Changing Times For Resumes
It goes without saying that resumes these days are delivered as email attachments, not printed out and mailed.
Although the two-page maximum still stands, many applicants use the web to the max when it comes to attachments. Video introductions, charts, graphs, and other illustrations can make you stand out, as long as they’re relevant and slickly made.
Next Steps After Your Resume
Now that weve covered everything you need to know about how to create a resume, lets talk cover letters & interviews.
After all, your resume is only the first step in your job search. To really land that job you deserve, you also need to craft a killer cover letter, and ace that upcoming interview.
Certifications Awards And Accolades
Devoting a resume section to certifications, awards and accolades could make sense for job seekers with impressive distinctions. If you dont have any relevant accolades and certifications, or only a few, embedding them in your work experience and skills sections is a good solution.
Read more:8 Certifications to Add to Your Resume
Recommended Reading: How To Put Community Service On Resume
Remember To Include Any Awards Youve Received Or Concerts Youve Performed In
It might not be that important to include that one time you won an award in middle school, but if you were nominated or won an award for outstanding achievement in something you deem important, include it. Be smart about this. High schoolers who won awards or were nominated for their states high school theatre awards should put that down. Especially if you were able to go to the Jimmy Awards in New York City!
As for concerts, I would really only list a few that explain more about who you are. I love when I see an actor who has performed in a benefit concert or worked with a Broadway caliber musical director.
What Is A Cover Letter
A cover letter is a short document that you send with your resume when applying for a job. As a hiring manager will read this letter first, and possibly even decide whether to go over your resume or not based on what they think of the letter, it is important to take care when drafting this document. Many hiring managers have to work their way through hundreds or even thousands of applications, so you want to ensure that your cover letter is error-free, memorable and stands out from the rest.
Read Also: What Gpa Should You Put On Your Resume
Additional Relevant Accomplishments And Volunteer Work
The last section to consider adding to your resume is a shortlist of any other relevant accomplishments or volunteer work. Only include those that are relevant or that may help create a better picture of who you are as an individual as related to the position youre applying for. If youre not sure what information may be a fit for this section, re-read the job descriptions that interest you. Consider if you have any experiences outside of the professional history you already added which may help employers understand your qualifications.
Here is an example of what your accomplishments and volunteer work section could look like:
Volunteer firefighter, 20102012
Extracurricular Activities Sports And Clubs
After you awards and achievements, create a section for extracurricular activities. List anything you are passionate about that shows your positive attitude and aptitude for the job youre applying for, such as playing a musical instrument, clubs, sports and other activities. In your resume, list the relevant activity and include a brief description.
Example of how to list extracurricular activities, sports and clubs:Piano Has played piano for 8 years and practices, on average, 4 hours per day.Babysitting Babysits neighbors, 8 and 3 years old, twice a week.Swimming Competitive swimmer, having won multiple gold and silver medals in state competitions.
Recommended Reading: How To Put Your Linkedin Profile On Your Resume
Your Resume Is Not An Autobiography
Don’t confuse telling your story with creating your autobiography. Employers are inundated with resume submissions and are faced with weeding out the good from the bad. The first step involves quickly skimming through resumes and eliminating candidates who clearly are not qualified. Therefore, your resume needs to pass the skim test. Look at your resume and ask yourself:
- Can a hiring manager see my main credentials within 10 to 15 seconds?
- Does critical information jump off the page?
- Do I effectively sell myself on the top quarter of the first page?
Study The Job Description
Each time you apply for a job, change your objective statement to fit the job description. Learn more about the company and what they are looking for in a candidate. When describing your career ambitions, make sure they are possible at that company.
Hiring managers like to see that youve done some research and thought carefully about whether youre a good fit for their open position. They also want to see that youll be a fit for them long-term and that your career goals are something you can achieve with them.
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+ Effective Resume Examples
Knowing how to write a resume is one thing, actually creating a resume that stands out is something else entirely. Without inspiration, even top career experts might stumble on a roadblock or two.
Check out the following effective resume examples to get a better sense of what a good resume looks like…
Want to see more examples? Check out our compilation of 20+ resume examples for different fields.
What To Put On A Resume
What to include in a resume? Which resume sections to keep off? This complete guide outlines exactly which things to put on your resume to make it shine.
In 5 minutes you’ll learn what to put on a resume, but first think about this
You have years of skills, goals, work history, and education.
Youve only got an 8×11 piece of paper in front of you .
How can you squeeze all that into such a limited space?
