A good resume will effectively summarize your knowledge, skills, and work experience and help set you apart from other applicants. Watch this resume writing video or read on below for our top resume writing tips.
Resume Writing Tips
Be creative and truthful when creating your resume. It’s always a good idea to ask a close friend for help as they can often see positive characteristics in you that you don’t see. Whenever possible, customize your resume for each position you are applying for. This is your best chance to explain how your knowledge, skills, and experience match what the employer is looking for. Read the job description carefully and include information about yourself that directly addresses the qualifications mentioned.
Types of Resumes
Choose the type of resume that best presents your qualifications. Some examples are:
Chronological resumes provide a history of your past employment and work experience. This format works well if you haven’t changed jobs often or had any gaps in your employment. We recommend this type of resume if you have a steady work record and experience that directly relate to the position. Click here for a sample of a chronological resume.
Functional resumes provide a collective summary of your education, skills, and work experience and emphasizes those skills rather than employment or direct experience. This format is preferred when you have an extensive work history or no work history if you are changing careers, if you had a period of time when you held several short-term jobs, or if you had a substantial gap in your employment. Click here for a sample of a functional resume.
This resume format combines the best elements of chronological and functional resumes:
- Like in a chronological resume, you will present detailed employment history information that demonstrates how your skills and accomplishments on jobs will match (or exceed) what an employer wants to hire; plus
- Like a functional resume, you will provide detailed information about the specific skill sets you possess that will match (or exceed) what an employer wants to hire
What to Include In Your Resume
- Make sure to include information about the following:
- Your education level
- Special training you have completed
- A list of your abilities in the use of equipment, tools, software applications, etc.
- Previous work duties, experience, and special projects
- Special recognitions and awards you have received
- Community and volunteer service
- Specific accomplishments from the jobs you’ve held (things that you did for past employers that made money/saved money/saved time/solved problems for their companies)
- Your contact information.
What Not to Include In Your Resume
Do NOT include information that indicates:
- Marital or family status
- Religious beliefs
- Political beliefs
- Medical conditions
- Disability status
When describing your work experience, give details of your most important duties and responsibilities, along with accomplishments instead of just listing your job title.
ALWAYS get permission before using someone’s name as a reference. It is also helpful to have some idea of what they will say about you.
When you contact them for permission to use them as job references, tell them why you deserve to be hired for the job(s) you’re seeking.
Proofread, proofread, and then proofread again! Small mistakes on your resume can cost you the chance to interview.