How To Fill The Gap Left By The Covid
The first thing to know is that COVID-19 has disrupted the career plans of thousands of students and you’re not alone. As a result of the pandemic career-boosting activities such as work experience, internships and volunteering have been postponed or cancelled. If this has left you worrying about the corona-shaped gap on your CV let us put your mind at rest.
Employers understand the challenges caused by lockdowns only too well and they won’t expect you to have completed a period of work experience in this time. That said you could still demonstrate to potential employers how you used this time wisely – showing yourself to be a proactive, dedicated and resilient candidate.
You could mention:
- details of online courses or Massive Open Online Courses you’ve undertaken or webinars or online events you’ve attended
- the acquisition of new skills, such as learning a language or learning to code
- volunteering work such as checking in on and shopping for vulnerable neighbours or caring for young siblings or elderly relatives
- charity work – perhaps you got involved with fundraising or raising awareness of a particular ogranisation.
- new hobbies such as starting to vlog, picking up a sport, learning to cook or setting up a community book club.
Remember – you’ll need to relate these to the job you’re applying for so focus on the skills these activities taught you and how/why they’d be useful.
Read our example cover letter explaining a gap in your CV.
How To Make A Resume
Before you even start working on your resume, you need to decide how youre going to build it.
And no – you shouldnt use a basic text editor. While this IS the most popular method for creating a resume, its very far from the best.
With a basic text editor resume, youll need to spend hours playing with the formatting. You make a minor change and BAM! Your entire resume layout gets messed up.
Instead of using a text editor, we recommend choosing a resume builder, such as Novorésumé. Our resume builder is fast, easy, and to put the icing on the cake, a Novorésumé looks much better and can fit more information than your average, cookie-cutter resume…
To get the most out of this guide, you can head over to the resume builder and start building your resume on-the-go as you read this guide.
Choose The Right Formatting
There are three major formats to write a resume: chronological, functional and combination. Although most resumes follow a chronological format, the correct format may depend on the industry, your job title and personal preferences.
Restrict the length of your resume to a page or two. Depending on your work history, it may benefit you to focus on the most recent position you held and the most important educational qualifications you hold. Keep the descriptions about older jobs and less relevant qualifications as short as possible.
Related: Resume Format Guide
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Start With A Resume Summary
A good-looking resume always starts with a summary section. A resume summary is a short section at the top of your resume highlighting your career and your key qualifications. It can be formatted either as a paragraph of three to four sentences or as four to five bullet points.
Use it to showcase your skills and achievements, and how you can use them in a new work environment:
Server Resume Summary
Courteous server with 7+ years of experience of food preparation and service in 150+ seat restaurants. Generated additional daily wine sales of $150. Certificate in Food Handling and Safety.
How To List Education On Your Resume
The next section were going to cover is your Education. Lets start with the basics – how to format the education section & what to mention there. Then, well move on to tips & tricks thatll help you stand out
- Program Name. E.g.: B.A. in Business Administration
- University Name. E.g.: New York State University
- Years Attended. E.g.: 08/2008 – 06/2012
- GPA. E.g.: 3.9 GPA
- Honors. E.g.:Cum Laude, Magna Cum Laude, Summa Cum Laude.
- Academic achievements. Any interesting papers youve written, courses youve excelled in, etc.
- Minor. Minor in Psychology
Here’s an example:
Tips on perfecting your education section:
- If you dont have any work experience, mention your education section first.
- Mention your latest educational entry on top.
- If you have a university degree, dont mention your high school at all.
- ONLY mention GPA if you had a very impressive academic career .
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The Importance Of Page One
The first page of your resume is prime real estate, and using two columns is a good way to optimise this important space. Hallam says there are five key things you should include on page one:
Include A Summary And Your Contact Information
The first few lines of your resume are among the most important when grabbing an employer’s attention. You can make a good first impression with a compelling summary. At the top of your resume, the summary or overview section should highlight your key skills, experience, qualifications and achievements.
You should also add your name and email address at the top of your resume so that its easy to find. Making your contact details readily available will help a hiring manager who wants to contact you. Its usually enough to include only your city, state and zip code in your mailing address.
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Providing Irrelevant Personal Information
The personal details you are expected to include on your CV will vary in different countries. It is important to consider what information you are sharing with employers. In the UK, avoid a CV with a photograph, date of birth, nationality and marital status. Similarly, if you have social media accounts on Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and Facebook for personal use, you do not need to share these. This is another opportunity to make a positive impression.
Think about the position you are applying for and how your interests and achievements relate to it. An interest in the exhibitions would be useful to mention if you want to work in the arts sector community engagement activities would be suitable if you want to work in the charity sector involvement in sport activities would be advantageous if you want a career in the sports sector. You can highlight other activities that demonstrate transferable skills and your values.
How To Write A Summary Statement For A Resume
When writing a summary statement, think about your elevator pitch. For example, if you stepped into an elevator and saw the hiring manager who holds the keys to your dream job, how would you sell yourself during that 30-second elevator ride?
Consider the strengths, experiences, and accomplishments that are unique to you and write each of them down as you brainstorm. Using the job posting, determine what value can you bring to the company.
Examining patterns in the following resume sections can help zero in on your unique value points:
- Work History: What are some common threads in your work history? Look for patterns in company culture, size of the company and your role.
- Skills: In which skills are you proficient? Which of these skills apply most to the job?
- Accomplishments: What were some of your most impressive achievements in past jobs? If you can, find ways to quantify those achievements using metrics like years, percentages and dollar amounts. For example, Exceeded my sales goals in 2017 by $50k.
After compiling information from the job posting and your resume, you can begin putting together your resume summary statement. Remember to use active voice, action words, and utilize relevant keywords. Save space by keeping your summary statement below five lines.
