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How to Write a Resume?

A resume in short will list the necessary facts about your life in relation to the job that you are applying for in an easy to read format. It therefore goes without saying that the first step in writing your resume is to assemble all these facts.

Keep these points in mind when writing the resume.

When wring the resume use active verbs and short words that give the information required of you in a short hand manner and at the same time keeping the flowing in a conversational manner.

Instead of saying; for example “Implementation of various project-management techniques resulted in above-average productivity”, the phrase “Managed three projects, resulting in 32% higher profits” would be way more relevant.

The first statement is more journalistic, and uses the words: the, a, an and my. However the language in a resume should more like the one that is used in a telegram.

The best way to writing a readable resume is by making two drafts, the first, rough draft, head with no much thought as to how they sound. From here is where the good draft will be got.

After a revision to this rough draft, and gradually eliminating material that don’t fit in, what you get is a Guaranteed Resume.

These are the most important parts in a /order of the resume.

1. Writing Resume Objective/Summary

The objective or Summary is a two or three lines statement. The size of this should never under any circumstances make you underestimate its importance. Spend as much time on this section as necessary to create a powerful opening for your resume.

Also of note is that your career goals can always be talked of in your interview. Don’t add to the count of the words in the resume with it. In that case, phrases like: “seeking a chance for advancement,” or “where my skills will be utilized,” or “where I can further my career” should be avoided.

While maintaining enough flexibility so that the resume can be used to apply for any job that might even remotely match you skills and experience focus on the employer and his or her needs.

Focus on the job you want and thus tell the employers what job you can do, but not force them to think of a job that might suit you.

2. Career Profile

This section is also called a Professional Profile, Technical Skills (for programmers and other technical types), Highlights or Qualifications section. At this point in the resume you should point out four to six bulleted paragraphs that cover your best skills, as well as some of the best things you’ve ever done on the job that are relevant to the job under review with the main aim being to get the employers to call you.

In this part include: skills, experience, achievements etc that reinforce the fact you are the best person for the job you are applying. Include also the technical skills that will help you do the job e.g. for a writer such will include: knowledge of Operating Systems and other application packages.

These two sections are what are of major important to a resume.

3. Quotes in Resume

Although they are important catalysts to employer’s curiosity, and also as proves to your claims these should be sparingly used. Quotes make your potential employer more likely to call and find out more about you.

Since one may not be able to find them in written form, the statements that managers/clients have said about you will give you the contents to write. But you should only be written if the person really said them.

5. Experience

When writing about your experience, follow a consistent, easy-to-read format. The recommended is;

POST: the name of the company, city,  (year/period) e.g.

LAN/WAN Administrator: Microsoft Inc, Redmond, Washington (1993-1999).

Make sure that for each job applied for each of these is included, your job title, company name, city, state and the years you worked there. Since months may highlight gaps in your employment record it is better not to include them.

Below the first sentence write the daily duties you were assigned in one or two sentences lying particular emphasis on achievements, effective projects and other good things you did on each job without necessarily dwelling on the duties or responsibilities you were endowed with.

So, your description for a typical job might look like this:

For the freshly out of school who have no work experience, the education and training used in this field in such a case stating classes that are most relevant to the job you seek. You can also include in your experience section any volunteer work, even if you didn’t get paid for it,it stil counts as work. This format gives you a lot of flexibility to describe your experience in an effective manner.

6. Education

The format to should be such that of higher education attained come before the much lower one i.e. reverse chronological order E.g.

  • Master of Arts: Communications, oxford University (1984).
  • Bachelor of Arts: Art philosophy, University of Washington (1982).

To give more substance to education section, introduce an Education/Training section to list any training received after your formal education ended.

Training would ideally include; ongoing professional training such as in field like sales, management etc.

State the number of years that you attended any course that you did not finish or if you are currently in school, include your expected year of graduation.

Other facts;

Still under the education field include other Facts that are a combination of good things about you that don’t fit in other parts of the resume. This should for greater impact be put last. Such can include things like languages, computer skills etc

Revising Your Resume

Proof read the entire document to remove all things that don’t seem to make or those that dont add to the desired effect of the. Make sure that all grammatical and punctuations are right.

Length of the resume

Ideally, the resume should be made to fit into one page. However, for people in technical careers or those with more than 10-15 years of experience it would be hard to compress their resumes into a single page and hence a two page resume would be more appropriate.

By making the four areas below smaller, you can make room to fit more relevant things into a smaller area. These are:

  1. Name and/or address – by shrink the font size by two points
  2. Spacing between sections – use single spacing.
  3. Section headings – shrink the font size from 14 to 13 or 12 points.
  4. The body copy – shrink the font size from 12 to 11 points.

How to Proofread Your Resume

Errors in your resume can cause you the job. As most managers will recon that they would not call a candidate whose resume contains typos. A single misspelled word or punctuation error can make your otherwise well written work a ruin.

Proofread your resume four times laying particular emphasis on: spelling, spacing, punctuation and content. First print the resume before you proofread it to make it easier to read as more errors can become visible on a printed page versus as opposed to one on a computer screen.

For more detail on how to proofread, check the he professional proofreading.

Professional Resume Proofreading Checklist

As you read each part of the resume two times for each section listed below check the box after completing each task.

  • Contact information. Make certain that your name, address, ZIP code and phone are correct.
  • Facts and figures. Check that all years and numbers in the resume and cover letter add up and are they consistent.
  • Clarity and content. Read the resume aloud for awkward, missing or extra words.
  • Spacing. Ensure that the space between each sentence and section is the same.
  • Spelling. Your word processing application can be a useful tool to help you do this right.
  • Punctuation. If you read the resume backwards any punctuation mistakes such as commas, dashes between dates, apostrophes, will be more evident.
  • Layout. Make certain that the upper and lower margins even and pleasing to the eye and there is also consistency in white spaces throughout the document. Have a friend give you a second opinion.

Printing Your Resume

The quality in printing of a resume can only be produced by a laser printer not an inkjet or dot matrix printer. Visit your local printer if necessary.

This should also be matched with use of high-quality stationery  most preferably a cream or ivory-colored paper, of at least 24 pounds in weight and avoid heavy paper as such crease and damage the print.

Resume Writing Mistakes to Avoid

For yours to be truly an outstanding piece of advertisement of your skills and abilities avoid these mistakes that are committed by most applicants and cause them the jobs. Here are four mistakes that hinder most resumes.

  • Spelling and punctuation Errors. If you assume that your spell-checker is enough, and don’t go through the document after you type it, then what you end up with is a paper with very many of this deadly error. Always read through the resume at least thrice after typing; once for accuracy of  numbers, dates, city names, once for missing/extra words, and once more for spelling after which you can ask a friend to read it out loud then listen to any inconsistent pauses; this could mean you’ve written something confusing or inaccurate. Revise the resume once more after hearing them read it out loud.
  • Resume with no objective or summary. A resume with no objective to clearly state the position that you are applying for can only lead you to disaster as you force the employer to read it all the way through to figure out what kind of job you’re suited for thus creating more work for your busy reader. They won’t appreciate that.
  • Emphasize on responsibilities instead of results. It is important to tell the reader what you did at each job but use more space telling them about what you accomplished and what made you a valuable employee to past employers. The point is, focus on results and achievements.
  • Too many big words. Use simple words and sentence structures that explain what you wanted said in an easy to understand manner. The language should be as simple as that used to address sixth graders or the one used to write papers. SIMPLICITY is the point thus words like “implemented, can be replaced by the more simper  “adopted” or “set up,”

It’s our hope that all the help that you needed was afforded here and that you are now able to go ant create a winner resume for that dream job!