Which resume sections are a must? Which to leave off? Where do you put what?
Well, the first thing to put is your mind at ease.
In this resume guide, youll learn:
- What should be on a resume, where to add it, and what not to include.
- How to structure a resume by using the best resume components.
- Other things to include in a resume and with your resume.
- How to write a resume for a job correctly using just the right resume sections.
Save hours of work and get a resume like this. Pick a template, fill it in. Quick and easy. Choose from
What users say about ResumeLab:
I had an interview yesterday and the first thing they said on the phone was: Wow! I love your resume.PatrickI love the variety of templates. Good job guys, keep up the good work!Dylan My previous resume was really weak and I used to spend hours adjusting it in Word. Now, I can introduce any changes within minutes. Absolutely wonderful!George
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Key Skills Youve Learned In School And Other Experiences
After your professional summary, list your skills that are relevant to the position you are applying for. To get a good idea of the skills required for a job, simply browse job descriptions for that specific job title. Typically, within the requirements or qualifications section, there will be many skills listed that you can copy.
Dont be afraid to list skills that you havent used in a professional setting. If you have learned about them in school or if you have practiced these skills during an extracurricular activity, list them! Just make sure you are honest during an interview about your level of competency.
Example of how to list less than 10 key skills in a resume:
- Time Management
Example of how to list more than 10 key skills in a resume:
- Leadership: Team Management, Resource Planning, Budgeting
- Math: Data Entry, Data Analytics, Statistics
- Professionalism: Active Listening, Office Etiquette, Professional Communication, Time Management
- Languages: English , Spanish
Using The Chronological Resume Format
A chronological resume format is the most common resume format, however there are many misconceptions about it. See if it’s the best choice for you, how to format it, what information to include, and how to organize each section.
Some employers may also ask you to provide a detailed list of every job you’ve worked for the past five or 10 years. In this case, it’s necessary that you list absolutely everything as it’s likely that the company will check your tax records to verify this information, meaning you could be disqualified should you decide to leave anything off.
If you are trying to shift into a different role, consider what resume format you will use. Reverse chronological order is preferred, but there are cases where you may want to group your previous experience based on relevance to your target job. Then you can create a section of your resume for other job experience if necessary.
Q: What if Ive had many jobs in a short time?
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Write A Killer Cover Letter
Every job application should include a cover letter. Every single one. Even a job application for a position in the checkout line at the grocery store can include a cover letter. Why? Because it is the only introduction you might have to your future employer.
“I wrote a cover letter to get a job at Claire’s,” says Kathi, a Coast Guard wife living in Tampa who moved to be with her husband and had no local job connections. “No job experience, no connections. It was brutal,” she remembers.
Kathi had worked seasonally at her local mall in high school, but because she was a varsity athlete, she did not have time to hold down a real job in addition to school. “I had a little experience, but my supervisors had all gotten new jobs and I didn’t have their contact info,” she says. “So I worked for a few weeks but had no references.”
Kathi was worried that would mean she would have no one to speak on her behalf, so she took the opportunity to speak for herself. “I thought cover letters would be for bigger jobs, but my boss said she gets cover letters all the time. She said that it’s a good way to learn about someone.”
Most employers share Kathi’s boss’s approach. A cover letter is a reasonable expectation from any recent graduate or someone who lacks the professional history a stand-out resume might have.
Better yet: Do write your cover letter specifically for every position. The personalization comes through and shows you take the position seriously.
Embedded Charts And Images
While these design elements may look nice to the human eye, resumes with embedded images become a garbled mess, or get completely omitted from your application, after they pass through ATS. In addition, recruiters don’t want to see a pictorial and rather subjective representation of your skills like the second resume I review in this video. Save your creativity for your online portfolio and don’t include images in your resume.
Read Also: Posting A Resume On Indeed
Spelling Or Grammar Mistakes
Proofread and spellcheck everything.
You are very unlikely to get called for an interview if you have a spelling or grammar mistake on your resume and nobodys going to tell you either.
So you need to find it yourself, or have a friend proofread it carefully for you!
Heres a little trick if you proofread it yourself: temporarily change your resume to an unusual font before proofreading. It will help you spot errors .
Now youve hopefully gotten answers to your questions about what should a resume include, and youve seen the top things to leave off as well.
Theres one final step, though, thats going to get you far more interviews from all of this
What To Include In Your Resume
Now that you know what not to include in your resume, take a second look at your resume to make sure it includes all the right elements to effectively tell your story and market your qualifications. Click on the following link to learn what 11 pieces of information every professional should include in a resume.