When youre finished writing your resume, read through your summary statement from the perspective of a tough hiring manager, asking, why should we hire you?
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Situational Recognition Or Industry Considerations
On the optional fourth line, you can include additional skills, capabilities, and achievements provide additional color around the types of situations you are looking for internal, external, or industry awards and recognition or indications of industry interest that may not be clear from other items in your professional summary.
Examples might include Marketer of the Year 2018, Turnaround Expert, Growth Company Executive, Successful Public Speaker, Startup Leader, CPG Veteran, or Airline Expert.
Your optional fourth line is a great place to add additional flavor to your overall initial presentation, and round out the picture of who youd like to be next.
This specific ordering suggests a pattern to follow. If it makes more sense to you to change the order or the themes, you have the flexibility to do that. So while it makes more sense to group skills on one line and achievements on another, if the specific order of job title skills achievements awards does not work for your situation, you should change it as you see fit, and as reads best for you.
To repeat, theres no penalty for mixing and matching the themes on these various lines, but theres no benefit either. Save yourself the time and aggravation by keeping it simple and following this outline.
Should I Use Action Verbs On My Resume
In the High Score Resume, the structure for each bullet points is a success verb plus specific numerical data regarding an accomplishment in your field or role.
That means you need about 25 magic resume words for your bullet points. Rather than make you guess, Ive provided you with 25 great success verbs in the box below that can serve effectively on any resume.
Typical resume advice says to use active verbs, which the High Score Resume says arent good enough, arent powerful enough, and arent persuasive enough. Some active verbs are very bland and do nothing to help persuade a future employer. Managed, established, defined, and performed are all considered active verbs and are frequently used on resumes.
But these arent good verbs for communicating your High Score. You wouldnt say I managed a little character through a variety of levels or I performed various moves in the game.
White-collar employees, by definition, establish, manage, define, and perform a wide variety of tasks. But what the High Score Resume wants you to share is were you any good at them? And thats an important fact a hiring manager or recruiter wants to know.
The simplest thing to do would be to use these 25 verbs and only these verbs. Unless you have a good reason to expand your variety, the above success verbs can cover most bullets you can think of. Limiting your choices will save plenty of time and headache while ensuring a higher quality resume.
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What To Put On A Resume If You Have No Work Experience
Now, if you just graduated and have absolutely no work experience, heres what I recommend
However, if you have absolutely no work experience, heres what to put on your resume
Were going to follow the sections outlined above, but move #5 up to #3 so it will be right below your Summary section.
So it will look like this
The High Score Resume Format: How To Write A Resume For 2021
A lot of resume advice is good, some of it is bad, but its difficult to know which is which especially when it comes to resume formats.
So I wanted to share what weve learned at Ladders from reviewing millions of resumes over the years and seeing how those resumes did in over 1 billion applications.
Ive written covering resumes and interviews, both of which are currently in their third editions. And because I understand how pressed for time professionals are, Ive also created 73 industry-specific resume templates, containing example copy, which can be downloaded and edited free.
Each with a unique cover letter example.
So lets find out why the high score resume format works for experienced professionals like you.
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How To List Skills In Your Resume
When mentioning skills in your resume, there are 3 essential steps to follow:
Step #1 List Hard Skills with Experience Levels. For each hard skill you list, you want to mention your proficiency level:
As a rule of thumb, you can divide them by:
Beginner You have some experience with the skill, whether its from some entry-level practice or classroom education.
Intermediate Youve used the skill in a work environment with a good level of understanding.
Advanced Youre the go-to person for the skill in your office. You can coach other employees, and understand the skill on a high level.
Expert Youve applied this skill in more than a handful of different projects & organizations. Youre the go-to person for advice about the skill, not just in your office, but even amongst some of the best professionals in your field.
Make sure to NEVER lie about your skill levels. Otherwise, its going to be pretty awkward both for you and your employer.
Imagine your first task at work as an Illustrator to create a graphic vector to go nicely with an article. If you end up delivering a hastily drawn stick figure colored with a paint bucket tool in Microsoft Paint, youll be out of the job before your probation period ends.
Step #2 Tailor Your Skills to the Job. You might have some super rare, awesome skills, but theyre not always going to be useful. For example, its awesome that you know accounting, but would you really need it at your new job as a line cook? Exactly!
How To Start A Resume With A Summary Statement
A resume summary statement is a short paragraph at the beginning of a resume that highlights a job seekers professional skills and experience. It gives hiring managers a glimpse into the job seekers expertise before diving into their resume. The goal of a summary statement is to demonstrate the job seekers unique value through their skills and accomplishments.
The summary statement typically sits right below the job seekers contact information and right above the body of the resume. A resume summary statement is often referred to by other names, including:
- Career summary
As hiring managers may read through hundreds of resumes in a week, a strong summary statement can be just what a resume needs to stand out from the pack.
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How Do A Resume Supposed To Look
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Sloppy Formatting And Fonts
You want your resume to stand out, but there is such a thing as standing out in a bad way. You may think its creative to use 6 different fonts and colors, but that kind of creativity tends to just look clumsy. Avoid too many font types and steer clear of font sizes that are too big or too small.
Big fonts make you look like you are SHOUTING . Small fonts may help you keep your resume to one page, but its not worth it if the reader has to squint
You should also avoid long paragraphs and long blocks of text. Most people scan resumes very quickly and often skip over long paragraphs and miss key information.
Use white space and bullets to make your resume format easy on the eye. Use of bullets can also ensure better reader comprehension when visually scanned.
Leave comfortable margins on the page and make sure that everything is neatly aligned. Look neat. Look smart.
Also, keep in mind that theres a good chance you resume will be scanned electronically as more and more companies use special software to index resumes. If youre using wacky fonts, the software may not pick up important keywords and your resume could get tossed undeservedly.
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