The Best Resume Format Guide For 2021
By now, as a seasoned job hunter and student of The Interview Guys, you should know there are a few essentials you should have in your arsenal: business cards, a solid cover letter, your elevator pitch, and your well-formatted resume.
Hang on, havent we already gone over all this in that other article, How to Make a Resume 101?
In that article we did go over how to write a resume, but in this article, were going to take you to the next step and focus specifically on one seemingly small but massively huge part of resume building: resume format and how to select which one is right for you in 2021.
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Resume Format Guide: What Your Resume Should Look Like In 2019
At the end of the year, theres often a lot going onpeople trying to hit end of year goals, holiday parties, and general chaos. Chances are, your resume isnt your top priority. But while youre closing out this years goals and getting ready for a fresh start for the next year, its actually the perfect time to sit down and redo your resume. You never know what opportunities might be lurking in the early days of 2019, so the work you put in now will make it easier to pounce on those openings.
Our resume resources will give you the tips and guidance you need to revamp your resumeor create an entirely new one that will get you noticed . If the blank screen is intimidating and youre not sure where to start, you can always start with a template from our Resume Library.
But first, lets look at some resume theory, and how you should approach the whole process.
You may be itching to start writing right away, but taking this pre-resume step of thinking about what you want to include, and why, will make the end product even better.
What should your resume look like?
Another pre-writing step is choosing the packaging for your resume. Once you submit your resume somewhere, the path is fraught: if you lose the attention of the reader or dont have enough keywords youll end up in the no pile very fast. So its essential to think about how your resume looks, and how it can grab attention in seconds.
When Should You Submit A Resume To Colleges
Some colleges and scholarship committees request or recommend that you include a high school resume with your application materials. Bring your resume to college interviews and give copies to your college counselor and teachers so that they can write you the strongest possible recommendation letter.
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It Lacks Social Profile Links
In many fields, social media has become the go-to way for establishing expertise. And recruiters and hiring managers are definitely looking to see that you can play that game.
For many types of job roles, I look up the social media presence of candidates, says John Boese, founder of EliteHired.com in New York City. If you don’t have a website or social media link in your resume, it tells me that you either don’t know social media or don’t know how to write a modern resume. Both of these are bad.
Formatting Your Margins And Spacing
When you format your resume you want to make sure that your leave enough margin space to allow for printing. If you try to adjust your margins and make them too narrow in order to fit more into your page, you run the risk of critical information being cut off if an employer prints it out.
Inversely, making your margins too large will leave your resume looking boxed in and squished. The general rule is to set your margins at one inch on all sides.
Think of your resume as a piece of fine artwork. Your margins should create a beautiful frame around it. If youre truly desperate for space, you can slightly adjust your top and bottom margins but try to avoid adjusting your side margins.
In terms of the spacing, keep your resume to single-spaced with a blank line between each section of your content.
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How To Write A Resume Summary As An Experienced Professional
If you have 5 to 10 years of professional experience under your belt, youve probably developed a long list of job-related accomplishments. Your qualifications summary is the ideal place to showcase the most impressive of them.
Are you an experienced sales and customer service professional? Sell it. Mention how you developed strategies that resulted in an over 15 % increase in new customers. Or how your rewards program reached a customer success rate of over 45 %.
See? Numbers are much more persuasive than words. Also, remember to use action words and relevant keywords.
Here a professional summary example for an experienced professional:
HubSpot Director of Business Development Resume Example
- Passionate Business Amplifier.
- Thrives in complex market segment entry and sales and marketing launch plans for technical products and services. Founder of the highly-impactful “HubSpot for Veterans” initiative.
- Proven Growth Consultant and Entrepreneurial Coach for over 200 organizations. Advocate of lean startup and data-backed strategy.
- Leadership spans career with direct application towards startups, Techstar accelerators, corporate business development, and government. ROI-focused relationship builder.
- Lifelong teacher and learner: Startup Institute, Techstarts, HubSpot Partner programs.