Not sure if your resume includes any of these mistakes? Let us help! Take advantage of TopResume’s free critique today!
Also Check: Where To Put Relevant Coursework On A Resume
Don’t Leave Huge Gaps In Your Employment History
At the end of the day, it’s up to you how much or how little information to include on your resume. A good rule of thumb is to try to keep the resume as short as you can without leaving out anything pertinent, but this is generally easier said than done. A one-page resume is the goal if you dont have a lot of experience, but many job seekers have two-page resumes. Just dont go any longer than that.
Q: What about online applications?
A: The trick with online applications is that ATSsystems may require specific dates that make gaps more glaring. If you find yourself in that situation, make sure you explain the gap in your cover letter or during your interview.
As long as you try to focus on the most relevant information in detail, you can feel free to be brief about the less important stuff or leave it off altogether. You dont want the gaps to be too large, however, because that will raise questions in the minds of recruiters. Be prepared to answer any questions about any larger periods of time not accounted for as, unless you have a good reason for it, most employers won’t find it desirable to learn that you were out of workfor an extended time. While this may mean including less relevant positions or short-term jobs, it will also prevent a potential employer from thinking you were unemployed for several years. You may consider simply listing your employer, dates, and job title without offering a full job description.
What Do You Put On Your Resume When You Have No Work Experience
Trying to get a job straight out of school? Or a stay-at-home mom trying to get back into the work force? If you are looking at your resume and it reads like a blank page, you are not alone.
But a blank resume does not have to be an application killer for military spouses. Follow these five tips and make that resume work for you.
Related: Does your resume pass the 6-second test? Get a FREE assessment.
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What About Jobs Where I Got Fired
This is another question where the answer is it depends. If it became clear early on that the job wasnt for you or that you had a personality clash with the boss, theres no need to include it. This is especially true if the experience does not apply to the work you seek now.
If you were fired from a long-term position, definitely put the job on your resume. Do not say you were fired, but be prepared to answer the question, Why did you leave this job? There are a couple of ways to handle this question. The big no-no is lying. You may choose to gloss over the reason by saying that you were looking for new opportunities, but remember that your former employer may reveal that you were terminated during a reference check. Thus, your best bet is honest.
How honest do you have to be when explaining your termination? Our answer is briefly honest. No need to go into detail. Alison Green offers these short explanations in The Cut:
Actually, I was let go. Thats on me I took a job that required pretty advanced design skills, which frankly I dont have. I thought Id be able to get up to speed quickly, but I underestimated how much Id need to learn. They made the right call, and I was relieved to get back to editing.
Just for Inspiration
*Source: Business Insider
Only List Your Performance Credits On Your Actor Resume
Your credits as a director, choreographer, lighting designer, set designer, costume designer, stage manager, etc can go on a separate resume. The goal is to only include credits on your actor resume that involved your performance on stage. Other credits will muddy the water for casting directors.
If youre creatively involved and you are submitting yourself for a directorial position, make a new resume for that.
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Keywords From The Job Posting
You’ll want to include some keywords and phrases from the job posting. This is especially important if the employer uses a résumé-scanning system.
Augustine says in addition to eyeballing job descriptions that are relevant to your job search and pulling out the most commonly used keywords, you can also copy and paste a number of the job descriptions into JobScan.co to identify the most frequently mentioned terms and see how your résumé measures up.
“You get up to five scans for free, so I recommend scanning your résumé against a number of job descriptions at the same time to get the most out of the service and get a better aggregate of the terms you should be using.”
Things Not To Include In Your Resume And Why
When it comes to Resumes what NOT to include is almost as important as the information thats in there. Your Resume needs to give the recruiter a great first impression but it will probably be one of many received. Its therefore important to use the space and words wisely and ditch the unnecessary clutter.
Its never been more important to get your Resume and job application 100% right the first time. Since it will most likely be one of many received, you need to give yourself the best chance at getting noticed. As Resume Writers, we often get asked why certain information hasnt been included.
Heres a list of five things we avoid and why:
1. Career Objective: Dont waste words stating what you want. Put yourself in the employers shoes. They need to understand immediately Whats in it for me? not what youre searching for in life. Instead of your own personal career objective, we suggest including a career overview that provides a snapshot of who you are, your relevant qualifications, skills and experience and the overall value you could bring to the role.
3. Personal Information: It is not necessary to include age, height, weight, marital status, health, children, hobbies, religious, cultural or political associations so dont waste space by doing so.