of these things.

  • If you are fluent in more than one language, list the multiple languages here. Be sure to make note of your level of knowledge - for example, beginner, intermediate, novice, advanced, fluent, etc.

  • If you are well versed in a special area of work that other applicants might not be - such as computer programming - be sure to include your level of expertise here.

Specific Points to make your resume more valuable.

  • Create titles that will catch the employer’s eye.

  • Use keywords strategically

  • Use action verbs and active voice to describe your responsibilities and accomplishments.

  • Spell check and proofread your resume