What Is A Resume Objective
First of all, it’s not the same thing as a resume summary. They share several common features but each serves a different purpose.
Like a resume summary, a resume objective also sits at the top of your resume. Though, its a bit shorter usually about one to two sentences long. The biggest difference is that instead of your past accomplishments, it details your future goals.
Although a resume objective might not help hiring managers decide whether youre qualified enough to solve their companys problems, it may help you shift their attention away from your lack of experience.
With that said, resume objectives are a bit antiquated and should only be written as a last resort if at all.
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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.
No Gimmicky Graphics Or Photos
Its a job you are looking for and not a date. As such, you want to leave fancy graphics and photos off your CV.
Unless expressly stated in the job ad, your pictures arent pertinent to your skills and abilities. In fact, including a picture in your CV increases the odds of job discrimination. Some organizations decline applications with photos outright to avoid facing any legal redress.
As a rule of thumb, do your research to know if your picture is relevant to your job application. Sometimes, a professional photo is necessary for creative roles like the performing arts, films, and graphic designs.
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How To Write A High School Resume For College Applications
Think resumes are only for job seekers? Think again. High school student resumes give colleges a snapshot of your accomplishments, extracurriculars, hobbies, and work history. They can also be a useful tool for prepping for a college interview or to give to the teachers who are writing your letters of recommendation.
Not sure how to get started? Follow our tips for crafting a standout resume for college and scholarship applications.
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Focus On Your Education And Skills
In lieu of a work experience section, it’s best to expand and focus on an education section on your resume to highlight the skills you’ve developed. What can you do well that this job requires? What will be useful to the hiring company? What have you done in school and what have you studied that has prepared you for assuming this job? This is generally a little easier if you’re a college graduate with specialized education, but even a high school graduate can talk about their electives and relevant coursework, why they wanted to take them, and what they learned from the class.
What Does A Good Resume Look Like
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A resume gives you the opportunity to present your background, experience and abilities to an employer before meeting with them. A well-written resume should highlight your qualifications for the position you have applied for. In this article, well review what makes a resume look good and provide some examples.
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Important Facts About The Federal Hiring Process
- The Federal Government does have a standard job application. Your resume is your application.
- Hiring agencies use the job announcement to describe the job and list the required qualifications and responsibilities.
- After applying, the hiring agency uses the information in your resume to verify if you have the required qualifications stated in the job announcement.
- Once the hiring agency has determined who is qualified, they may use other assessments such as interviews or testing to determine the best qualified applications.
How To Build The Perfect Cv: Formatting & Layout
There are two popular types of CVs: skills-focused CV and work-focused CV. Skills-focused CVs are suited for people with gaps in their work history, school leavers, and career changers. You can also give more spotlight to your , coding or other skills you gained recently.
Work-focused CVs are ideal for people who want to showcase their work experience or those advancing to the next stage in their career.
There are generally accepted formatting approaches for both types of CVs, including:
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Know What To Leave Off Your Resume
Millions of workers lost their jobs as a result of the pandemic, and many are still trying to find gainful employment today.
The silver lining, Leavy-Detrick says, is that employers have had to relax some outdated hiring practices as a result. Most noteworthy? Job seekers with a large employment gap on their resumeonce seen as a major red flagare getting a pass.
If your job was a casualty of COVID layoffs, its worth showing how youve stayed active and kept your skills fresh in the interim by getting a professional certification, attending virtual webinars, or otherwise.
Be discerning with the rest of the content: Dont add salary requirements, infographics or photographs. You can also leave off your home address, especially if youre applying for a remote role, or are hoping to convince a hiring manager to consider a remote candidate.
Lastly, avoid the temptation to tick off every job youve ever had.
The resume is a high-level snapshot of your skills, experience, and accomplishments, Leavy-Detrick says. If a hiring manager has to scan through a really bulky one, theyre more likely to miss key responsibilities.
Anything beyond that is best left for the cover letter.
When Should You Have A Skills Section On A Resume
We typically tell candidates that special certificates and training can be mentioned in the Skills section. If thats not you, better just leave it off. However, a Skills section can actually be really important for technical resumes to show the languages/programs you know and can also be useful if youre concerned about being picked up by ATS .
The main idea here is that you want to include programs/products/skills that are unique and make you stand out versus simply saying you know how to use email and write in Word.
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Engage Essay Writers For Help Beyond School Walls
If you think college is all about classes, youre sorely mistaken. Its about building a foundation for your future career and social network. So if youre stuck in a vicious circle of classes, library, and dorm room, youre missing out on the most important part of the college experience. You need to get out and make friends who might end up your BFFs you need to seek internship opportunities, connect with professors and TAs, and seek new and exciting ways to gain experiences to add to your collection of fond memories and your resume, too. And a reliable writing service can help you achieve all that.
Think of hiring a writer as an investment in your freedom and put it to good use. Its time for you to be the decision-maker. So prioritize valuable opportunities for your future over homework. After all, you can pay for essay writing, but you cannot buy industry experience, professional connections, or meaningful relationships.
Add A Skills Section With Bullet Points
Skip the resume objective and lead with the good stuff instead. The top of your resume should include “critical keywords and a quick snapshot of your core strengths, Leavy-Detrick says. Bullet points are a solid choice they stand out even if someone is just skimming your resume.
Hard skills also take precedence here, so highlight them accordingly. If youre in a tech-driven field, software and programming expertise is what employers want to see on your resume. If youre in a creative industry, design and communication skills might be your best bet.
This is another opportunity to show how youve helped your company disperse change, since the onset of the pandemic, Leavy-Detrick says. Tech skills that prove youve got some new digital know-how, even if its just with Zoom and Slack, are fair game.
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Choose The Right Resume Format
Potential employers will spend a short amount of time looking at your resumeusually only several seconds. The easier your resume is to scan, the better you can hold their attention. Most recruiters and hiring managers will focus their attention on the following resume sections:
Name and contact information
Relevant skills and experiences
The best resume formats are well organized with only the most relevant information and should make efficient use of blank space to avoid clutter.
c. Description of role and achievement
To ensure your qualities and accomplishments are easily visible, choose a simple layout that allows you to showcase the qualifications that are most relevant to the job posting. To eliminate blank spaces, consider including additional sections that could be helpful for employers like relevant skills, awards and achievements or professional interests.
Pro Tip: For college students or recent graduates, the chronological resume format is recommended for presenting your credentials to employers. This format allows you to present your most important information first.
For more information on selecting a resume format, check out our guides on using the most popular resumes:Combination Resume Tips and Examples – For candidates whose skills are more important than work experience
Customize Your Resume For Each Job You Apply To
The last and most important thing to remember when creating a good resume is to customize it for every job to which you apply. Different job postings are going to have different keywords, different job duties listed, and so on. Appealing to each individual employer’s needs and job requirements is the best strategy for getting your application noticed and hopefully landing your first job.
At the end of the day, there’s no magical formula for how to write a winning resume the only perfect resume is the one that gets you the job. Be prepared to tweak and update your resume, even when you’re comfortably employed. Utilize a hybrid resume format and focus on your skills and education when you don’t have any work experience to show. Sooner or later, you’ll land that job and gain that much-coveted experience.
Tackling this kind of resume isn’t easy. If you’ve recently graduated or are in an entry-level job search, a professional resume writer can prepare you for success. Learn more.
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Include Dates Hours Level Of Experience And Examples For Each Work Experience
For each work experience you list, make sure you include:
- Start and end dates .
- The number of hours you worked per week.
- The level and amount of experiencefor instance, whether you served as a project manager or a team member helps to illustrate your level of experience.
- Examples of relevant experiences and accomplishments that prove you can perform the tasks at the level required for the job as stated in the job announcement. Your experience needs to address every required qualification.
Whats A Resume Summary & When To Use It
A resume summary is a 2-3 sentence summary of your career. You should use a resume summary in basically any situation, unless youre a recent university graduate or switching careers .
In your resume summary, you need to mention:
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